AUSTRALIA (WJW) — A reptile park in Australia says it’s discovered a funnel web spider that is so large for its kind that experts dubbed it a “megaspider.”
According to a press release from Australian Reptile Park, the spider measures in at eight centimeters compared with the average size of one to five centimeters. It has fangs almost two centimeters in length; they could bite through a human fingernail.
“In my 30 plus years at the park, I have never seen a funnel web spider this big,” Michael Tate, Australian Reptile Park education officer, said in the release. “We are really keen to find out where she came from in hopes to find more massive spiders like her.”
According to the release, the park encourages residents to safely catch funnel spiders and turn them in for its antivenom program. The spiders are then milked, and the venom is made into antivenom. That antivenom saves about 300 lives per year.
This particular spider was turned in as part of a weekly collection at several drop-off points. It was in a Tupperware container with no labels. Experts are trying to determine where it came from in hopes of finding other large funnel web spiders.
“She is unusually large and if we can get the public to hand in more spiders like her, it will only result in more lives being saved due to the huge amount of venom they can produce,” said Tate.