Arachnophobia

blessmycottonsocks

Justified & Ancient
Joined
Dec 22, 2014
Messages
2,531
Likes
3,373
Points
154
Location
Wessex and Mercia
Given that a typical broom-head is approximately 3" / 8 cm wide, the spider's body looks to be around 2" / 5 cm in length. According to Wikipedia, that would put this specimen up there around the largest known size for this spider and would equate to a leg-span of almost 1 ft / 30 cm. You'd need quite a jam-jar to catch that beastie in!

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Giant_huntsman_spider
 

Bigphoot2

Carbon Based Infestation
Joined
Jul 30, 2005
Messages
5,493
Likes
11,895
Points
294
Location
Armenia City in the Sky
Scorpion on a train delays London to Edinburgh journey
Creature got free from passenger’s bag, leading to delay while carriage was checked



A scorpion. The one found on the train was taken to an exotic pet rescue. Photograph: Peter Parks/AFP/Getty Images
Press Association

Sunday 1 January 2017 18.58 GMTLast modified on Sunday 1 January 2017 22.00 GMT

  • View more sharing options
Shares
457

Rail passengers en route from London to Edinburgh were delayed after a scorpion was spotted on the train.

The unexpected cargo disrupted an Virgin Trains East Coast service heading to the Scottish capital on Sunday afternoon.

Harry Horton, a passenger on the train, said he first noticed something strange when people in the seats ahead of him started standing up and retreating.

“There was something going on at the end of the carriage and I couldn’t quite see what it was,” he said. “A lot of the passengers were up on their feet. All of a sudden a couple came down to my end [and] they said there’s a scorpion on the loose.”

A guard appeared and the scorpion was returned to an ice-cream container it had been stowed in, Horton said.

There was an eight-minute delay at Peterborough while the affected carriage containing about 20 people was sealed off and checked.

Horton said the scorpion appeared to belong to another passenger. “We weren’t quite clear why she had [it],” he said. “The police basically said to her: you’re either getting off here with your scorpion or we’re taking your scorpion from you. In the end she decided to give up the scorpion and give it to the police.”

A British Transport police spokeswoman said: “We were called at 2.56pm to a Virgin train from King’s Cross to Edinburgh and we met the train at Peterborough. A scorpion had escaped from a passenger’s bag, but it had been recaptured quickly and put in an ice-cream box. We have taken the scorpion to an exotic pet rescue in Peterborough.”
https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news...on-a-train-delays-london-to-edinburgh-journey
 

Krepostnoi

Crabbier than usual
Joined
Jul 9, 2012
Messages
2,380
Likes
3,839
Points
159

GNC

King-Sized Canary
Joined
Aug 25, 2001
Messages
25,654
Likes
9,384
Points
284
There was a bit on a recent episode of QI that got me wondering. They pointed out that when you put a spider you've found in your house outside, what you have done is doomed a house spider to die. Now setting aside the issue that I thought I was being kind to these little monsters when I have in fact staged a decades-long massacre - how do the house spiders get into the houses (or other buildings) in the first place?

Spiders have been around far longer than houses, but if this variety dies if it is outside, how do they populate a house in the first place? They have to come from somewhere, but if I move into a newly built house, away from older houses, how did the house spiders get in when they would expire without a roof over their head? Do they take a taxi? Any ideas?
 

Mythopoeika

I am a meat popsicle
Joined
Sep 18, 2001
Messages
32,960
Likes
17,212
Points
309
Location
Inside a starship, watching puny humans from afar
There was a bit on a recent episode of QI that got me wondering. They pointed out that when you put a spider you've found in your house outside, what you have done is doomed a house spider to die. Now setting aside the issue that I thought I was being kind to these little monsters when I have in fact staged a decades-long massacre - how do the house spiders get into the houses (or other buildings) in the first place?

