The anonymous donation of a massive funnel-web spider to an antivenom program in Australia will likely be instrumental in saving someone’s life at some point in the future.
According to a report by USA Today, the gigantic funnel-web spider, with massive piercing fangs, is “one of a kind.”
“She is unusually large and if we can get the public to hand in more spiders like her, it will only result in more lives being saved due to the huge amount of venom they can produce,” Michael Tate, the education officer for the Australian Reptile Park, said in a statement. “We are really keen to find out where she came from in hopes to find more MASSIVE spiders like her.”
CNN reported the arachnid, which has been nicknamed “Megaspider,” measures “8 centimeters (about 3 inches) foot to foot, with fangs 2 centimeters (about 0.8 inches) long,” the Australian Reptile Park said in a statement Friday. “With a body measuring 5 centimeters (1.9 inches), it’s the largest funnel-web spider the park has ever seen,” it added.
The Independent reported that the Australian Reptile Park in Somersby, New South Wales, said the size of the female funnel-web spider was “comparable to a tarantula – and significantly bigger than the usual 5cm or less.” It noted that the keepers were “thrilled to receive it” because bigger spiders produce larger amounts of venom that can be processed for use in treatments.
Keepers at the park, eager to discover what area the spider came from in hopes of finding more of that size, are making an appeal for the mystery donor to come forward, the Independent stated.
The Australian Reptile Park said in a statement that recent weather conditions — rainy and “intensely humid” — were ideal conditions for funnel-web spiders to thrive, the Independent cited.
A tweet posted by Fox 46 shares a photo of the spider.