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Discussion Starter #1
A warning for all those getting crix or locusts in boxes, please be aware that I found a nearly dead false widow spider in one of my boxes today.

These spiders give a very nasty bite and are an anaphalaxis risk in young and old.

Google them. Know what they look like and be aware of the possibility of them being in boxes. Check your boxes before opening.
 

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Good heads up, cheers
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I read that these spiders have been in this country for many years? So if true why is everyone talking about it now due to an article in a paper?

Yips they have been around for many years, but the weather this year was perfect for them breeding. They have also migrated a lot further up the country and many more of them are being found. A mini epidemic of them according to environmental sites.

Be aware of them.
 

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yea, they really only seem to be problem if you really aggravate them or touch them roughly,
Personally I've never been bitten by a spider in 21 years in the UK and 5 Years in Darwin NT Australia and there's proper widows and red backs there in most peoples gardens lol
but I guess if they are in a box of crix/ locusts you are more likely to put your hand near them...
 
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Discussion Starter #8
Hence why I said 'be aware' of them really.

I was brought up in Africa with the real widows, and played with spiders that turned out to be lethal lol...oops. No bites whatsoever.

But finding one locked up in close quarters in a locust box is a different matter. I think we all simply grab hold of the insert and shake the locusts off it, A spider under the insert would not be happy about that. Lucky the one in the box was pretty much dead and was only just twitching its legs. It got squished and flushed for good measure.


If you do find what you think might be a false widow, put a glass over it if its safe to do so and report to local environment agency, they want the reports to track the migration of the species. If its not safe to 'glass it'....then squish it.

Do not start wiping out every spider you see however, spiders are good guys and we need them.
 

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Well that's great advice 'squish it' just pick it up carefully and put it outside if you have a fear use a catch cup I can't see any situation where you would need to squish it for the sake of it supposedly being a false widow even though its likely its not.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Well that's great advice 'squish it' just pick it up carefully and put it outside if you have a fear use a catch cup I can't see any situation where you would need to squish it for the sake of it supposedly being a false widow even though its likely its not.

If your going to quote me then please do it properly.....

Read again.

I said...If you can't safely put a glass over it...

I also said....do not go around killing every spider you see...
 

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Im doomed then. All the spiders I find in our live food either get tossed out of the window into the garden.....or they get to run loose in the gecko room. Theres quite a few under my old benching and I dread to think how many behind the racks. Ive never found one in a RUB or viv. I have no idea what species they are but some a big juicy ones. I opened a box of medium size crix last week andvthere was a chunky spider gnawing on a good sized cricket. Could have put a saddle on him. He now lives in our garden.
 

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I wouldn't be to worried unless you were allergic to insect bites. Even then you would know what to do when in anaphylactic shock.
 
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Discussion Starter #13
Im doomed then. All the spiders I find in our live food either get tossed out of the window into the garden.....or they get to run loose in the gecko room. Theres quite a few under my old benching and I dread to think how many behind the racks. Ive never found one in a RUB or viv. I have no idea what species they are but some a big juicy ones. I opened a box of medium size crix last week andvthere was a chunky spider gnawing on a good sized cricket. Could have put a saddle on him. He now lives in our garden.
lol should have seen some of those monster hunters that came out of my bug room when we were revamping it...10 foot leg span...well maybe not ;p

We had a monster one living in the egg crates in the corner, I used to feed her once a week on a mealworm haha...

I'll put one into a viv if I get a fly or cricket issue though, let the spiders clean it up.

Stray spiders in the house are normally just left alone, unless their nighttime hunting path is across my computer desk, then they get moved to 'le booog room'

Had a female hunter take up residence in the roach colony earlier this year, to hatch her eggs...I did move that egg sack outside once they started to hatch out of it though. Would be a bit much to have that many running around ;p
 

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Grinning Gecko
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Ive got two concerns over this raised interest. a) Now the public has been made aware of the deadly spider invasion thousands of native friendly spiders are going to be needlessly squished. b) How long before the APA pick up another spurious link to the hobby....spreading this danger with every tub of live food. It doesnt take much for them to spin their web made up with threads of bs.
 

