A spider is an arachnid, typically characterized by having eight legs and often known for spinning webs to catch prey. They belong to the class Arachnida and the order Araneae. Spiders are found worldwide in various habitats, ranging from forests and grasslands to deserts and even human dwellings. They play a crucial role in ecosystems by controlling insect populations.

Spiders have two body segments: the cephalothorax (combination of head and thorax) and the abdomen. They usually have multiple pairs of eyes, although the number and arrangement vary among species. Spiders also possess specialized structures called spinnerets located at the rear of their abdomen, which produce silk used for building webs, capturing prey, and constructing egg sacs.

While most spiders are harmless to humans, some species possess venom that they use to subdue prey. However, only a small fraction of spider species pose any significant danger to humans, with notable examples including the black widow and brown recluse spiders.

Spiders are primarily carnivorous, feeding on insects and other small arthropods. They use a variety of hunting techniques, including ambushing prey, actively chasing them down, or using their silk webs to ensnare victims.

In addition to their role in controlling insect populations, spiders have also inspired various cultural myths, fears, and symbolism throughout history. They feature prominently in literature, art, and folklore, often representing concepts like patience, cunning, or fear.

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