Something Feral

Digging up the flower-beds.


Thursday, May 7, 2009

Or, why I will never emigrate Down Under


The Aussies are wonderful folk, but there are just too many venomous, foul-tempered creatures native to the area that make it inhospitable for human habitation. Also, they have critters like this:
Scores of eastern tarantulas, which are known as “bird-eating spiders” and can grow larger than the palm of a man’s hand, have begun crawling out from gardens and venturing into public spaces in Bowen, a coastal town about 700 miles northwest of Brisbane...

While not deadly like other Australian spiders, the eastern tarantulas are venomous and can grow up to 6cm (2.4in) long with a leg span of 16cm (6.3in). Despite their common name, they do not eat birds, but can kill a dog with one bite, and make a human very sick.

They are also known as whistling or barking spiders for the hissing noise they emit when they are disturbed or aggravated at close range.
And now they're collecting en masse in the town square, cat-calling, making lewd faces at the ladies and causing the milk to sour?

No, no thank you. I don't like surprises, and spiders et al have a uncanny ability for surprise at the most awkward of times, and it just so happens that my least favorite kind of surprises are "potentially-lethal, maybe-hiding-in-your-shoe, maybe-hiding-in-the-laundry-or-perhaps-under-the-couch surprises". Combine that with a penchant for inexplicably congregating downtown, and that's a deal-breaker.

5 comments:

Elusive Wapiti said...

Where I come from, a 'barking spider' is something else entirely.

Elle said...

no no no no no no no no no no no no no.

MikeT said...

I recall seeing an aussie roasting the newspaper report saying that these things are 6cm, not 6in. 6cm is no big deal to me. That's what newspapers are for these days...

Something Feral said...

I chuckled a little bit at the "barking spiders", as that euphemism is prevalent out here too.

6cm body with 16cm leg-span is a pretty decent size for a spider. Only rarely do I find ones out here that would cause one to slip if they crushed it under foot, and these are consistently large enough to do that.

They could have it worse, I suppose: these spiders (also Australian) could be swarming...

Wonder Woman said...

It would make it less easy to step on with flip flops... eeeeeew.

Spiders are sneaky. I don't hate them. Not as much as all of our darn grasshoppers. EEEK! I also shriek at earth worms...

Okay, so any insect really isn't my thing. I'm such a chick sometimes :(