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There are over 35,000 different species of spiders in the world and counting. We have spiders that jump, swim, and eat birds, and now a “cartwheeling spider” can be added to the list! Don’t worry just yet, however. Unless you are someone who dwells Moroccan desert’s late at night, you have nothing to worry about. Even if you did happen to run into Cebrennus Rechenbergi it would likely cartwheel away and not towards you!
Science Recorder reports the oh so catchy name comes from the German researcher who made the discovery Ingo Rechenbergi, who would’ve done a greater service to humanity had his last name been “cartwheelspider”. This spider lives within the sand, burrowing holes with its feelers and bristles. In all honesty, it just looks like a common tarantula, but it’s when it’s in danger that the difference is made clear. When threatened, Cebrennus Rechenbergi (really wish that guy had a easier last name) can cartwheel over 6.1 feet per second!
The feat comes at a great price to the spider, however. The real cap is unknown, but it’s said that performing this task anywhere between five to ten times a day will prove fatal to the acrobatic arachnid. It almost makes me feel bad for the creature, being able to do something so cool but then worrying you might die every time you try to showcase it. It would be a real buzz kill to show off this unique spider to the world, only to watch it die shortly thereafter. It would be a tragedy to lose such a unique creature.
Well, sort of unique anyway. There’s another acrobatic arachnid living in the African desert right now. Most everything about it is the same as our Cebrennus Rechenbergi except this spider has a different trick and a cooler name. Carpachne Aureoflava (such an awesome name to read out loud) does somersaults down hills to escape prey and travel faster. There’s even a “Golden Spider” (once again, an awesome name) capable of achieving the same cartwheeling effect in other deserts in the world! Researchers are looking further into the new species to see if the sand plays a factor in these two’s unique traits.