The forecaster spider is an animal that was used to build long-term weather forecasts. Forecasters gained their first fame in the 18th century. In 1794, one of Napoleon's generals, General Pishegru, led an army on a campaign against Holland. The weather suddenly turned bad, the rain washed out the roads, it was impossible to go further, and the commander decided to temporarily stop the campaign, soon received information that frost would come and ice would shackle the rivers. The prediction came true. A week later, the weather turned bad again. But the general received again a report of changes in the weather, which came true. And the general fulfilled his task, advancing in time deep into enemy territory along the frozen rivers. Where did the predictions come from? Disgraced General Katremer, who was soon released at the request of Pishegru, sent reports from prison. For 7 years, Katremer watched the spiders in prison. Here are the conclusions that the general made from his observations. If the spiders do not weave their webs - to rain with a strong wind. Radial spider webs - to the end of the storm in half a day. If the spider stopped and destroyed a third of the web, it will be windy without precipitation. Big web - for clear and sunny weather. Short thin threads do not exclude the possibility of weather changes several times a day. The spider sits motionless in the center of the web - to bad weather. In the evening, the spider descends along its web down to the warmth. Spiders before frost are intensively weaving a web. The spider sits in the middle of the web - in bad weather, hides, in front of the rain. The spider is hiding in the corner - towards the rain. If the spider left its shelter in the evening and began to make new nets, it means that tomorrow it will be warm and good weather. If a spider comes out to revise in the morning or in the hot middle of the day, bad weather can be expected. A spider went hunting in the heat - to bad weather. If the spiders begin to weave cobwebs during the rain, the rain will end soon. A cross spider in front of a strong wind breaks the main threads, from the side from which the wind blows. Creeps into his house in the rain. A lot of cobwebs are flying - the summer will be hot. There is a lot of cobwebs in Indian summer - towards a clear autumn and cold winter. Towards warming, the cobweb weaves in the south, to the cooling in the north.
In the 1870s, observations were conducted by another prisoner, Pyotr Polivanov, who was sentenced to life imprisonment. One day, sitting in a cell, he noticed a spider, and was very happy about his appearance. The inmate looked after the insect, fed it and observed its behavior. The spider climbed onto a finger, allowed itself to be stroked on the back, touched by its paws, showing its confidence. To prevent the spider from getting too fat, the prisoner destroyed the woven web. And the spider spun again. Each time the web had a new pattern. It seemed that the spider was deliberately weaving different patterns to surprise its friend. There was a spider and self-critical: sometimes he stopped in the middle of work, walked around, as if evaluating his work, and then destroyed everything. The new pattern turned out to be more perfect than the previous one. The prisoner devoted a significant part of his memoirs to his amazing friendship and scientific and aesthetic observation.