Do You See a Snake or a Spider?
That shifting, swirling thing that resembles a snake’s head? It’s a spider.
Rather, a spider’s abdomen. Regularly photographed in Singapore, the creature's pulsating designs are proving a tricky puzzle to solve. Scientists don’t know how the arachnid, in the genus Cyrtarachne, produces the internal movements, let alone what purpose it might serve.
“People love to jump to conclusions what such a behavior is good for,” such as attracting prey or deterring predators, says Rainer Foelix, author of the book Biology of Spiders.
“Rather than to speculate, it would be better to study this phenomenon scientifically,” Foelix says.
“I haven’t seen anything like it,” adds Linda Rayor, a spider biologist at Cornell University. “Really, it is bizarre and interesting.”
These curious pulsations have also