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Notes on the Habits of some Common English Spiders


SOME years ago I sent to NATURE (vol. xxiii. p. 149) an account of the behaviour of the common small garden spider when a sounding tuning-fork is brought near. If the fork is made to touch any part of the web, or the twigs or leaves by which the web is supported, the trembling of the web completely deceives the spider, so that, after rapidly finding which radial line is most disturbed, she runs along this one and attempts to secure the tuning-fork. She fails to discover in the cold and polished steel anything different from her usual food; or rather, being led by instinct to eat that which buzzes, she struggles in vain to find a soft place in the armour of her prey.

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