AUSTRALIA (WJW) – A reptile park in Australia says it has discovered a funnel web spider 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 8 centimeters compared with the average size of 1 to 5 centimeters. It has fangs almost 2 centimeters in length, capable of biting through a human fingernail.
The spider was described in the release as “what nightmares are made of.”
“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.
The spider that was found will not be milked since it’s female and the park only milks males.
The spider was turned in as part of a weekly collection at several drop-off points. It was in a Tupperware container with no labels. The park is hoping to find out who’s the “mystery donor” of the spider.
“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.