Funnel-Web Spider from Australia: Caution!!!

Subject: Big beast spider
Location: Australia
January 16, 2014 2:49 am
I live in California, but a friend of mine on the internet lives in Australia and sends me pictures of various critters that live there, including this Australian spider. We were talking about spiders one day and he mentioned that the spiders where I am at are NOTHING compared to the big beast spiders he has there, and according to the picture of this monster spider, this seems to be true. He couldn’t tell me what kind of spider, but he said I could use this photo he sent me to find out. So what kind of terrifying beast spider do we have here? I can tell this thing is angry too…..The fangs on this thing are incredible, I think I will have nightmares for the rest of my life…..O_O;
Signature: Brittany

Male Funnel Web Spider
Male Funnel Web Spider

Dear Brittany,
Australia has several spiders that are considered especially dangerous.  We found a nearly identical image on the Australian Spiders website and it is identified as a male Funnel Web Spider,
Atrax robustus.  The Australian Spiders site indicates:  “The Sydney Funnel-web Spider (Atrax robustus) is one of 36 species of funnel-web spiders in Australia (and it’s the only one that causes trouble).  Funnel-web spiders prefer moist cool habitats and you find them in the south eastern regions of Australia. They live in silk lined burrows and crevices. Their hideouts can easily be identified by the characteristic trip lines radiating from the entrance of the burrow.  The Sydney Funnel-web Spider is mostly found within a radius of 160km from Sydney. (There have been occasional sightings a bit further away.)  It is large (up to 4.5 cm for just the body), black, aggressive, and has powerful fangs.”  The site also states:  “The male Sydney Funnel-web spider is the most dangerous of the Australian spiders. (This is unusual. Normally the female spiders are more dangerous). Actually, I’d say it is the only Australian spider that can be called dangerous at all.”  According to the Australian Museum website:  “Sydney Funnel-webs are shiny, dark brown to black spiders with finger-like spinnerets (silk-spinning organs) at the end of their abdomen. Males have a large mating spur projecting from the middle of their second pair of legs. If threatened, Sydney Funnel-webs show aggressive behaviour, rearing and displaying their impressive fangs.”  The spinnerets are prominently pictured in the image you provided.

2 thoughts on “Funnel-Web Spider from Australia: Caution!!!”

  1. Thanks for the identification. And my goodness so this beast spider is pretty much dangerous too. I’ll be sure to stay away from these beastly spiders if at some point I’m in Australia. ^^;


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