What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Large spider in Roatan, Honduras
Sun, Jun 28, 2009 at 10:18 AM
We came across this spider crossing the road at night in Roatan Honduras. We were going to put something next to it to measure it, but right after I snapped the picture, a local ran up and stomped on it.
From leg-tip to leg-tip was about 5-6 inches.
-cd
Roatan Honduras

Giant Crab Spider

Giant Crab Spider

Dear cd,
Those locals have no respect for wildlife.  We believe this is a Giant Crab Spider in the family Sparassidae, possibly the Banana Spider or Huntsman Spider, Heteropoda venatoria.  That species is native to Asia, but has spread around the world in warmer countries with the popularity of bananas and the resulting agriculture and trade.  It is a hunting species that is nocturnal.  We would gladly defer to an expert who can provide more conclusive information.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination
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6 Responses to Giant Crab Spider from Honduras

  1. Medjai says:

    Cd, poor spider… I’m from Honduras and I’m an active protector of all wild species in my country, It’s saddening how most people in my country disregard life so easilly. Personally I’ve always wanted to see one of these Giant Crab Spiders but haven’t had any luck in any of our islands.

    Thank you for the picture now I am certain we have these.

    Best regards,

    Medjai

  2. AmericanAbroad says:

    Spotted one of these while showering in my home here in Comayagua last night… Nearly scared me to death – it reacted in a fearful manner as well.
    I didn’t snap a picture of it, I have been hunting the internet all day today trying to find out if I was in danger or just overly cautious for nothing.
    Two of my step-children saw it, told me it was a tarantula and ran away. (After my step-son shoved his sister, my youngest step-child, towards the spider to which she reacted with terror and ran as fast as she could.)
    My wife asked me why I didn’t kill it and I _mostly_ jokingly said because it could probably block my attack and get the upper-hand on me…

    I made deliberate, non-aggressive movement to reach my shampoo and body wash and closed the door tightly. I then completed my shower, and very gingerly opened the door to see if the spider was gone before putting my soaps away… I didn’t see it and so of course my arachnaphobic brain kicked in and the hair on my legs started tingling… I poured some extra water on my feet and ran inside.

    Turns out, after researching this thing and finding this page and several other images that matched, my wife realized I am less macho than she thought, haha. Oh well, at least I didn’t kill it and it can continue eating all the bugs around the yard for us. :)

    • bugman says:

      Thanks for the very amusing comment. Huntsman Spiders are shy, nocturnal hunters, and they are not considered dangerous to humans.

  3. AmericanAbroad says:

    I come bearing photographic evidence of a much smaller, definitely same classification, of spider as the one that left me if stunned fear. :)

    This guy is ~5-6x smaller than the first one I encountered, which was a major relief. However, the picture is blurry and oddly lit because he decided to visit our indoor bathroom and so I used a laptop for lighting and my DROID MOTO X as a camera.

    I made the assumption of male vs. female based on size difference. (It is extreme in my two sightings.)
    Sadly the large one has not returned. She may have been just as creeped out by me, in the end. – I wanted a picture to show off… :(

    http://imgur.com/yYJtTdq — This is a cropped picture. I have nothing for size comparison, but it is about the size of an American Half-Dollar coin from long ago.
    This is indoors. Behind our bathroom door.

  4. AmericanAbroad says:

    Yet another sighting of the smaller one. :) He is missing a leg now. Not sure if this was the case on the first encounter or not. This time MUCH closer than I would normally be comfortable with.
    Again, outside for a shower. This time it was 0830 here in Comayagua and he was under the bowl we use for scooping water from the “pila”(sp?) (large water basin, with laundry ripple thing).

    I picked it up, not paying any mind to that spot as I was scooping out dead bugs… turn to my left to place the bowl down and their sits ol’ 7 legs… He ran from me and I coaxed him up the wall. He cleaned himself, watched me shower and was gone by the time the soap was rinsed from my hair/face.

    I have pictures but imgur.com is down it appears… Oh well, not close enough to see details anyway. Just bizarre to see it in daylight.

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