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Tuesday, November 29, 2022
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Australian zoo acquires the largest funnel web spider

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A zoo in Australia has acquired what officials there say is the largest funnel web spider they’ve ever seen.

Measuring in at 8 centimeters, the so-called “megaspider” possesses a potentially deadly bite with fangs strong enough to pierce a human fingernail.

The spider was handed in anonymously to the Australian Reptile Park, about an hour’s drive north of Sydney, as part of the zoo’s antivenom program.

“In my 30+ years at the Park, I have never seen a funnel web spider this big!” said Michael Tate, education officer at the Australian Reptile Park, in a statement.

The zoo encourages members of the public to turn in funnel spiders they find in the wild so the zoo can milk their venom and create antivenom, which it says is the only program of its kind in the country.

Now the Australian Reptile Park is hoping to find the anonymous donor of the megaspider, because it may lead them to an area with more unusually large arachnids that produce larger amounts of venom for the antivenom program.

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