Archive for March, 2007

Plants with fangs

Wednesday, March 7th, 2007

Glenn King from the University of Queensland reckons that in the near future, plants could be genetically engineered to express spider venom as a way of fighting against crop pests. The pesticides would have no effect on mammals, and because they’re made of proteins, would breakdown naturally leaving no nasty chemical residue. Sweet!

However, I’m thinking that they’re not talking about using funnel web spider venom, because that certainly IS toxic to humans.

Spider chastity belt

Tuesday, March 6th, 2007

Some Germans recently did some research on spider copulation, as you do.

“Ve haff some goot news, unt some bad news”.

The bad news is that during sex 80% of the male spiders had their penis break off inside the female.

The good news is that the bit left behind acts as a plug, decreasing competion from subsequent suitors. It also means that the male spider got away in time before the female ate him!