Spiders are not only a common sight, but they can also be found living as pets with humans. They are opportunistic feeders, eating insects, small mammals, and birds. Some spiders have been known to eat human food, but most stay away.
The Washington Post recently published a report about the world’s spider population. According to the report, spiders consume as much as 800 million tons of prey each year. This amount is more than the combined weight of all adults on the planet. Adding kids to the mix adds another 70 million tons.
Spiders mainly eat insects and bugs. However, some larger species have been known to eat lizards, birds, and even small mammals.
When food is abundant, spiders will eat several times a day. When there is not much available, they will go days without food. To compensate for their lack of food, they will drink. As a result, spiders have a very complex filtering system. That way, the toxins in their prey will be liquified and not be passed into the intestines.
A study in the journal Science of Nature estimated that spiders eat as much meat and fish as humans do in a year. If the total biomass of all adult humans on the planet were to match the amount of food that spiders eat, then we could be in for some serious trouble.
Most of the spiders in the wild eat insects, but there are some species that are known to be vegetarian. These include the Orb weavers.