Caerostris darwini
©Barcroft Media

Darwin’s bark spider, is a ¾" (19mm) a type of orb spider, weaves webs that span rivers and lakes — one web reached 82 feet (25 meters) in length, giving the species the title of the world’s largest web spinner. The length of the webs allow the Darwin’s bark spider to capture insects (30 mayflies and dragonflies noted in one web) in a niche otherwise unexploited by spiders.

The silk of the species is also the strongest biomaterial ever encountered. The web is twice as resilient as the next strongest silk and 10 times tougher than Kevlar, the material used in bulletproof vests.

Scientists will continue to study the Darwin bark spider. Some researchers believe the spiders could one day benefit humans. They think the silk could be used to create artificial muscle tissue. Source

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Sometimes you have an itch you just have to scratch - in this elephant’s case on a conveniently parked car. The VW Polo and its two terrified occupants found themselves in the wrong place at the wrong time as the giant ellie stooped down to rub itself against the vehicle’s roof and bonnet. The incredible images were taken by Armand Grobler, 21, a field guide and lodge manager, in Pilanesburg National Park, South Africa. The two passengers were shaken up, but escaped without injury - although the same could not be said for their car. But after giving itself a good scratch, the elephant continued on it’s way itch free.

Picture: Armand Grobler/Barcroft Media (via Pictures of the day: 6 August 2014 - Telegraph)

(Photograph by Barcroft Media)

Sixty-stone Agee has formed an amazing bond with tamer Mark Dumas after he plucked her from a zoo as a cub to star in films and television ads.

The pair are so close they wrestle, kiss, nap and even go swimming with each other.

Mark is the only man who can swim with a polar bear.

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Mount Etna erupted on Dec. 3 in spectacular fashion, unleashing plumes of hot matter as high as two miles into the Italian sky. The eruption only lasted 50 minutes, covering the surrounding villages of Linguaglossa, Francavilla di Sicilia, Milazzo, Messina, and Reggio Calabria in ashes. Mount Etna had been dormant for two years. Photograph by Marco Restivo Barcroft Media/Landov.

A diver takes a picture of a friendly ocean sunfish (Latin name Mola mola) off the coast of San Diego, California. The elusive deep water fish, with its bulbous eyes, flat body and tiny fins, is an unusual sight in the blue waters of California. Mola mola are the heaviest known bony fish in the world and can weigh up to 2,000lb and measure up to 6ft in length. Picture: Daniel Botelho / Barcroft Media

(via Animal photos of the week - Telegraph)