Adult Male

Adult Male
Name: unnamed
Species: Alvean Thornweb Spider
Birthday: Wednesday, November 1, 2017
Owner: birdiebeeps

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Not many people aside from arachnologists and healers are especially fond of thornweb spiders, and it is rare to see them even in the Keep. Many attribute this to their intimidating appearance, with sharp thorns, large eyes, and scuttling legs, but many also attribute their low popularity to the painful stings and bites they can give if mishandled. Enthusiasts adore them and often assure people that they are surprisingly social little creatures, often interacting with other members of their communal webs and producing elaborate, color-changing displays toward larger creatures, though whether for defense or some other form of communication, no one is quite sure. The spiders are generally difficult to train, but they can become accustomed to a person's presence over time. Those who keep large colonies can even "milk" the venom from their spines with the proper tools. Each spider produces only a tiny amount of venom, so specialized extraction spells are often used on the whole colony at once, but even then it can take weeks for the spiders to replenish their venom stores. Because of the effort involved in extracting the venom, and the lack of spider farmers, thornweb venom can go for a hefty price in potions markets.

Seeing them outside of their native habitat, one might imagine thornweb spiders easy to spot in their homeland of Alveus, with their bright markings and distinctive thorns. The thorns, however, are partly a means of camouflage, allowing the spiders to blend into the pale branches of bramble and berry bushes in the Alvean forests. If their hiding spot is compromised, these small spiders will change color, flashing their red marks with reflective blue and waving their bodies from side to side as though to strike. These spiders are generally harmless and only bite large animals if provoked. The venom in their mandibles is the same as that which exudes from their thorn-like abdominal spines, and though deadly to small insects, it merely causes a jolt of sharp pain for humans. Like many substances found in magical creatures, thornweb venom is useful for certain spells and potions. It can be used to excruciating effect without modification to cause brief, intense amounts of pain, but most magi decry this use of the venom. The more common and acceptable use is in pain-relief tonics and salves for healing burns.

Sprite art: Mysfytt | Description: PKGriffin