A woman from Queensland has taken to Facebook seeking answers after she was puzzled by a cluster of small, round, black eggs she spotted on a palm leaf.
“Just saw these ‘eggs’ on the underside of a palm frond and wonder what will hatch?” the woman posted in the local Facebook group for the northeastern suburbs of Brisbane.
The picture showed about 10 round, dark-coloured orbs held together with a spider’s web.
“I’m quite sure ... it won't be chickens,” one person joked.
One person in the group advised the woman to leave immediately.
“The fact it is wrapped in a spider web, walk away!” the wrote.
Another suggested the woman taste one but that idea was quickly shot down.
“They're aniseed balls. Just eat them and enjoy. Taste like black jelly beans,” a user said.
Spider eggs – but what kind?
Some people in the group wondered what type of spider the eggs belonged to.
“Definitely a spider’s egg sack but what kind?” one person asked
“Gees how big are the spiders going to be coming out of those?” another added.
After some research a few people in the group identified the eggs as “bird dropping spider eggs”.
“I found some a few weeks ago and watched one ‘hatch’ - nature is truly amazing,” one person commented.
The Australian Museum Manager of Search and Discover, David Bock, said they were indeed spider egg sacs, but was still unsure of which type of spider.
“Bird dropping spiders have very similar egg sacs. These look darker than those. So it might be that spider or a related one,” he told Yahoo News Australia.
Bird dropping spiders are not considered to be dangerous and have developed a clever way to camouflage themselves from predators because they have bodies that look similar to unappetising bird droppings.
Although many spiderlings will hatch from each egg if they are from a bird dropping spider, after hatching they will grow quite large, up to 12mm for females.
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