There are so many ways and chances for a human to die, more than the natural causes. Since humans are part of a vicious and ever increasing ecosystem, it is undeniably possible that humans can be preyed on different harmful predators.
In the animal and plant kingdoms, there are species that are known to bite their preys. While most of the well-known predators rely on the bite alone to kill their victims like sharks, wolves, and bears, others rely on a secondary attack after the bite that delivers the lethal blow. Most of animals that possesses the latter are the venomous and poisonous types. Examples of which are the snakes, insects, and of course spiders.
There are more than 43,000 known spider species around the world and most of them bite their victims and may cause pretty nasty bite symptoms to humans. However, only less than 30 of these known arachnids possess the venoms that could spell death to humans. Why is that? Most of the experts say it is because of the size difference. Most venomous spiders have lethal dose of their poison that are only designed to kill those slightly larger animals compared to their average sizes. Since humans may be significantly larger than an insect or lizard, their venoms usually just cause skin lesions, terrible muscle pains and headaches. However, humans must not be overconfident though as some species of spider are intelligent enough to know how much dosage and how many bites it would take to incapacitate their target prey.
As scary as it may sound, venomous spiders are some of the most amazingly looking animals in the world. This is the main reason why this article features them today. This awesome looking spiders have the looks to kill. For most of its victims, it is definitely a trap to their deaths. For us humans, for as long we keep our distance and be aware of its striking mechanisms, these cool animals are super interesting to learn and to know about.
Wolf Spider (Family Lycosidae)
The Wolf Spiders are generally characterized as tough and swift hunters with tremendous eyesight. They highly resembles the nursery web spiders, however, wolf spiders clutch their own egg sacs by affixing them to their spinnerets. The said spider’s body size excluding the legs can grow ranging from 10mm to 35mm. Wolf spiders generally inhabits both coastal and inland areas.
Even though branded as agile seekers, wolf spiders only inject venom if recurrently provoked. A victim may experience mild pain, swelling, itching, nausea, dizziness and may develop an elevated heart rate.
Six Eyed Sand Spider (Sicarius hahni)
The Six Eyed Sand Spider, also recognized as the Six Eyed Crab Spider, is a medium sized spider with body length ranging from 8mm to 15 mm and legs span extending up to 50mm. The name originated from the species’ capability of natural camouflaging if uncovered. This spider purposely conceals itself in the sand and strikes without warning at its prey. Six Eyed Sand Spider can be usually found in the deserts of South Africa.
The venom of a Six Eyed Sand Spider is identified as very potent with an extreme necrotoxic effect when injected to human skin. The venom will cause blood vessel outflow, thinning of blood and tissue damage.
On the other hand, there are no confirmed bites for the said species yet there are two suspected cases. One person was reportedly lost his arm due to massive necrosis, and the other victim died of immense hemorrhaging.
Brown Recluse Spider (Loxosceles reclusa)
The Brown Recluse Spider, also known as the Violin Spider, is one of the venomous spiders that you don’t want to cross path with. The six eyed Brown Recluse is generally light tan or yellow in color and it has an average body length of 7mm (0.25 inch) and a leg extent of 2.5cm (1 inch). The name “Violin” came from the cephalothorax (the front body part of Brown Recluse Spider) which highly resembles a dark tinted violin instrument. This species is endemic in the western and southern parts of the United States.
On the other hand, when disturbed, the Brown Recluse Spider effectively injects its necrotic venom to the skin. The said spider’s bite is widely known to cause skin ulcer. The enzymes that compose the venom causes local cell membranes destruction, which lead to collapse of fat, blood vessels and skin and eventually directs to tissue death.
Victims of Brown Recluse Spiders may experience rigorous pain at the bite site which lasts for four hours, severe itching, vomiting, nausea, fever and muscle pain.
