Millions Of Spiders Rain Down On Australian Town

An area in Australia recently has millions of baby spiders raining down from the sky in Southern Tablelands, an area near Sydney, New South Wales. Webs fell from the sky and covered entire houses and fields for dozens of square miles.

“The whole house was covered in these little black spiderlings,” said local resident Ian Watson “And when I looked up at the sun it was like this tunnel of webs going up for a couple of hundred meters into the sky.” While the phenomenon was described as beautiful there were also some drawbacks.

“I was annoyed because … you couldn’t go out without getting spider webs on you. And I’ve got a beard as well, so they kept getting in my beard,” he told the Morning Herald. Watson, and others in the area, posted hundreds of images to social media sites.

Martyn Robinson, a naturalist from the Australian Museum, said that while the spiders appeared to be raining down from the sky, they were actually using a technique called ballooning, where they climb to a high point and then release a stream of silk that allows them to be carried in the air. Such mass migrations lead to the “angel hair” phenomenon, which can cover many square miles with the silky webs.

Southern Tablelands was generally spiderweb free by morning because of cold overnight temperatures. Spiders can travel great distances with the ballooning method and have been observed more than 1.8 miles above the ground.

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