L.A. Unleashed

All things animal in Southern
California and beyond

« Previous Post | L.A. Unleashed Home | Next Post »

Arachnophobia abounds when giant spiders invade Australian town

It sounds like a remake of the campy horror movie, "Eight Legged Freaks."

But this is scarier, because it's really happening.

According to a Times of London story, giant venomous spiders have recently invaded the town of Bowen, Australia, startling and shocking residents just because of their size.

The spiders are eastern tarantulas, also called bird-eating spiders or whistling spiders because of the noise they make when aggravated.

The influx is believed to have been caused by recent heavy rains, which have pushed the spiders out of their natural habitats.

The arachnids can grow to be up to 2.5 inches long with a leg span of 6 inches, or larger than a man's palm.

While not deadly to humans, the spiders' venom has been known to kill dogs and cats.

Deadly or not, I don't think I'd want to find one of these wandering about my home or garden.  And I thought potato bugs were creepy.

-- Kelly Burgess

Photo: Two Australian spiders, with a coin for comparison; the tarantula on the right may be the same species as the ones invading Bowen. Credit: Associated Press

Comments () | Archives (7)

The comments to this entry are closed.

Cute! let's make a tarantulas pie for Mother Day :)

Shrug. So we've got big spiders here. Huntsman spiders can get that big, and they're really common all over (we've got a two inch one living in our lounge room, he's called Boris, and stays up high, else we'd probably trap him and put him outside). They're called Huntsman because they don't spin webs, they hunt for prey instead. Also not venomous, but will give a nasty bite if cornered.

Personally I worry more about the smaller spiders - the deadly redback, and the non-deadly but almost nastier whitetail - a bite from one of those results in necrosis of the flesh (sufficiently common that our inner-city house in Melbourne had one inside a few months ago). Neither species gets much longer than about an inch.

And then there's the snakes - nine out of the top ten deadliest snakes in the world I believe. Oh, and crocodiles and sharks, neither of which I intend to go anywhere near!

But when it comes down to it, if we can't cope with all these beasties, we shouldn't be living in their habitats. I can't stand people who bug spray absolutely everything they see - most bugs are helpful, and most are not harmful to us (whitetails get sprayed on sight though).

Crickey, that is big! I have seen trap door spiders that big in the spring in Bakersfield.

Apparently 10 spiders have been seen in the town. This is hardly an invasion!

I lived in Byron Bay, near Brisbane a few years ago. Nobody in the States believed me when I told them about flipping the light on at night to go to the bathroom and seeing one of these spiders the size of a CD! It's not so much their size which is scary, but the way they scuttle across a room making it hard to tell which direction their intended in going. They also don't make webs. They have little nests on the ground to grab and kill their prey.

Tarantulas are very cool.

I still call Australia home...we know how to live downunder!


Recommended on Facebook


In Case You Missed It...


Pet Adoption Resources

Recent Posts