Spiders have been around far longer than houses, but if this variety dies if it is outside, how do they populate a house in the first place? They have to come from somewhere, but if I move into a newly built house, away from older houses, how did the house spiders get in when they would expire without a roof over their head? Do they take a taxi? Any ideas?
They can climb in through the holes in air bricks, through holes in mortice locks, cracks under doors. One technique I've seen them employ a lot is to weave a bit of web on a door, then when somebody opens the door, they swing into the house on what's left of the web. It's like they know what the door is for.
 

GNC

King-Sized Canary
Joined
Aug 25, 2001
Messages
25,654
Likes
9,384
Points
284
Yeah, but if outside kills them, how do they get from an old house into a new house? How do they survive the journey?
 

GNC

King-Sized Canary
Joined
Aug 25, 2001
Messages
25,654
Likes
9,384
Points
284
A friend of mine posited that the house spiders travel through pipes. Possible? They can end up stranded in baths, I suppose.
 

PeteByrdie

Privateer in the service of Princess Frideswide
Joined
Jan 19, 2014
Messages
2,026
Likes
1,528
Points
159
There was a bit on a recent episode of QI that got me wondering. They pointed out that when you put a spider you've found in your house outside, what you have done is doomed a house spider to die. Now setting aside the issue that I thought I was being kind to these little monsters when I have in fact staged a decades-long massacre - how do the house spiders get into the houses (or other buildings) in the first place?

Spiders have been around far longer than houses, but if this variety dies if it is outside, how do they populate a house in the first place? They have to come from somewhere, but if I move into a newly built house, away from older houses, how did the house spiders get in when they would expire without a roof over their head? Do they take a taxi? Any ideas?
We tend to notice house spiders most in late summer when they're looking to hook up. Most of the time they're ensconced in nooks and crannies in our houses. Only a small percentage of the ones we see in 'house spider season' have come from outdoors, and that's when they're wandering around looking for a mate when it still hasn't got particularly cold out. Once they've done the nasty, of course, their spiderlings will settle down somewhere and grow up in your house, and you probably won't see them until they get randy in their first mating season. Throughout most of the year, house spiders don't move much. They make their webs and stay around them as long as they're infrequently disturbed.
 

GNC

King-Sized Canary
Joined
Aug 25, 2001
Messages
25,654
Likes
9,384
Points
284
Yeah, but... if they're resistant to long journeys, how do they get into new buildings from old ones?
 

PeteByrdie

Privateer in the service of Princess Frideswide
Joined
Jan 19, 2014
Messages
2,026
Likes
1,528
Points
159
Yeah, but... if they're resistant to long journeys, how do they get into new buildings from old ones?
I've seen spiders coming through an air vent in my room. Otherwise, there are always times a window or door is left open. I believe the eggs of some species can be carried in on clothes or by pets. I'll admit it seems odd you rarely catch a spider on its way into a house, yet there always seems a plentiful supply of the little buggers. However, they're very aware of movement, and probably don't move much if they perceive you moving around.
 

LordRsmacker

Abominable Snowman
Joined
May 1, 2006
Messages
600
Likes
212
Points
59
I probably have posted this little tale before, I seem to have posted it on various Forums over the years, but I'll type it again, it seems to have a cathartic effect for me.

Anyway, my brother's mate is one of those fellows who keeps various exotic pets, and being a bit of an expert, is the bloke who gets the call when the local police/vets/council/RSPCA end up with some creature which needs looking after temporarily - snakes, lizards etc and, of course...spiders.

Well, one night, some years back, he gets a call that Mr Plod wants him to go to a house they have just raided, as there's a beast loose in the house and it's hindering the search for contraband. No problem, he trundles round and is bemused to see all the policemen outside the house waiting for him.
"It's a spider...an effing HUGE spider, running around the front room" says one copper.
"Sure. Sure." he smiles, smugly. "No problem" and steps into the house.

So, there's a large glass tank on its side, too big to pick up on his own, presumably knocked over when the householder was resisting arrest. He looks around and his eyes alight on a HUGE spider in the corner of the room, bigger than he's ever seen. So big that he thinks it isn't real.
Slightly shaken, he also spots a large box and knows that any self-respecting spider will gladly head into a dark hidey-hole rather than sitting in the wide open, so tilts it up in front of the beast.

