Funnel-web spidersThere are many species of spiders on the island, including the common garden St Andrews Cross spider and the nocturnal Huntsman, which is sometimes found indoors. Spiders are an integral part of the eco-system and the great majority are harmless. It is important to be aware, however, of the Sydney Funnel Web, which is present on the island.

Funnel web spiders

Funnel-web spiders have highly toxic and fast acting venom. They burrow in moist, cool, sheltered places – under rocks, in and under rotting logs, crevices, rot and borer holes in rough-barked trees. In gardens, they and are rarely found in more open situations like lawns. Gardeners and people digging in soil may encounter Funnel-webs in burrows at any time of the year.

Prevention

  • Wear shoes, long trousers and thick gloves when gardening.
  • Avoid walking outside with bare feet, especially at night

Symptoms

Pain, mouth numbness, vomiting, abdominal pain, sweating and salivation

Treatment

  • Apply an ice pack to the bitten area to relieve pain.
  • Do not apply a pressure bandage as the venom moves slowly and pressure worsens pain.
  • Seek medical attention.