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If you cannot identify a spider, why assume it is a false widow?

Please, please, listen the folk who actually work on spiders (in this case = me) - there is basically zero risk from these spiders.

You shouldn't be killing any animal, especially if you can't identify them for certain. There's lots of spiders that look like "false widows" and for starters the ENTIRE GENUS steatoda are not all "false widows" despite what the papers will have you believe.

If papers ran the same headlines for things of equal danger to these spiders then we'd be awash with stories of killer peanuts and genocidal cat and horse hair.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
If you cannot identify a spider, why assume it is a false widow?

Please, please, listen the folk who actually work on spiders (in this case = me) - there is basically zero risk from these spiders.

You shouldn't be killing any animal, especially if you can't identify them for certain. There's lots of spiders that look like "false widows" and for starters the ENTIRE GENUS steatoda are not all "false widows" despite what the papers will have you believe.

If papers ran the same headlines for things of equal danger to these spiders then we'd be awash with stories of killer peanuts and genocidal cat and horse hair.

If you read back, I never once said 'assume its a false widow'. I did however say. do not go and wipe out any spider you see..we need them. I also never read the papers, 99% of every story is total bull, and the 1% is suspect. If I want information I go to the source material. In this case keys for the species.

The one I got in the box today was definitely a false widow, and not going by google pics either, since most of those are not, but are showing up in the search.

I did say. Be aware of them, simple.

check boxes for spiders before you open them, and if there is a spider in there, then go careful.


I would much rather be aware of something, than blissfully ignorant of the possibility of them being around. If people are made aware of the facts of false widows, then its also much less likely that they will randomly squish every spider that is near them and be able to identify one if they saw it.


These are also an invading species and not natural to the UK. Would you have people then in essence letting an invasive species loose in their back yard if they found one? hmmm.

As to what was posted earlier about 'pick it up and put it outside'...yeah..advise people to simply pick up a spider that could possibly be venemous and put it outside...great advice.



If you want over-reaction to things, then look at half the posts going on in these forums lately in reply to threads.....
 

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Funny this because in my last locust bulk bag there was also what looked VERY much like a false widow, but I wasnt sure and thought with all the hype I'm probably imagining it. Either way I chucked him out the bathroom window after trapping him in a glass (as 50-75 medium-sized deranged locusts hopped all around me and my bath, not sure what freaked me out more - I have a mild-medium spider phobia, nevermind what sort of spider).

Funny thing is I get a lot of huge horrible spiders in my house but I have never in all my years had one that has looked like a false widow, and suddenly after reading 100s of entertaining silly stories about false widows on Facebook RFUK (out of which my favourite was 'i saw this black furry thing chasing a mouse in my back garden and i'm 99% sure it was a fasle widow' :D ), one turns up in my locust bag. Think I jinxed it. :)
 
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Which species are we talking about ?

I don't understand why we are discussing the dangers of some unknown spider.
 

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Im doomed then. All the spiders I find in our live food either get tossed out of the window into the garden.....or they get to run loose in the gecko room. Theres quite a few under my old benching and I dread to think how many behind the racks. Ive never found one in a RUB or viv. I have no idea what species they are but some a big juicy ones. I opened a box of medium size crix last week andvthere was a chunky spider gnawing on a good sized cricket. Could have put a saddle on him. He now lives in our garden.
Any spiders that turn up in the crickets or anywhere else in the flat get fed to the frogs- they don't read the papers, so they don't know enough to be scared- they just eat them! :lol2:
 

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Considering some of the pet's kept by people on this site, a false widow is probably high up in the "cute & friendly category" :lol2:

Find spiders all the time, in the viv they go, my crested's don't read "The Sun", so they aren't worried by any scare stories.
 
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