An Australian zoo is collecting a” mega ” specimen of one of the most endangered spiders

An Australian zoo is collecting a" mega " specimen of one of the most endangered spiders

His nickname says a lot about the size of the Beast : Megaspider. This Spider Newly resident of Australian Reptile Park based in Somersby Australia. It belongs to the genus Atrax robustus (In English, “Sydney funnel-web spider”) Considered one of the most dangerous for humans.

It’s been years since this Australian zoo implemented a comprehensive plan to collect and breed these Mykales. The goal: to restore their venom to produce its antidote and be able to treat bites. The establishment thus initiates regular calls to encourage the public to capture the samples they met (safely) and bring them in.

This is how the new spider came about. His measurements quickly jumped to the team’s eyes. This model is actually eight centimeters long, while the average oscillates between one and five centimeters. It also has chelicera – the famous “hooks” – its size is about two centimeters.

“Exceptionally large”

In my thirty years in the park, I have never seen a funnel web spider this big! She’s exceptionally tall”, Explained by Michael TateAustralian Reptile Park Resumed in a statement. Species Atrax robustus, Is in eastern Australia, identified by its dark, shiny and less hairy body.

A comparison between a recently collected Spider (right) and a medium-sized spider. © Australian Reptile Park

Active throughout the year, Michael lives in silk-lined vents and Burrows from which it springs to hunt its prey, mainly large insects. During the breeding season, males go looking for females, and it is not uncommon for them to access homes or even enter them.

However, once they are disturbed, these spiders, called aggressive, do not hesitate to cause bites with their powerful chelicera. Attributes, for the most difficult models, are capable of piercing a human nail. This is also probably “megaspider Although no member of the Australian zoo dares to enjoy it.

A mysterious appearance

The sample came in a blue box, and there was no mention of its provenance. The Australian Reptile Park has launched an appeal on social networks to try to identify its mysterious origins and those who captured it, hoping to be able to get other equally imposing Michaels.

If the public can trust us with more spiders like this, it will only save more lives thanks to the high levels of venom they can produce“, Michael Tate said. The Australian Reptile Park is the only structure in Australia to extract toxins from this species to counteract poisoning.

According to Australian Museum, Between 30 and 40 bitesAtrax robustus Are listed annually in the country. Although its venom is dangerous to humans, no deaths have occurred since the 1980s and the introduction of anti-venom. It is estimated that the latter has saved thousands of lives since the beginning of the project.

Despite the eight centimeters of this model, Atrax robustus Not the largest spider species emerging in Australia. Heading that another Mygale returns Selenocosmia crassipes Whose body can reach about twenty centimeters, including the legs.

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