Enlarge / Of all the aquatic spiders, the diving bell spider is the only one known to survive almost entirely underwater, using bubbles of air it brings down from the surface. (credit: Oxford Scientific via Getty)

Shrubbery, toolsheds, basements—these are places one might expect to find spiders. But what about the beach? Or in a stream? Some spiders make their homes near or, more rarely, in water: tucking into the base of kelp stalks, spinning watertight cocoons in ponds or lakes, hiding under pebbles at the seaside or creek bank.

“Spiders are surprisingly adaptable, which is one of the reasons they can inhabit this environment,” says Ximena Nelson, a behavioral biologist at the University of Canterbury in Christchurch, New Zealand.

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