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AWOL for 27 years, discovered living on MOD property.

(apols for the clickbait headline)

Harmless to humans (and Paras) apparently, but still not one to find in your doss-bag

One of Britain’s largest spiders has been discovered on a Ministry of Defence training ground in Surrey having not been seen in the country for 27 years.

The great fox-spider is a night-time hunter, known for its speed and agility, as well as its eight black eyes which give it wraparound vision. The critically endangered spider was assumed extinct in Britain after last being spotted in 1993 on Hankley Common in Surrey. The two-inch-wide (5cm) arachnid had previously also been spotted at two sites in Morden Heath in Dorset. These are the only three areas in Britain, all in the comparatively warmer south, where it has been recorded.
2025.jpg


The great fox-spider is one of the largest members of the wolf-spider family, hunting spiders that do not use webs to catch prey. It chases down beetles, ants and smaller spiders before pouncing on them and injecting deadly venom. The prey is immobilised and its internal organs liquefy. The spider – which poses no risk to humans – feeds using fang-bearing jaws.

M0D sites are often kept open because military exercises cause minor disturbance to the vegetation, which stops succession of shrubs and trees.

 

ste14w

War Hero
I don't care if they are harmless to humans, if I was within a hundred yards of that evil looking bas***d I would be off in the opposite direction at the speed of a startled gazelle.
 

964ST

Old-Salt
Was it living in one of the Old Fashioned building complexes that the Military used in the past?
like the wooden barracks in Arborfield?
 
Last edited:
(apols for the clickbait headline)

Harmless to humans (and Paras) apparently, but still not one to find in your doss-bag

One of Britain’s largest spiders has been discovered on a Ministry of Defence training ground in Surrey having not been seen in the country for 27 years.

The great fox-spider is a night-time hunter, known for its speed and agility, as well as its eight black eyes which give it wraparound vision. The critically endangered spider was assumed extinct in Britain after last being spotted in 1993 on Hankley Common in Surrey. The two-inch-wide (5cm) arachnid had previously also been spotted at two sites in Morden Heath in Dorset. These are the only three areas in Britain, all in the comparatively warmer south, where it has been recorded.
View attachment 516673

The great fox-spider is one of the largest members of the wolf-spider family, hunting spiders that do not use webs to catch prey. It chases down beetles, ants and smaller spiders before pouncing on them and injecting deadly venom. The prey is immobilised and its internal organs liquefy. The spider – which poses no risk to humans – feeds using fang-bearing jaws.

M0D sites are often kept open because military exercises cause minor disturbance to the vegetation, which stops succession of shrubs and trees.

 
One of my standing orders is opening the fraus bagged bananas after some great big immigrant spider jumped out on her.
 

ste14w

War Hero
One of my standing orders is opening the fraus bagged bananas after some great big immigrant spider jumped out on her.
I hope that you're fully NBC'd up when you do that?
 
(apols for the clickbait headline)

Harmless to humans (and Paras) apparently, but still not one to find in your doss-bag

One of Britain’s largest spiders has been discovered on a Ministry of Defence training ground in Surrey having not been seen in the country for 27 years.

The great fox-spider is a night-time hunter, known for its speed and agility, as well as its eight black eyes which give it wraparound vision. The critically endangered spider was assumed extinct in Britain after last being spotted in 1993 on Hankley Common in Surrey. The two-inch-wide (5cm) arachnid had previously also been spotted at two sites in Morden Heath in Dorset. These are the only three areas in Britain, all in the comparatively warmer south, where it has been recorded.
View attachment 516673

The great fox-spider is one of the largest members of the wolf-spider family, hunting spiders that do not use webs to catch prey. It chases down beetles, ants and smaller spiders before pouncing on them and injecting deadly venom. The prey is immobilised and its internal organs liquefy. The spider – which poses no risk to humans – feeds using fang-bearing jaws.

M0D sites are often kept open because military exercises cause minor disturbance to the vegetation, which stops succession of shrubs and trees.


I like spiders - it's a lovely looking animal...
 
Every Aussie on the planet "Call that a spider...."

Actually it looks like a wolf spider, similar to one that I caught watching me dig the garden a year or so back. I've got pictures somewhere but not to hand at the moment.

Which reminds me of a spider story, the company I work for has works in Aus and in the UK, specifically around Preston (Now thats given it away...). A big bit of kit from an aircraft was boxed up and sent from Aus to the Preston works, and when they opened it up they found a stowaway. Or more precisely, several hundred stowaways as mummy red back spider had been on board and given birth to a significant number of kiddies.

These kiddies were last seen exiting the open box, and heading for the banks of the River Ribble which caused some consternation amongst the eco types...
 

ste14w

War Hero
Every Aussie on the planet "Call that a spider...."

Actually it looks like a wolf spider, similar to one that I caught watching me dig the garden a year or so back. I've got pictures somewhere but not to hand at the moment.

Which reminds me of a spider story, the company I work for has works in Aus and in the UK, specifically around Preston (Now thats given it away...). A big bit of kit from an aircraft was boxed up and sent from Aus to the Preston works, and when they opened it up they found a stowaway. Or more precisely, several hundred stowaways as mummy red back spider had been on board and given birth to a significant number of kiddies.

These kiddies were last seen exiting the open box, and heading for the banks of the River Ribble which caused some consternation amongst the eco types...
That's me giving Preston a wide berth then.
Just in case I ever had a reason to go there anyway.
 
Walking the dog on a French campsite at night, turned on my head torch and saw the reflection of hundreds of tiny blue eyes lurking in the grass. They weren’t as big as this sucker though...
206C56BE-0689-418C-916E-459D7FABEFF4.jpeg

Edit: I bet you all look at at your hand, didn’t you?
 

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