According to a new study published today in the scientific journal PLOS ONE, fish-eating spiders "lurk near rivers, ponds, and swamps on every continent except Antarctica." The countdown for spiders to eventually eat us has begun.

"Fish may represent a 'big-ticket item' in the nutritional budget of semi-aquatic spiders," zoologist Martin Nyffeler, of the University of Basel in Switzerland, told Reuters. "Fish meat is high-quality prey regarding protein content and caloric value."

But they just kind of munch on the fish, right? From Reuters:

The spiders employ potent neurotoxins and enzymes to kill and digest fish. Semi-aquatic spiders — able to swim, dive and even walk on the water surface — lurk at the edges of shallow streams, lakes, ponds or swamps. They often anchor their hind legs to a stone or plant, with their front legs ready for the ambush on the water's surface.

After the spider snares a fish, it drags it to a dry place like a rock or tree trunk to begin the feeding process: pumping digestive enzymes into the fish and sucking out the dissolved tissue like a milkshake.


[Image via LiveScience]