Feeds

Spider attack chef saved by mobile phone snap

Hi, doc - I just got bitten by this...

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

A Somerset chef who was bitten twice by a highly-venemous Brazilian spider was saved thanks to a snap he took of the beast on his mobile phone, the Times reports.

Matthew Stevens, 23, disturbed the Brazilian Wandering Spider (Phoneutria fera) which had stowed away in a crate of bananas and found its way to the Quantock Gateway pub in Bridgwater. The highly-aggressive arachnid - rated among the world's most poisonous - then apparently legged it and took cover under a dishcloth. Stevens takes up the story: "It was hiding in a cloth and when I squeezed the cloth it bit me. It was about as big as the palm of my hand. I went to try and pick it up and it bit me again. It landed in the freezer, which stunned it."

Unaware that he had just been savaged by a monster which carries enough venom to dispatch 225 mice to the hereafter, Stevens then grabbed a quick pic on his mobe as a keepsake of the encounter. However, he was soon on his way to the local community hospital after his hand swelled "to the size of a balloon" and he began to suffer dizziness.

Hospital staff had a shufti and sent Stevens on his way with a quick "go home and keep an eye on it". Soon after arriving, he collapsed, prompting his partner, Cara McSweeney, to call an ambulance which whisked the rapidly deteriorating chef to Musgrove Park Hospital, Taunton.

Doctors put Stevens on a saline drip, but his condition continued to worsen. He recalled: "I thought I wasn’t going to make it. My chest was so tight I could hardly breathe. My blood pressure was going through the roof and my heart was beating so hard I could feel it hitting my chest. The doctors didn’t know what type of spider it was, but I’d got a picture of it on my phone and they sent it to Bristol Zoo to identify it."

Stevens was discharged the next day after docs flushed the toxins out of his system with increased saline. Defra inspectors later found the spider in a state of "suspended animation" in the fridge.

The Times notes that the Wandering Spider killed 14 people in Brazil between 1926 and 1996, although no-one has died since thanks to the successful development of an antidote. ®

Bootnote

The Guinness Book of Records lists the Brazilian Wandering Spider as the planet's most poisonous (venomous), although a quick trawl of the, ahem, web reveals that many pundits mark the highly unpleasant Sydney Funnel Web Spider for that particular accolade - possibly as a result of its extremely obstreperous attitude and fangs which are capable of biting through your fingernail. Nasty.

Related stories

Spiders inspire eight-legged Post-it notes
Charlotte Church topless pic busts onto mobes
Cop 'downloaded nude snaps' from suspect's mobile phone

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Are you a fat boy? Get to university NOW, you PENNILESS SLACKER
Rotund types paid nearly 20% less than people who didn't eat all the pies
Emma Watson should SHUT UP, all this abuse is HER OWN FAULT
... said an anon coward who we really wish hadn't posted on our website
Japan develops robot CHEERLEADERS which RIDE on BALLS
'Will put smiles on faces worldwide', predicts corporate PR chief
Bruges Booze tubes to pump LOVELY BEER underneath city
Belgian booze pumped from underground
Oz carrier Tiger Air takes terror alerts to new heights
Don't doodle, it might cost you your flight
Amazon: Wish in one hand, Twit in the other – see which one fills first
#AmazonWishList A year's supply of Arran scotch, ta
Let it go, Steve: Ballmer bans iPads from his LA Clippers b-ball team
Can you imagine the scene? 'Hey guys, it's your new owner – WTF is that on your desk?'
Oi, London thief. We KNOW what you're doing - our PRECRIME system warned us
Aye, shipmate, it be just like that Minority Report
prev story

Whitepapers

A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.