[care2] Darwin’s bark spider is very small and yet constructs webs with anchor lines spanning rivers. It was discovered in 2001 in Madagascar, but a recent paper documented that its silk is stronger than Kevlar. The extra strong silk is what makes it possible for the spider to make anchor lines that are very long and can bear the weight of the central web, its contents, and the spider. Researchers counted 32 prey in a single web. These prey had not yet been wrapped up by the spider, meaning the web has a huge capacity for catching insects at any moment.
The extremely strong silk allows the Darwin’s bark spider to have a strategy no other spider can employ. It builds its webs in habitats other spiders are incapable of using, which means it can catch food without having to compete with other spiders. Their webs are built directly over streams, rivers and lakes.