Deadly funnel-web found in Parkes

BE MINDFUL: Atrax robustus, the Sydney Funnel-web Spider is responsible for deaths and many medically serious bites. While uncommon, they have been spotted in Parkes.
BE MINDFUL: Atrax robustus, the Sydney Funnel-web Spider is responsible for deaths and many medically serious bites. While uncommon, they have been spotted in Parkes.

A DEADLY funnel-web spider has been spotted in Parkes, with a resident reminding people to be vigilant.

Pat Oliver brought in the specimen to the Parkes Champion Post offices for inspection, and for a Blue Mountains bush kid, it was fascinating to see the critter out here in such a dry environment.

Pat explained it was found in Miller Street in Parkes (which is very close to Bushmans Dam).

"My grandson was moving the lawn and spotted it; I assumed like most would here in Parkes that it would be a trapdoor, but on closer inspection it was clearly a funnel-web so he squashed it with his big gardening boots," said Pat.

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Funnel-webs are more commonly associated with wet parts of Sydney (usually the North Shore), Central Coast and Blue Mountains but have appeared in Orange and Parkes in the past - though they are not altogether common.

The Australian Museum says there are at least 40 species of funnel-web species, varying from 1cm to 5cm in body length.

Males are smaller and more lightly built than females, but are the more venomous of the two. The museum says no deaths have occurred since the development of an antivenom in 1981.

For more information about identifying a funnel-web spider, head to https://australian.museum/learn/animals/spiders/funnel-web-spiders-group/.

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