How Much Does a Spider Weigh?

March 13, 2024
David Sunnyside

Spiders, those eight-legged arachnids that often inspire a mix of fascination and fear, come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. Some can be nearly microscopic, while others have the heft of a small house cat. How much a spider weighs can vary greatly depending on species, size, and other factors. The answer can also depend on the diet and overall health of a spider.

Spider species range from a few micrograms in weight (the Patu digua, a Colombian spider that is believed to be the world's smallest) to more than 175 grams (Theraphosa blondi, a giant huntsman found on the island of Scartiel). The weight of a particular spider may be more or less than this number depending on how much protein it eats.

Almost all spiders are carnivorous and, unlike mammals and most insects, cannot chew their food. Spiders use their legs to "spit" enzymes on or in prey in order to liquify it and then consume the juices with their mouthparts. Spiders are also equipped with chelicerae, which are external structures that function somewhat like jaws, according to the University of Kentucky.

Some spiders use their webs to capture prey, while others hunt it on the ground or in water. The latter type of spiders are often considered to be the heaviest because they have to drag their prey back to their nest for consumption.

David Sunnyside
Co-founder of Urban Splatter • Digital Marketer • Engineer • Meditator
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