Spiders ‘can travel across water like ships’

SPIDERS are able to travel across water like ships, using their legs as sails and silk as an anchor, scientists have learned.

Spiders can travel across water like ships. Picture: PA
Spiders can travel across water like ships. Picture: PA

The arachnids were already known to take to the air on “ballooning” flights, using their silk to catch the wind and carry them up to 30 kilometres (18.6 miles) a day.

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Now spiders have been shown to be sailors as well as aviators.

Tests carried out on trays of water showed that many species adopted elaborate postures, such as lifting a pair of legs, to take advantage of wind currents.

In this way they “sailed” in turbulent, still, fresh and salt water conditions.