Friday, December 21, 2012

If Shelob and Aragog had a baby...

The Deadly Speiders....

This weekend we had quite the experience - 3 big spiders in 3 days. Saturday I was washing the kitchen window sills when what to my wondering eyes did appear? 8 long legs and black eyes much too near!! Yeah - I looked up and saw this lovely (possibly lady) - sitting right above my head (luckily on the outside):

We will call it: Shelagog. It was super freaky, as I stated on Facebook I might have screamed a bit. Totally nuts. It was probably about 5-6 inches from the top of the front legs to the end of the back ones (at least). But, it didn't move, and it was outside, so we did what most crazy US hippies might - we took a ton of photos and left it out there so it would move on. However, when it wasn't there the next day I realized the benefits of knowing where the creepies are more than not knowing. Our friends who have lived here for a few years say they haven't seen anything like it here - our neighbors said that they only saw spiders that big when they lived in Africa. We're so lucky! :-S We are thinking the spider belongs to the family of Giant Crab Spiders or a Huntsman spider, but it certainly doesn't look like the for sure Huntsman spider that wandered out from under Michael's guitar the next day:
This one was FOR SURE a Huntsman spider, a good picture of them can be found here. This one was smaller than the first, maybe only 4-5 inches in legspan or so, it's hard to tell as my memory just says "Way too big for any spider to logically be!". Apparently they are somewhat harmless to humans (may have a bit of a toxic bite but they don't bite unless they have to) - and they hunt cockroaches, which is a BIG plus - but since it was in our house we were totally freaked. We tried to catch it to put it outside, but it was too big for a glass and we didn't have a large jar or anything so we ended up having to kill the poor thing. We called over our neighbor Haroeth (who knows martial arts, our hero!) and he helped us use probably half a can of bug spray (yuck!) to no avail - 5 mins later it was still running around, so - Haroeth got the dustpan and tried to smash it, but it really wasn't working, so he ended up having to use the handle of the pan to squish it. Michael had been dancing around on the stairs like a girl, and I had been across the room standing on the couch, so we were lots of help (wink, wink).
But - to Michael's credit, the next day, when he went to take out his bike from the garage, he saw spider #3 - a "baby" hunstman spider - only about 2 inches across - a bit bigger than a US half-dollar coin I would guess. He was brave and bold and used the broom to sweep it out of the garage - he said it would hop around while he tried to get it outside, it wasn't too happy about it.

So, there you have it. I had heard these would be out here (kinda), but you really don't understand quite what it is like until you experience it. Woohoo for experience! (Blarg)


Mike, Mary, Maggie, and Max said...

No thanks! I am itching all over just thinking about those spiders! I would have screamed so loud the next City would have heard it.

Sherri said...

Oh my goodness...that's all I have to say!!!

Matt N. said...

I know it's all the way around the world... But I'm pretty sure I got a photo of this spider's cousin in Haiti!
They have spiders just like these. I even have a photo of one with the eye glaring and all.
The first time I saw one was in an investigator's home. We were teaching this guy and I happened to look down at the bottom of a doorway a few feet away. My eye caught the biggest spider I had ever seen that wasn't a tarantula! Nastily unnerving. I looked back up at our investigator to tell him there was a huge spider there, and not a second later I looked back down and there was no sign of it anywhere! Gone in a split second!
I told this guy it was about 2 1/2 or 3" in diameter. He said it was just a baby and not to worry about them (sure) unless they are adults and showed me how big they can get... My eyes were wide open and I just wanted to tuck my pants into my socks right then.
I'm all about avoiding killing things as well... but there are a few exceptions for me where I'll even make a point to get them! - Wasps/yellow jackets, centipedes and some spiders... this guy would be on my list every time!