1. Gorogh, Lounging Peacromancer says

    That is a very interesting perspective. Any guesses if the differently colored hairs at the base of and on the uhm… front appendages have a functional significance? Or is it due to different physical properties, sexual selection (I don’t assume it affects their prey, but then, what do I know)?

  2. davidnangle says

    Moggie, it makes me wonder if Harry Harrison wrote the Deathworld novels after a trip Down Under.

  3. says

    Intimidating aren’t they? I have seen another photo with venom dripping form the fangs. you don’t want to get them angry. I was going to bed one night and turned back the blankets only to see one disappear between the sheets. Stripped down the bed and couldn’t find it. Emptied a can of fly spray in the room and spent the night on the couch having nightmares about giant spiders.

  4. says

    This is why I live in the Northern Temperate Zone (actually, even that’s too broad a geographical limit for an arachnophobe — England has some fucking big spiders, even if they aren’t dangerously venomous). If global warming enables some of the big scarey ones to reach Ottawa, I’m moving north. Baffin Island should be safe enough….

  5. unclefrogy says

    I love spiders having played with them when I was a kid. They still scar/startle me when I come upon a black widow where I do not expect one and almost put my hand on her.
    If I can see them no big deal. They are truly amazing creatures and clearly very ancient. We are the late comers here and they are mostly interested in avoiding us big clumsy apes. Some though are not averse to taking a defensive bight at anyone that gets too close.
    uncle frogy

  6. Tethys says


    Any guesses if the differently colored hairs at the base of and on the uhm… front appendages have a functional significance?

    The photo is cropped so that only three pairs of legs are visible. The appendages with the different colored hairs are known as pedipalps. No idea what the hairs functions may be, they are related to tarantulas which have similar different colored hairs.

  7. Gorogh, Lounging Peacromancer says

    Tethys @10, thanks for your reply!

    I was aware of the fact that there are only three leg pairs visible, but as my post was otherwise pretty incoherent, I can see why you would assume I thought the pedipalps were legs, too. It was early for me, sorry…

    As to function or not, my uneducated guess would be some sexual display purpose. Don’t some of these critters do mating dances and such (or at least appeasement tapping, which might involve flashing your mouth hairs, too!)? Maybe if you eat higher quality food, your hair gets shinier or more orange or something… Wonder if males and females have different coloration.

  8. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    You should have saved this one for a “Fangsgiving” special.

    The camps been called off because of a very high number of eastern brown snakes on the property (after some scrub clearing nearby).

    Couldn’t they just import some American cops? ;/

    Err, spayed/neutered, of course. Imagine if THOSE became an exotic invasive species. O.O

  9. RobertL says

    A mate of mine found one of these dead in his swimming pool here in Brisbane. He contacted the Uni of Queensland because he didn’t think that we have Sydney funnel webs around here.

    They assured him that we do.