The struggle to survive isn't always a fair fight. Here's what separates nature's winners from it's losers.
The six-spotted fishing spider is common along ponds and streams, but there’s nothing ordinary about it. Measuring 2.5 inches long, this big spider can hunt on land, water, and deep below.
The gray treefrog tadpole is a tempting meal, but the tadpole’s strong tail and newly developing legs let it quickly dart out of harm’s way.
With eight eyes, nothing slips past the fishing spider. Slight changes on the water’s surface alert it when a meal is within striking distance.
The fishing spider can walk on water. It can also row, sail, and dive. By trapping air bubbles on its legs, it can breathe underwater for half an hour.
Like many amphibians, tadpoles stay hidden during the day and don’t become active until night, when they are harder for predators to spot.
Even if the six-spotted fishing spider lets this slippery tadpole slip by, chances are high it will get the next one that swims by.
Nichole LeClair Terrill