Did you know there's a spider that lives underwater by making an air bubble? The diving bell spider is the only known species that does this. They live completely submerged in freshwater streams and ponds of Asia and Europe.
Here's how they do it: the spider weaves a fine net-like web under water, attached to several plants. Then it goes to the surface to get air. It traps air bubbles between the fine hairs on its body, swims down to its underwater web, and releases the bubbles under the web. The air bubbles rise and get trapped in the web. The spider continues to do this until the web contains an air bubble large enough to live in. Whenever it needs more air, the spider returns to the surface to get more.
Other than catching prey, which the spider does outside the bubble but still underwater, it spends its time in the bubble, where it eats its food, molts its exoskeleton, mates, lays its eggs, and raises its young.
Below is a diving bell spider depicted on a stamp from the country of Azerbaijan, which is on the Caspian Sea.
- Diving bell spider stamp - Post of Azerbaijan/Azermarka, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
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