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Still Waters

Electric fields elicit ballooning in spiders

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Still Waters

Sometimes, when it rains or when they feel the urge to migrate, spiders get out their little silk knapsacks, and balloon away.

This ballooning behaviour is well understood by spider scientists, but researchers have recently discovered that electric fields can not only trigger the behaviour, but also provide lift – even without the slightest breeze.

"When one thinks of airborne organisms, spiders do not usually come to mind," explained researchers Erica Morley and Daniel Robert from the University of Bristol, in their paper.

"However, these wingless arthropods have been found 4 kilometres [2.5 miles] up in the sky, dispersing hundreds of kilometres."

https://www.sciencealert.com/spiders-use-electric-fields-to-fly-balloon-through-the-air-and-migrate

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XenoFish

By the title I was expecting something different. Exploding spiders.

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DebDandelion

Very interesting read!

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lightly

Ya, that really is fascinating

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FlyingAngel

New power for Spider Man (in movie) : eject silk into the air and fight airborne like a bird.

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Jon the frog

That's hot !

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fred_mc

Interesting. Wonder if we also could use the naturally occurring electrical fields in some way.

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UFOwatcher

Interesting story. Thanks!

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