Your dogs were probably OK, as funnelweb venom is only lethal to primates. (Although the mouse spider information I have doesn't specify that, it is related and the same anti-venene is used.) I can't find any references to them hunting mammals, in fact it seems they seldom leave their burrows.citizencane said:Maybe I was wrongto do so,but I killed it as I don't fancy having giant spiders leaping onto me and I was afraid for my 2 small dogs.
Are you sure it wasn't a lobster?glamour_dust said:Ok I tried to read through all the posts in this thread but got too shivery and had to stop. This happened to me yesterday. I was sitting in the staff room trying to enjoy my cinnamon yoghurt lunch(don't ask). Two of my male form students came to the staff room door wanting to speak to me. As I approached them, they said they had something to show me. When I was close enough one of them whipped out a humoungous black insect from behind his back and said "surprise!" I kid you not I screamed and ran back to my desk with record speed. The pranksters ran off quickly - laughing. The impression I got of the insect was a huge black, hard-bodied segmented thing, almost the size of a small kitten I swear. It had really long crawly legs, long waving antennae and a large ant-like head with eyes that turned to look at me as it was thrust towards my face. Ugliest thing I have ever seen, and I have no idea how my students could bear to hold it. I think one of the boys released it in the bushes behind the school's field, which is far enough away for my comfort. Eww. :eek!!!!:
Nope gncxx, it wasn't. It's head resembled an ant's only much bigger. It's body seemed to have the head, thorax, abdomen structure. Maybe I'll ask my students where they got it and if they know what it was next week.Are you sure it wasn't a lobster?
Why did I have to look? Now I am very, very unhappy.nohopesnodreams said:
Possibly. But remember also that our fuzzy little mammalian ancestors had the advantage not only of mammalian brains but also of those vastly superior brains able to function in TEAMS.AnthonyClifton said:Makes me wonder, though, if the fact that so many people find things like giant bugs and snakes and so on scary is the result of some kind of genetic memory from when our prehistoric small, furry and cute ancestors were stalked by these quite literal (to them at least) monsters. :shock:
Yes, but what about the even larger centipedes that must have been lurking about then? :shock:OldTimeRadio said:Possibly. But remember also that our fuzzy little mammalian ancestors had the advantage not only of mammalian brains but also of those vastly superior brains able to function in TEAMS.
For decades I conceptualized the mammals of the late Jurassic as living at the "mercy" of the great saurians. But the current concept is that it was our cute-little-rabbity-mousey ancestors who made the DINOSAURS' life hell!
My understanding is that even the larger dinos were no match for 50 or 75 "little fuzzies" with mammalian brains plus razor sharp teeth and talons, working as a TEAM. They killed the dino and ATE it.AnthonyClifton said:In what way would they have made the dino's lives hell? The only thing that comes to mind is stealing dino eggs or caches of food.
Suddenly, I'm reminded of the critters in Spielberg's Gremlins films.OldTimeRadio said:My understanding is that even the larger dinos were no match for 50 or 75 "little fuzzies" with mammalian brains plus razor sharp teeth and talons, working as a TEAM. They killed the dino and ATE it.
Most probably they also ate the eggs.
:shock: Are you insane!?!Dingo667 said:citizencane said:I was agast to see a humongous spider on the side of my house the other day,with a body easily the size of that hornet from hell, the asian one.
And very long , strong legs as I approached it , it saw me coming and leaped at me after raising it's fangs in a threatening manner.
I looked it up in a regional database and found that it was a funnelweb variety called a mouse spider, as it hunts mice and other small mammals,including birds and snakes. It is indigenous to this area.
When it hit the gound(after narrowly missing me!) it ran to a large hole that was surrounded by a webbing that coverd the surrounding soil for about a foot in diameter. It was the largest spider I have ever seen,and even bigger than a tarantula my neighbor once kept as a pet.
The page I found it on said they were extremely dangourous and had a combination of neuro and necrotoxins, and if bitten one should immediately call an ambulance.
Maybe I was wrongto do so,but I killed it as I don't fancy having giant spiders leaping onto me and I was afraid for my 2 small dogs.
It put up quite a fight even against spider spray, and attempted to jump on me as I sprayed into its lair , running at me and jumping at the can and my hand.
