Snakes, spiders and other delightful animals

We have all heard stories of dangerous animals in Australia – it’s true!! We have only been here for 4 weeks and have already experienced some dangerous animals and heard of dangerous situations.

In her first year in Australia our daughter-in-law was bitten in the house by a little white spider called a whitetail (lampona cylindrata and lampona murina – the Latin names sound much more harmless!). Luckily, she recognised the danger and drove quickly to the hospital where she was given an antidote to the poison.
Outside our son’s front door, in a corner above the door, was sitting for several days a huntsman spider (sometimes known as a giant crab spider) – as we keep our shoes there, we have been sure to check the spider has not crept inside! They are not life-threatening but a bite is painful and causes heart palpitations! Last week we found a huntsman spider in the bathroom – our son was concerned because we had opened the window to let the steam out – don’t do that – the spiders will come in!! And when camping in the Grampians we found a huntsman spider in our tent!!
On returning from our trip to Adelaide we stayed 2 nights in a caravan park in Port Fairy. This is a lovely fishing port and holiday resort on the Great Ocean Road between Melbourne and Adelaide. One morning we found a spider by the toilet window – I took some toilet paper and quickly killed it by squeezing it hard in the paper and flushing it down the toilet (very rapidly in one movement!). Afterwards we looked it up on the Internet – Irmi is sure it was a funnel-web spider (very poisonous) and I was suddenly the hero!