Brazilian Wandering Spiders (Phoneutria fera and P. nigriventer)
The Phoneutria, widely recognized as Brazilian Wandering Spider or Banana Spider, is a genus of belligerent and toxic spiders. In fact, the Brazilian Wandering Spider was even listed as the most venomous spider in the Guinness World Records from 2010. The body length of a full grown Banana spider ranges from 17mm to 48mm (0.67inch to 1.89 inches) and the leg span can grow from 13cm up to 15cm (5.1inches to 5.9 inches). The genus can be easily distinguished from other related genera by the presence of thick pro-lateral scapulae. The said genus is mainly found in South America tropics and Central America.
Victims of the Brazilian Wandering Spider may exhibit symptoms such as extreme salivation, priapism for men and irregular heartbeat. The toxic that comes from the bite of this species mainly targets the nervous system.
Black Widow Spider (Latrodectus mactans)
One of the most famous venomous spiders out there is the Black Widow. They are famously known for its color which is obviously black and the hourglass shaped marking on their abdomen. Black widows are widespread all over the world and its bite also causes a wide varieties of symptoms such as muscle pain, nausea, and paralysis to the diaphragm. Although most adult victims can recover to the effects of its bite, little kids and elderly usually don’t stand a chance against it.
In the US alone, an average of 2,500 Black Widow attacks are being reported by poison control centers.
Brown Widow Spider (Latrodectus geometricus)
The Brown Widow Spider, also known as Brown Button, Brown black Widow, Geometric Button or House Button Spider, is a cousin to the infamous Black Widow (Latrodectus mactans). Compared to the Black Widow, the Brown Widow Spider is normally lighter in color which ranges from tan to dark brown. Likewise, it has a famous vivid orange-hued hourglass shaped spot on the underside of the abdomen. Unlike other deadly spiders that have specific habituated regions, Brown Widow Spider is famous to have a cosmopolitan distribution.
The venom of a Brown Widow Spider is regarded to be twice as powerful compared to that of the Black Widow. It attacks the nerve endings which may result to Lactrodectism with symptoms such as muscle rigidity, excessive sweating, pain and vomiting.Conversely; the species is less aggressive and only injects a diminutive amount of venom to victims. However, the Brown Widow Spider is correlated to the demise of two victims in Madagascar in year 1990’s.
Redback Spider (Latrodectus hasselti)
The Redback Spider, a member of multi-ethnic genus Latrodectus, is a species of extremely venomous spider native in Australia. A female Redback Spider can grow up to 10mm, while the male body length varies from 3mm to 4mm. The female can be easily identified by her spherical shaped black body with an outstanding red stripe on the upper abdomen and a red hourglass shape on the underside.
The redback spider is reportedly accountable for most victims stricken with venoms that needs anti-venom treatments than any other harmful creature in Australia. The number of victims each year ranges from 2,000 to 10,000. The venom of the said species is a blend of neurotoxins known as alpha-latrotoxins. Victims of Redback Spiders will highly experience extreme pain, sweating, swollen lymph nodes and fast heartbeats.
Sydney Funnel Web Spider (Atrax robustus)
The Sydney funnel-web spider (Atrax robustus) is one hell of a biter. Once an unsuspecting human get caught on its funnel-shaped web, this vicious attacker immediately launch into the victim and deliver a barrage of stinging bites. Although its venom release is not of a lethal dose and quantity, the number of bites evens out the score. It is how this spider compensates its lethality, making sure that the victim gets enough venom to be incapacitate.
The worse thing about this funnel we spider, side from the brutal bite attacks, is its impressive needle-like fangs which is longer to some known vipers. With its solid built and extraordinary fangs, funnel web spiders are known to bite victims from their rubber shoes and even on finger/toe nails.
Interestingly enough, unlike most of its relatives, the male funnel web spiders hold more potent venom compared to its female counterpart. The male’s venom contains powerful neurotoxin which is very effective in incapacitating primates. Minutes of exposure to this venom can manifest extreme symptoms such as muscle spasms, palpitations, vomiting, confusion and swelling of the brain. There were even reported cases of death amongst its victims just 15 minutes after the barrage of bites.