The spider contemplates it for a while, then oh-so-slowly decides it looks OK and begins to walk towards the darkness. By now, a few brave policemen are in the room, but not coming too close. Wanting to wrap this up and get back to the pub, our hero decides to just nudge the spider along its way from behind with the box lid.

I'm told that he was looking at the officers and telling them it was all under control, when the nudged spider put on a huge burst of speed, but rather than piling into the box, it shot around the edge, up his arm and into the open neck of his polo shirt, before he could react.
He screamed, the police screamed (and went through the front door like the Keystone Kops) and I screamed when I was told the story...and I've never managed to find out quite how he kept calm enough to remove this creature without harming it or terminally shitting his pants. Me, I'd have been dead, no two ways about it.

IIRC, he had encountered a Goliath Bird-Eating Spider which up until very recently had been almost unheard of in private collections, which is why he had been totally unprepared for the speed - apparently Tarantulas, with which he was familiar, amble along at nowhere near the same rate of knots.

Fuck that.
 

escargot

Beloved of Ra
Joined
Aug 24, 2001
Messages
23,436
Likes
15,399
Points
309
apparently Tarantulas, with which he was familiar, amble along at nowhere near the same rate of knots.
I dunno, the ex once agreed to look after one for his brother who'd gone on holiday. I'd have refused to have it as we had a new baby and other young children. He sprang it on me though so I said 'OK as long as it stays in its tank!'

Of course he let it out after I went to bed. It ran off up the wall and hid behind the top of the curtain. Took him until the early hours to retrieve it. It was like an eight-legged greased Usain Bolt.

It was years before he admitted what'd happened, and that was a slip of the tongue. I'd have stuffed the thing down his throat, tank and all.
 

Bigphoot2

Carbon Based Infestation
Joined
Jul 30, 2005
Messages
5,493
Likes
11,895
Points
294
Location
Armenia City in the Sky
Australian spider bite boy saved by massive anti-venom dose
Share
Image copyrightAUSTRALIAN REPTILE PARK
Image captionFunnel-webs are among the most dangerous spiders in the world
A 10-year-old Australian boy has survived being bitten by one of the world's most venomous spiders after being treated with 12 vials of anti-venom, reports say.

It is thought to be one of the largest doses of anti-venom ever administered in Australia.

Matthew Mitchell was bitten on his finger by a funnel-web spider while helping his father clear out a shed.

He suffered multiple seizures, dilated eyes and began frothing at the mouth.

"It sort of clawed onto me and all the legs and everything crawled around my finger and I couldn't get it off," he told Friday's Australian Daily Telegraph.

Image copyrightGETTY IMAGES
Image captionFebruary and March are peak breeding times for funnel-webs
Matthew's family used his shirt as a tourniquet to curtail the spread of the venom as he was rushed to hospital.

The dose of anti-venom is believed to be three larger more than any other survivor in living memory, the Telegraph said.

The spider has been captured and taken to the Australian Reptile Park near Sydney, where it is now being used in a venom-milking programme.

The park's general manager Tim Faulkner said Matthew was "as lucky as they get".

February and March are the peak breeding season for many funnel-web species with males - five times more venous than their female counterparts - being particularly aggressive.

Find out more about spiders’ impressive skills - from BBC iWonder


The small and deadly funnel-web spider
  • Named after their irregularly-shaped webs, funnel-web spiders live in moist habitats - such as under logs or shrubbery - or rotting parts of trees
  • There are 40 species, not all of which are dangerous
  • The Sydney Funnel-web Spider, is probably responsible for most recorded deaths and the most serious bites
  • They sometimes fall into swimming pools, where they can live up to 30 hours under water
  • Their venom can lead to heart collapse, affect the nervous system and intestines, and cause difficulty in breathing
  • There have been 13 recorded deaths from funnel-web spider bites in Australia - nobody has died since an anti-venom programme began
  • Most species live in wet forest regions of the east coast and highlands of Australia, from Tasmania to north Queensland
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-australia-39075961
 
Top