by syaffolee

I stumbled on the “famous abu-shabat, the terror of the Soudan in the way of spiders, as large as your hand and ten times more venomous than a scorpion” while reading a Nature paper. I’m fascinated by grotesque creatures. By just looking at them, you wouldn’t know that we humans are related to them at all.

The solpuga or “sun spider” in Latin means “fleeing from the sun”. Another name the solpuga goes by is the “windscorpion”. Its abdomen is segmented and appears to have ten legs although one pair is really the pedipalps, and solifugids like to gorge themselves until they nearly pop. Some species can even “swim” in the sand. More info and pictures can be found on arachnology.org.

Of course, it’s one thing to be interested in spiders intellectually. However, if I saw “the terror of the Soudan” scurrying across my bathroom floor, I’d probably bring down the house with my screams.