Tuesday, June 15th 2021, 2:51 pm - The itsy bitsy spiders made a giant, creepy fabric.
Parts of eastern Victoria, Australia are draped with a large film, seen draping roadsides, trees, and street signs.
The translucent material is spider silk - lots and lots of it. It's the result of recent flooding, which caused spiders to seek higher ground to build their homes.
Local Jena Beatson told The Guardian that when the wind blows the webs "look like waves" and said there are "spiders everywhere."
Dr. Ken Walker, a senior curator of entomology, told the publication the spider emergence isn't out of the ordinary in the area. They are 'lassoing' themselves to higher ground using a thin silk that's lighter than air.
"It hooks on to the tops of the vegetation because it’s lighter than air, and then they quickly climb up,” Dr. Walker explained.
When millions of spiders lasso upward in unison the threads can hook together, creating the current scenario, which is sometimes referred to as the gossamer effect.
Interestingly, the type of spider that creates these threads doesn't build traditional webs, even after evading a threat. That means each thread was likely thrown up by a single spider, indicating the sheer volume of arachnids in the area.
MORE RAIN, MORE PROBLEMS
Spiders aren't the only rain-induced issue plaguing southeastern Australia. Heavy rain, cooler temperatures, and a higher-than-usual crop yield have led to an overabundance of mice, which have destroyed crops and farming machinery.