Nature is an interesting thing, and we have to admit that it surprises us every time. A recent report has shown that bola spiders have a unique ability of catching prey, preferably male moths, and we love it.
These spiders are capable of luring male moths to a painful death by releasing sex pheromones similar to female moths. The males get excited when this scent is in the air and cannot resist following where it leads to. By the time, the poor males find out what is going on, they'll have the teeth of a Bola spider under their flesh.
We should point out that not every bola spider possesses the ability to lure moths with sex pheromones and that the scent released is not capable of tricking every moth. Some moths are only attracted to sex pheromones from their own species, so they are not easily fooled. The ones that are, well, they will likely become a potential meal for a bola spider lurking in the trees.
Admittedly, this knowledge of the bola spiders is quite interesting, more so because we have never heard of anything like it before. Usually, spiders tend to rely on their webs or physical hunting abilities to catch prey, not sex pheromones.
The question is, do moths have a defense to this new special spider powers. In fact, they do, though it is more of a problem with the bola spiders than anything else.
There are two types of moth flies, the Tetanolita mynesalis and the Lacinipolia renigera. Now, bola spiders tend to release sex pheromones that attract both moths in order to increase the chance of catching prey. However, it all comes down to the amount of pheromones the spiders' release.
If a bola spider releases a high concentrated amount of sex pheromones designed to attract mynesalis moths, it will scare off moths from the renigera family. As it stands, spiders that reduce the amount of mynesalis sex pheromones usually have better luck at catching prey.
Interestingly enough, only the mature female bola spiders are capable of catching moths in this manner. The younger females have to contend with the classic way of hunting while the males don't even eat. From birth, they are fully matured, and only live for a short while since their main goal is to reproduce.