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Even spiders have a strong sense of survival and great common sense…amazing is the word…

Spider Refuge

Picture of trees encased in spider webs after floods in Pakistan

Photograph courtesy Russell Watkins, U.K. Department for International Development

Trees shrouded in ghostly cocoons line the edges of a submerged farm field in the Pakistani village of Sindh, where 2010’s massive floods drove millions of spiders into the trees to spin their webs.

Beginning last July, unprecedented monsoons dropped nearly ten years’ worth of rainfall on Pakistan in one week, swelling the country’s rivers. The water was slow to recede, creating vast pools of stagnant water across the countryside. (See pictures of the Pakistan flood.)

“It was a very slow-motion kind of disaster,” said Russell Watkins, a multimedia editor with the U.K.’s Department for International Development (DFID), the organization tasked with managing Britain’s overseas aid programs.

According to Watkins, who photographed the trees during a trip to Pakistan last December, people in Sindh said they’d never seen this phenomenon before the flooding.

(See pictures: “World’s Biggest, Strongest Spider Webs Found.”)

—Ker Than

Published March 31, 2011