I was totally creeped out by it.
That is fascinating and very very sad as I absolutely adore spiders and that one seemed to have been a feisty one. Maybe its in spider heaven now, where there is the biggest net you can imagine with the biggest flies getting caught every second of the day... ahhhh
Perhaps during your childhood your home was under covert surveillance, and what you were seeing was not lightning bugs but the glowing tips of secret agents' cigarettes as they secretly followed your every move...fnordish said:thanks, at least now i know im not seeing things.
Life-threatening wasp stings boom
Lovers of the outdoors have been warned of a sharp rise in hospitalisations and deaths from wasp, bee and hornet stings.
Latest official figures show 843 people were admitted for medical care for stings in 2004/5 compared to 369 in the previous year.
Experts say the sudden increase could be due to a new invasive species of aggressive wasp from the Continent.
Advice is to take extra care to avoid stings, especially if you are allergic.
Professor Lars Chittka, an expert in behavioural ecology at Queen Mary College, University of London, said Britain had seen a rise in an invasive, aggressive species of wasp, called Dolichovespula media, in recent years.
"Likewise hornets are spreading quite a bit. To what extent these two species are responsible for the hospitalisations I do not know. But certainly if there are more of these stinging insects then there is more chance that they will contribute to it."
He thought it was unlikely that hornets would be the main culprit.
"Hornets look very threatening, they are very big and noisy but unless they are disturbed near the nest they are actually quite docile. They don't usually attack.
"The Dolichovespula is a slightly different story because they are reasonably aggressive and they build relatively small nests in trees and bushes at eye height."
He said this meant that gardeners could easily stumble across the nests and be attacked.
"That happens quite commonly because the wasps patrol on the surface of the nest and then fly in the face of people who come too near."
He said last year's death and hospital admission figures for stings, gathered by the Information Centre for health and social care and the Office for National Statistics, were outstandingly high.
Eight people died from insect stings in 2004 compared to an average of two for the previous four years.
Professor Chittka said: "Whether that trend continues this year is hard to say. By my own feeling I have seen fewer wasps this year than many others so I think it is unlikely.
"But usually most events happen at the end of summer when people are out and about and the wasp colonies are at their peak size and the wasps can't find as many natural food sources and turn to our ice-creams. That's when people have unpleasant encounters with them."
Although most stings were relatively harmless, some can be extremely dangerous and even deadly.
Bites in the throat and mouth can swell and compromise breathing. Some people are highly allergic to stings and can go into shock and die without treatment.
Experts advise that people do their best to avoid stings. Those who know they are allergic to stings should carry their medication with them. Anyone who is stung and develops a bad reaction should seek immediate medical attention.
Professor Chittka said: "The symptoms are pretty clear. People will feel dizzy, they might get hives all over their body outside the site where they were stung and they might have breathing difficulties. The important thing then is to get medical attention immediately and not to delay. If you wait too long you might die."
He also gave some practical advice on how to avoid stings.
"All stinging insects are most aggressive near their nests. If you find a nest, get someone professional in to exterminate it rather than trying it yourself.
"If there are wasps in the area and you are eating, look at what you are about to take a bite of.
"Also, don't flail your arms at the wasp. Instead make slow and calm movements."
Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2006/07/14 16:27:29 GMT
© BBC MMVI
Japanese finds scorpion in jeans
The scorpion's sting is painful but not life-threatening
A Japanese woman trying on jeans in a shop got a shock when she was stung by a scorpion hidden inside a pair.
The woman, on the southern island of Okinawa, ended up in hospital for five days as a result of the sting, which was not life-threatening.
Local health officials captured the 5cm (2 inch) scorpion, which was believed to be a Chinese bark scorpion.
It is thought to have travelled inside the jeans from China, where they were made.
Officials told the Mainichi Daily News that the woman, who was not named, felt a sudden pain in her right knee as she tried the trousers on.
When she rubbed the area with her hand, the scorpion then stung her right index finger.
Heh Heh Heh!ramonmercado said:A man-sized creepy crawly? I think that info should be suppressed! It could be enough to cause a heart attack to anyone with a creepy crawly phobia.