Photographer's Note

I took this picture at a village in Khompong Thom province, Cambodia, when me and my team made a report about this traditional food. I don't know the Latin name for this kind of spiders (anybody know?). This animal usually have their nest under the ground. Local people dig out the hole, take the spider out (usually only 1-2 spiders in a hole) and carefully break down its small tusk, to avoid of being bitten, that, according to the locals, can cause high fever for three days and may lead to death.

To be served as food, the spider's head is broken down by hand, then it's put into salty water and then into boiling coconut oil. It takes less than 10 minutes to get the spider fried and ready to eat. The taste? Like fried chicken meat, according to my lady guide who ate this, just after I took the picture. Just compare her finger nail to the fried spider.

A spider hunter can collect up to 30 live spiders a day and then sell them to a collector. A collector can have as many as 20 hunters just in a village. Just figure out how many spiders can be caught for this purpose in a year. I just wonder how could this kind of spider survive from extinction.

I can't find the exact time when local people start eating fried spider. I guessed that this habit was started during Vietnam war, but local people said that they had been eating long time before war.

I used macro mode, added contrast and saturation then cropped a bit to tighten the frame. Please comment..

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Additional Photos by Tomi Satryatomo (wisat) Silver Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 32 W: 0 N: 79] (432)
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