creepy crawlies, part the second

This morning I killed a funnel web spider. Amazon that I am, I even did this barefoot (which is the stupidest known way to approach an aggressive spider that knows it's higher on the food chain than a human). A sharp reminder that summer is nigh, and I really can't afford to step outside the house without shoes, even if that "outside" is a deck a good 40 feet high. (Come on, spider, don't you know you're a ground dweller?!)

To be fair, it might not have been a funnel web. Identification now is impossible, because I used my brother's shoe to rather splattering effect. But it was bigger than a house spider, and blacker, and there's no other spider I know which will rear up to attack an exploratory poke with a broom. So I took no chances. I hate funnel webs. The ninjas are definitely after me.

9 thoughts on “creepy crawlies, part the second

  1. Bloody hell. So glad I live in the south. About the only spiders ninjas can throw at me are huntsmen (which run away), and white tails (which are tiny and squishable).

  2. You know of course… that Funnel Webs can bite through a finger nail… And as you noted, are very aggressive. You've just reminded me why I'm not interested in living in Sydney. πŸ™‚

  3. Tess: yeah, but the whole suspected necrosis thing with whitetails is a teensy worry, doncha think? Interestingly, the rabbit (who thinks all the world is really truly his best friend) tried to make the spider's acquaintance. He's very disappointed that I killed his newest friend.

    Chris: I know! We caught a full-grown female in the living room one year. One of my friends (clearly I associate with stupid people) decided it would be a good idea to shoo the spider outside with a christmas card. Ahem. You shoulda seen the venom dripping off the card. Needless to say, spider did not give any ground. At all. The worst time is days like today, hot and humid after a couple of days rain, so all the males have been flooded out of their nests. At least this one was only young.

  4. But white tails are recluses, a lot like huntsmen. I generally find them cowering in corners. And then I spray them.

    Redbacks generally don't come this far south, and when they do, they're the outdoors type anyway.

    And that is really quite scary and I'm staying down here forever. Ergh.

  5. reclusive spiders who like to be reclusive outside is fine by me. redbacks don't worry me, because they like to hang about in places i don't tend to like, myself. you know, places children like to explore, like the dark underside of a house, or a woodpile. huntsmen not scary as such, but they're so damn quick when they do run. at least it's normally away. (unless you're my brother, and you've been poking the hunstman with a golf club. then they run toward you.) funnel webs, though, they like to nest. if they get inside, they'll scramble into the pile of clothes you've left on the floor… *shudder*

  6. My story entry in the ABC's Rural Short Story competition this year involved a rather scary – yet humorous – spide incident. πŸ™‚ Was self-therapy I think. πŸ™‚

  7. I'm very interested in insects and such, and I'm quite intrigued – I think I'm going to go read up on this kind of spider. Do you have a lot of problems with poisonous spiders (that are dangerous to humans) in Australia? In the States, we've only got 2 kinds worth worrying about – the Black Widow, and the Brown Recluse. I found a Black Widow living in a pipe right outside my back door – I popped her in a jar and relocated her to a riverbank bordering an open field (so she wouldn't wander back into someone else's yard). Widows love water, so hopefully she stayed there, and isn't coming looking for me. ;P

  8. We have heaps of venomous spiders. A veritable bucketload. To go with the snakes and sea-critters that are similarly venomous. Australia is the Land o' Venom. The Venomous Research Unit is a good place to find all the venomous critters collected in the one place.

    The aussie Redback is actually a member of the same family as the Black Widow, so imagine a Widow with a tiny red marking on its back. They're worrying, but nothing like the Sydney funnel web.

    Happy researching!

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