and there were legs. (Arachnogenesis 1:3)
And lo! I find the same spider again after 4 days, to see that it has regrown them.
Online searches showed me that limb regeneration is usually only possible among juvenile spiders, the notable exception to this being tarantulas. This was certainly not a fully mature Argiope, still having to go through a few molting stages to get there.
What’s fascinating is that the legs took but 4 days to develop that much. I wish I’d caught the complete cycle of regeneration. Just when you think that you know everything there is to know about spiders, boom. They hit you on the head again with some insane badassery.
Spiders recycle junk to build decoys, build webs of gold, cleverly use leaves as both housing and as traps, use stupidly simple or ingenuous escape techniques, travel invisible pathways and look as cute as kittens. Add regeneration of limbs to that list.
Metadata Canon Powershot G11. ISO 200. f/4.0 at 1/800 second and f/4.5 at 1/100 second. Edited using Picasa 3.8 and Adobe. Taken in December 2010 at my workplace near Bommasandra on the outskirts of Bangalore, India.