Earlier this week, the Australian Reptile Park issued a warning that the deadly funnel-web spider population is to boom at the beginning of the mating season.
Daniel Rumsey, a spokesperson of the Australian Reptile Park, said, “Because of the recent rain and now the hot days we are experiencing, funnel-web spiders will start moving around.”
He added, “Funnel-web spiders potentially are one of the most dangerous spiders on the planet, in terms of a bite toward a human.”
Since the 1980s, no one has died from a funnel-web spider bite in the country thanks to the anti-venom that is being offered by the Australian Reptile Park.
Funnel-web spiders can grow to up to 1 to 5 centimeters long.
The spiders are native to the east coast of Australia, where they build funnel-like webs around their burrows to pull in their prey.
The funnel-web spiders have powerful fangs that can pierce human skin and inject their venom.
Dieter Hochuli, an ecology and entomology professor at the University of Sydney, said, “These warmer times of year are when the males, who are more dangerous to humans, wander about at night looking for females.”
The funnel-web spiders enjoy the humid weather.
Recent heavy rains can flush them out of their burrows.
Rumsey, the spokesperson of the Australian Reptile Park, said people should capture rather than crush the spiders if they see them.
Captured spiders should be turned over to the Australian Reptile Park, who uses the venom of the spiders to make antidotes for the victims of the spiders.
In the statement Rumsey released, he said, “Just by donating a spider to the Australian Reptile Park, you are contributing to saving people’s lives.”
Rumsey said the spiders are very easy to catch as they can’t climb up plastic or glass materials.
You can use a kitchen spatula to scoop the spider into a jar, which should have some air holes so the spiders can breathe.