How Do Spiders Create Babies?
Several species of spiders lay eggs in silk egg sacs. These can range in size from a dime to a soccer ball. Some species of spiders put the eggs in their web, while others use the sacs as overwintering sites. The eggs can vary in color, and the number of eggs inside a sac may be four to 600.
Some female spiders carry the egg sac on their backs, while others guard the egg sac until it is hatched. Most spiders make elaborate egg sacs made of silk. They are usually covered with a silk ‘blanket’ and secured in a web.
Several species of spiders take care of their babies, providing them with food. They re-feed them by regurgitating food, or by capturing bugs. For some species, these baby spiders are prey. Many are also eaten by other insects, birds, and mammals with mammaries.
During the first few days, the hatchlings cluster together. But then, they start to disperse. In some cases, they disperse by ballooning. As they grow, they molt multiple times. Those that survive are able to find a new home.
Some spider species take care of their babies for several weeks. Others are unable to molt and die. This could be because of a faulty hormone balance. Alternatively, the young spiderlings may become defenseless and fall victim to a predator.
Some females will even eat their own offspring. Other females will leave the sac to keep their babies safe until they are ready to molt.