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Thursday, April 7, 2011

Weird news - Spiders killing trees by enveloping them with webs after floods

Was browsing around when I came across these extraordinary photos. In the year 2010, there was a series of massive floods in Pakistan; these floods occurred for days and weeks at a time, and caused wide-spread death and destruction. These floods also inundated wide sections of the country, including fields (which are typically low lying regions). As a result of all this, an unusual phenomenon was seen, something that you would see in some B-grade horror Hollywood movies. Imagine whole trees infested by spiders, with the trees totally covered by large spider webs (a communal mission by spiders to cover entire trees). One byproduct of this was that many trees covered by these webs did not get adequate nutrition or were impacted by the spiders, and died; here, in this report, you can see photos of these trees and wonder as to how this happened (link to article):

Trees shrouded in ghostly cocoons line the edges of a submerged farm field in the Pakistani village of Sindh, where 2010's massive floods drove millions of spiders into the trees to spin their webs.
Beginning last July, unprecedented monsoons dropped nearly ten years' worth of rainfall on Pakistan in one week, swelling the country's rivers. The water was slow to recede, creating vast pools of stagnant water across the countryside.

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