Australia had a sister planet called Arachnia and evolution thought it would be a good idea to give some of the 8-legged residents sapience. And ant-like behaviours. Why?
They're giant-ass spiders that are also kinda like ants in behaviour. The workers are pretty small, being around the size of a baby and having relatively small fangs. Soldiers (who are used by the LIR) are car-sized and have big fangs. Queens are immobilized by egg production and have no fangs.
All sorts of colours can be seen on queens. Workers and soldiers always have the same patterns as their mothers as they're produced asexually, whereas queens have more variety as they're produced sexually.
Genetics and Reproduction
Workers and soldiers are produced asexually, whereas queens are produced sexually. In order to produce more queens, a queen will take lots of the sons of other queens (preferably from other hives for more genetic variety through either alliance deals or kidnapping, but when that proves to be a no-go option taking a nephew, uncle, etc will have to do) and pit them in death matches to determine which daddy would make the best queen to make the best soldiers and future daddies. Then [REDACTED]. Eggs take a few days to hatch.
Growth Rate & Stages
So, Mama Spider lays some eggs. Among these eggs are soldier and worker eggs: workers are female while soldiers are male. Soldiers take about 4 Earth years to reach their car-sized glory while workers need only a few months to reach their baby-sized glory. Once every year for their planet (791 days), every queen will lay 4-6 queen eggs among their other eggs. These queen young will be picked out and seperated to be put in their own chamber, where, upon hitting their equivalent to teenage years, they will massacre one another until only one is left standing, helping to ensure that the producers of all the hive's workers are up to the task. Despite this, most hives have numerous queens as only the twins kill one another, but they don't kill younger or older siblings (or their own young or parents), meaning they can deploy even more endless numbers against their foes.
Ecology and Habitats
Their home planet is home to utterly massive creepy crawlies thanks to the atmosphere they breathe being 47% oxygen at the same time as being notably denser than ours below the treetops (allowing for many things to glide on this air but nothing to be crushed under atmospheric pressure). The air is generally quite moist as well thanks to the many things that are breathing (wait a second... ewwww). To top it off, the planet has 60% of our gravity. These factors joyously come together for the creation of bonkerishly large creepy crawlies for the Arachs to compete with. Bonus fact: there are no trees here, just utterly massive ferns that look like and might as well be bonkersly massive trees (no seriously we got these things going 5km skywards). Thanks to the fact that their world would be utter darkness without them, poisonous luminescents are a thing! Yay! Candentis sanguisugae in particular hang off the sides of trees and can detect when the trees are being hit by sunlight based on the amount of energy they're able to leech from the tree. They can't actually control their glucose intake or use and so give off the excess energy as heat and light to their surroundings, preventing them from overheating. Most of them will die every "full moon night" (all moons being visible from treetops) as the light from this causes plants to open up their stomata without actually getting the energy they need, which these glowing buggers react to by glowing a lot when there isn't actually any energy to take in, causing them to die and release all their spores at once.
Dietary Needs and Habits
Carnivourous through and through, with there being just a few species that have developed poisons and bright colours that deter the Arachs. Will cannibalize their dead and members of other hives. They also farm giant worms by farming shrooms that they feed to the giant worms in "dirt pools" they make underground by removing a half-sphere of rock from the ground and flinging dirt and worms into it. If the worms are plentiful at the next feeding time (when they come to the surface), most of them are removed to be eaten.
Seasons aren't really a thing on their planet thanks to a general lack of an axial tilt buuut they do go slightly bonkers on "full moon nights", which happen every 0.5-11.5 Earth years, but reasonably so. They've learned to predict when such events are coming and have figured out how to actively help their glowing friends propagate.
Queens in order of seniority -> soldiers in order of seniority -> workers have no internal hierarchy.
