July 29th, 2013 by James Ayre
Perhaps you’ve seen some of the images currently going around the internet that show a spider eating a snake that it’s caught in its web? If not, then take a look below…. and enjoy.
The images themselves are in fact all genuine, but the writing that’s been generally accompanying the images isn’t all that accurate…
The most commonly seen viral email reads like this:
Come to Australia, where our spiders eat our snakes!
Don’t Mess with a Redback Spider!!
An office receptionist got the shock of her life earlier this week when she found a 70cm long snake entangled in the web of a deadly spider. Tania Robertson, a receptionist at an electrical firm in Perth, came in to work on Tuesday and spotted the sight next to a desk in her office. The snake, which had obviously died from the spider’s poisonous bite, was off the ground and caught up in the web.
A compelling story, but the reality is a fair bit different… The spider in question isn’t a Redback — it’s a variety of brown button spider (which can be black), native to South Africa, where these images actually originate. And while the spider in question is relatively large — both the snake and spider are nowhere near the sizes that the email states.
Brown button spiders possess a rather dangerous venom, so it’s no surprise that the female in question was able to kill the small snake — brown button spiders are only slightly less venomous than black widows.
There’s a sad ending to this story though — because of the notoriety that the spider gained, it was ‘collected’ by officials from the South African National Museum and lived out the rest of its days in a jar… So there’s a lesson to be learned there — if you do anything that may seem to be surprising/exceptional to humans, you may end up living in a jar…
Here are some other photos from around the web of other spiders eating snakes:
And one of a spider eating a bird….
Image Credits: Screen Capture
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