Japanese Spider Battles

As the fear of spiders affects over 30% of Americans, it is safe to suggest that you don’t plan a vacation to Kajiki, Kagoshima, Japan, in June. Each summer, the city partakes in Kumo Gassen, directly translated to mean Spider Battles, a tradition going back 400 years!

Townspeople young and old buy or capture female Argiope amoena spiders, affectionately called samurai spiders, rearing and training them in their homes. Some even allow their prized pets to roam freely around their living quarters!

The large purple and yellow spiders fight two at a time in a tournament, and the last spider standing is the winner.

There are three ways to win:

  1. Bite first
  2. Wrap your opponent in a web
  3. Snap your opponent’s thread

spider battles

Not to worry! The spiders don’t kill each other, and sharp-eyed referees stop aggressive fights— with their bare hands—before the spiders can hurt each other.

spider battles

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