If the LIR's use of them counts... the LIR has not technically taken control over all of their planet because they fear how dangerous Arachs could be to the rest of the intelligent races, instead controlling islands from which they send teams to steal Arach queen and soldier eggs (such teams are usually consist of hundreds of trained soldiers, most of whom don't return) for the creation of Arach armies that the LIR can use against its enemies like the CHG. Specifically, soldier Arachs are taken and deployed in combat with turrets on their backs, propellants on their belly-armour (to counter increased gravity) and oxygen masks on their faces (to counter decreased oxygen levels). Queens are used as soldier Arach factories (workers are either sold into the LIR market as slaves or terminated). These Arach soldiers are actually quite expensive as they'll die in most environments that are unlike their home planet's, needing specific suits as a result, and have to be trained in modern running-head-first-into-enemies=death warfare, but make up for it with obedience and the fact that you can stick utterly massive turrets on their backs and they'll be fine. These Arach soldiers use their wide vocal ability to voice-control their turrets while listening into where enemies are through their hearing.
Uses, Products & Exploitation
Workers made into slaves, soldiers into soldiers, queens into Arach factories, and all of them are eaten as delicacies - so nothing they don't already do to one another.
Geographic Origin and Distribution
Everywhere on their planet where there is food. Also some in the LIR but these are for military purposes rather than being proper inhabitors of anything.
Workers: semi-autonomous drones with no inventiveness of their own, soldiers = fairly intelligent for pack hunting, also the ones who come up with ideas for the workers, queens = calculatingly controlling their spawn with specific pheromone releases and commanding them to do specific things to ensure the best outcome for them and the hive.
Perception and Sensory Capabilities
They can see about as much of the electromagnetic spectrum as us buuut have hearing that is beyond belief and the ability to produce an endless array of different sounds... this combines well with their instinctive language.
Symbiotic and Parasitic organisms
I guess the worms could be considered symbiotic because being farmed might be considered better than just outright massacred (wait... shepherd = systematically kills a chunk of the flock to feed numerous ones of its species, wolf = just killing one or two every once in a while to feed itself and its pack... which is better?). There are all sorts of smol-boy creatures that steal their food within hives but these are actively killed.
Civilization and Culture
Who needs names when sound control is so easy for these dudes that they can make specific fellows hear what they say when others don't?
The LIR or League of Intelligent Races and some super-hives.
Queen is queen, male sexiness is based on being the last left from that massive fight for the right to mate with a queen.
Queen lays lots of eggs while soldier goes and yeets enemies to death... Huh.
Male courts female by surviving that orgy of death that she organizes.
Males die after mating. There is no relationship.
Average Technological Level
Yo, nes, yaybe, naybe, mo, mes... some hives have some LIR stuff they muck around with while others have the amazing technology of covering soldiers in their own webs and then covering those webs with hard objects like flat rocks for a combo of hard defense and shock absorbtion (dried web is very good for absorbing shock as it's kinda like leather).
Major Language Groups and Dialects
Instinctive language that makes negotiations between hives very easy.
Common Etiquette Rules
Queens eat first, soldiers second, workers last. There's no real etiquette beyond that.
Common Dress Code
Make sure your web-camouflage clothing doesn't have any dangerous shrooms in it as you make it. Otherwise nada.
Culture and Cultural Heritage
Dafuq is culture!?
Common Customs, Traditions and Rituals
The tradition of the male death-pitting to decide who the daddy to the next queen is an old and instinctive tradition.
No hurting members of your hive or killing anything from a friendly hive.
So some pack-hunting spiders get more intelligent and start leaving females behind to produce eggs while they hunt... mutation and natural selection made some evolution happen and wahbam then there's a huge difference between males and females and workers exist and now some more evolution basically made them into ants.
Interspecies Relations and Assumptions
They don't like the LIR raiding parties and they don't like any of the species they share their world with. Hell they even hate anything that's from a different hive and sometimes the spawn of other queens in the same hive if there's a civil war.
Unknown but I bet the Earth origin portal was in Australia.
2 years workers, 20 years tops for soldiers (can die at any time while guarding workers and queen or launching attacks on threats), queens can go all the way to 200. (Earth years)
The LIR is kinda terrified of them so they're banned from leaving their home planet without being sterilized first.
Varies a lot: worker = a baby up to a large dog (they start working soon after hatching but grow after that, usually don't live to doggo size), soldier = fully grown at the size of a car, queen = a bus.
Light compared to their weight but still hecka heavy
Very strong compared to their mass and volume.
Body Tint, Colouring and Marking
Massively varied but not always visible as worker and soldier Arachs will cover themselves in their own webs and then cover those webs in leaves, dirt etc to become camouflaged.
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