Australia? Not Today, Mate!

There was a time when I thought that Australia would be a perfect vacation spot. Not anymore. Hordes of wolf spiders seeking to avoid rising flood waters in eastern Australia have left their underground habitats and come on land, casting webs over large portions of farmlands. In such widespread wet weather, the country’s spider population has boomed, and people are fleeing the affected areas.

The spiders are expected to return to their natural underground habitats after the flood waters recede, but during their temporary stay above ground, they have eaten mosquitoes and other insects whose populations have also boomed amid the moisture. Some would consider that to be a good thing. Not me. Spiders are never a good thing in my eyes. I don’t of anything else with a higher creep factor.

The post-flood ballooning phenomenon also occurred in Pakistan last April. The picture below shows thousands of spiders and other insects clustered high in a tree to avoid the waters. It’s the stuff of my nightmares.

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This entry was posted in Eeewww, Quirky news items, Robin Helm on by .

About Robin Helm

Robin Helm has published all three volumes of The Guardian Trilogy: Guardian, SoulFire, and Legacy. She also recently published the Yours by Design Series: Accidentally Yours, Sincerely Yours, and Forever Yours. She and her husband have two adult daughters, two sons-in-law, two granddaughters, and a Yorkie Poo named Toby.

21 thoughts on “Australia? Not Today, Mate!

  1. Laura Hile

    I don’t mind spiders. Really. If I find one inside, I find a cup and a piece of paper, trap him, and set him free outside. (I really do hate mosquitoes that much!)

    You will notice, however, that the pronouon I use is singular. Them, especially in reference to spiders, is an entirely different deal.

    Those web-shrouded trees make me shiver. Absolutely the stuff of nightmares, Robin.

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    1. Robin Helm

      My husband catches them and puts them outside, too, Laura, but I think thousands of them may be too much, even for him.

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  2. LucyParker

    Yikes! My boy, Elroy, used to have a wolf spider, so I was okay with the spiders until you posted that picture. That is beyond creepy.

    One time Elroy’s gecko got lost in the house and I wouldn’t get undressed because I could feel cold-blooded gecko eyes following me.

    I think I like animals that have evolved into friendlier beings, rather than those prehistoric dinosaur types. This blog makes me twitchy just thinking about it.

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    1. Laura Hile

      My sons caught a couple of garter snakes and brought them home. The peril of homeschooling elementary-age boys is guilt entrapment. Everything becomes a science project! So I caved. Out I went to purchase a snake cage, heated rock, feeding dish, etc. Before we learned that we should be feeding those snakes goldfish, I bought crickets.

      You guessed it, a few got out. The boys’ room was musical with chirping for a while. And every so often one of the snakes would escape …

      Makes a good story now, but then? Twitchy is right, Lucy.

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    2. Robin Helm

      I had to laugh about the gecko. Ha!

      About that picture, what in the world is the guy doing under the tree with a bucket? Catching spiders? Ack!

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  3. Monica P

    Blech! That is nasty. Spiders are so creepy. A girl at work today insisted on telling me about this today during my lunch break, while I was eating. One spider is at least small enough to squish but all those? Shudder!!!

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  4. Robin Helm

    You could be squishing for hours, knee-deep in spider remains. Creepy, creepy, creepy! Sounds like something that could happen in the end times.

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  5. Gayle Mills

    Reminds me of Arachnophobia, a film shot in 1990.
    8 Legs
    2 Fangs
    And an attitude.

    I didn’t sleep for a week.
    [media]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4aQ6vg3JB2U[/media]
    Incidentally, at 00:56, you can see a comforter just like I used on my bed for WAY too many years. I had drapes to match and wallpaper to coordinate. (Notice I didn’t say “complement.” )

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    1. Robin Helm

      Your decorating sense has always been wonderful. I, on the other hand, bought the ugliest, most uncomfortable couches in the world.

      I never saw Arachnophobia. The entire concept gave me nightmares.

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  6. stephanie

    Definitely the stuff of nightmares…have seen other pictures and just cannot imagine THAT many spiders….oh my….I would run screaming into the ocean….

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    1. Robin Helm

      Stephanie, I would run screaming somewhere. Jaws made me afraid of the ocean, so I don’t know where I would go, but I would NOT be standing anywhere near those trees!

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  7. Susan Kaye

    My husband HATES spiders. Now that we have a granddaughter, she delights in looking at bugs–go figure–and Bill will man up and stand with her. He won’t touch them of course but observation is okay. I think he probably goes into the garage after and shudders privately.

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    1. Laura Hile

      My sons hate spiders — all of them. Was it my fault because I don’t? And tried to make them spider-tolerant?

      For my second son’s benefit, I made up another verse to Itsy Bitsy Spider. Something exciting to sing in the rocking chair. You know, like a boy would enjoy. Sing it in your best monster voice, with plenty of dramatic pauses:

      The great big humongous spider
      Went crawling up the wall.
      The spider was so heavy
      That the wall began to fall.
      Then little bitty Nathan
      Ran screaming from the room.
      And Mom got out her UZI
      And shot the spider, BOOM!

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      1. Susan Kaye

        I’ll pass that one on to Bill, he’ll like the Uzi part.

        I showed his the picture in the story and once her realized what covered the tree, he visibly drew back from the screen. Fear is an amazing thing.

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  8. Robin Helm

    If my husband is home when I see a spider, I call him so that he can catch it and put it outside. He doesn’t like to kill them because they eat harmful insects. If he’s not home, the spider dies. I feel NO guilt.

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  9. Susan Kaye

    I have no hard and fast spider disposal opinions. It all depends on how I’m feeling. Some days it’s thumbs up and the spider lives, other days … well … lucky they reproduce at a good clip.

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  10. Robin Helm

    They will never live in my house. Either my husband will put them out, or I will spray them into the great beyond. I hate them – sneaky, creepy-crawlies!

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  11. Susan Kaye

    They have so much in common with politicians …

    Just think if pols had eight arms! All the better to steal candy from babies with! And divest us of the few sous they leave us after taxes.

    Sorry, election years bring it out of me.

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Why yes, we DO want a piece of your mind. ;-)

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