Australian Garden Orb Weaver

Spiders. Yes, I know. For many people spiders are about as welcome into their lives and homes as a jehovah witness selling books about dinosaurs. But the truth is, spiders play an integral role for all life on this small blue marble we call home.

And I recently had an interaction with one.

I was laying on the couch watching something that was eroding my already paper thin faith in humanity when I got bitten.

Twice!.

The thing is, I like spiders. I'm not at all sure what I did to deserve such enmity. No doubt it had its reasons ...

Nothing serious, a bit of an itch and some mild swelling at the bite sites, but still ...

All a touch inconvenient when I've spent a lot of time with people who're convinced that venomous Australians lay in wait behind the toaster or coiled in the bog roll (which is absurd),  ... they're confusing such animals with current affair hosts and politicians. 

... moving on.   

I like to imagine there's a spider bar out there called "BUZZED". Where Arachnids go to unwind and discuss such things as "Are silk stockings a waste of building material?" and "Moth" legitimate pro-noun?, or just flamboyant Butterflies with severe sleep disorders, causing Lepidoptera angst"?.

The reality is that spiders would much prefer to utilise their valuable venom making protein shakes out of their prey, (rather than wasting it on an indigestible bloke yelling at his television).  


Drawing precious silk from her spinnerets 



Note the sticky beads on each thread



A nightmare visage, generally reserved for insects


Garden Orb Weavers probably don't pose any medically significant risk to you. In fact, you may have never seen one in daylight. Their webs, after a night of, well,  netting;  are usually a few long discoloured tangled threads. Easily ignored in the rush of getting to work and/or finding the ingredients necessary to make a Bloody-Mary in order to start ya day.

The point is that the vast majority of spiders are actually on our side. 

They're aligned to our best interests - an almost impossible supposition in this day and 'rage'. But true all the same.

Whole volumes have been written on the importance of animals routinely vilified in the past. From the need for sharks in our oceans to ants at the proverbial picnic.

I like to think that there is a shared concern for the well being of nature as an interconnected network we are a part of, as apposed to nature being somehow independent of our actions/decisions and needs.

Such fabulous (I'm using 'fabulous' as I write this in the same way Kenny Everett, Joanna Lumley and Dylan Moran do/did), interlopers in our lives are becoming as rare as your name being spelt correctly at starbucks. 

Look, almost anything can be dangerous right?.

Take air for example, if there's too much of it between you and the ground and you fall ...

... well. 



Venomous Spiders Australia

The truth is there are (arguably), ten medically significant spiders in Australia. Most are well known such as the Red-back and Sydney funnel-web.

But let's remember that Australia has well over 10,000 species of spider so far recorded with many more being discovered at regular intervals and keep things in perspective.

Or not ... it's completely up to you.

As always, take care and cheers for stopping by :)
 




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