Spiders in High Rises

It’s been a couple months short of a year since I’ve last posted here. Yikes. Well, here’s to the first post here at Stay Curious for 2014.

This summer I have the awesome opportunity to work in Chicago. And for a brief week, my company paid for me to live in a high rise, which was really cool. I know full well that nice high rise and recent college graduate don’t go together. But while I was there, I noticed a bunch of spiders on my balcony. I wondered about them: do these spiders just crawl up to the 25th floor for giggles? What’s their deal?

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It turns out skyscrapers, which Chicago has no shortage of, act sort of like mountains and create upward drafts that blow all sorts of insects to the upper walls of the high rises. This abundance of bugs create a sort of haven for the spiders: plenty of food and less predators. So spiders gravitate there. Some spiders, especially the baby ones, even create balloon like webs out of their silk to take advantage of the same drafts that suck their natural preys to the upper echelon of Chicago. Nature!

(Reference: http://chicagoist.com/2012/07/12/baby_spiders_ballooning_post.php#photo-1)