Beef Wellington: a dish of beef, typically coated in pâté de foie gras, wrapped in puff pastry, and baked.
Bee Fwellington: a dish of raw bee, typically coated in pollen, wrapped in legs, and warmed in the sun.
“Crab spider” is a general term for many types of spiders that look and move like crabs, and many of them will eat bees. They don’t target bees specifically but will consume any type of invertebrate they can wrap their legs around.
I’m not a fan of spiders because they have too many legs. More importantly, when a creature’s eyes are arranged in rows, it creeps me out. But crab spiders attract my attention because I’ve watched them pluck foraging bees right out of the air and eat them, head first, with no social grace whatsoever.
The crab spiders don’t spin webs, but ambush invertebrates when they visit a flower. They paralyze their prey with a venomous bite between the head and thorax, which allows them to consume the meal at their leisure. The eight small eyes allow it to detect the slightest movement. True to their name, they can move crablike forward, sideways, and backwards. When prey comes close, their forelegs rise up to strike in crab fashion.
Many of the crab spiders, especially in the genus Misumena in the family Thomisidae, are able to change color to match the flower where they sit. The great camouflage allows them to easily snare a meal. When the spiders remain white while sitting on a flower of a different color, their coloring is thought to mimic bird droppings and, as such, they appear to be harmless.
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I saw a lime green spider that had caught a honey bee. It’s not the crab spider. It was the size of a mature black widow. I live in California. I have never seen a spider like that. It was much bigger than the bee. It really didn’t have a web. It barely webbed the bee. I have tried to identify it but I haven’t seen a picture that looked like it. Any ideas on the type of spider it was? Thanks, Joni
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