An Aussie captured the skin-crawling moment a spider wasp dragged a paralysed huntsman spider back to its nest.
The unfussed local shared the minute-long clip to Reddit and added the caption "spider wasp doing its thing… huntsman becomes incubator."
The phrase 'incubator' refers to the hair-raising reason why a spider wasp takes the spider in the first place. According to the Australian Museum, female spider wasps prepare their nests by digging a burrow before searching for a spider to paralyse by stinging it.
They then drag the spider back to its burrow while it’s still alive. The wasp will lay eggs on the spider and when the larva hatch, it feeds on the body of the spider while it is still alive.
"It’s remarkable how the larvae know not to eat vital organs until last… how do they know?" added the original poster of the video.
Aussies react to the footage
While many Aussies understand that nature must take its course, many couldn’t help but feel bad for the spider.
“I know spider wasp is just doing what evolution has dictated what works, but I feel so bad for poor huntsy,” said one commenter. “I used to be freaked out by huntsman until the night one dropped on my head, bounced off and scurried away. Ever since then, I’ve had a lot of love for those big, nerdy, shy things.”
“Is the order of things, but yeah, I feel bad for the huntsman too. Love em,” replied the original poster.
Wasp larvae ‘take days to finish huntsman’
Australian Museum's Search and Discover Department coordinator David Bock previously explained to Yahoo News Australia how the wasp and its young might take days to finish off the huntsman.
"What it'll do is pretty much drag it in a straight line back to its nest. It's already dug a burrow, so take the spider down while it's still alive. [The wasp] will then lay a single egg in it, the baby will hatch out and then it'll start to eat the spider alive," he added.
"It eats the spider bit by bit, leaving the vital organs last so it'll stay alive for longer."
Neither of the creepy critters are considered aggressive or venomous, while huntsmans are sometimes a welcome houseguest due to their reputation for eating cockroaches.
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