Spider silk is a protein fibre spun by spiders. Spiders use their silk to make webs or other structures, which function as nets to catch other animals, or as nests or cocoons to protect their offspring. They can also use their silk to suspend themselves.Many small spiders use silk threads for ballooning, the popular, though technically inaccurate, scientific term for the dynamic kiting spiderlings (mostly) use for dispersal. They extrude several threads into the air and let themselves be carried away by winds. Although most rides will end a few yards later, it seems to be a common way for spiders to invade islands. Many sailors have reported that spiders have been caught in their ship's sails, even when far from land. The extremely fine silk that spiders use for ballooning is known as gossamer.In some cases, spiders may even use silk as a source of food.Methods have been developed to collect silk from a spider by force.