The Huntsman Spider: Is His Bite Dangerous to Humans?

Once a year, around this time each year, we have our house sprayed for pest control. It costs around $250 and I wrote about the last time we had it done in my post called Good News for Those Scared of Australian Spiders and Creepy Crawlies.

Time, I think, that we have it redone.

But before I move on to today’s post though, I want to reiterate that I do see far fewer spiders in my home here in Australia than I ever did back in England. Maybe that is down to the treatment, either way, spiders here are really not that big an issue. That said…..

An Encounter with a Six Legged Spider.

It all started when I went into the laundry room, not to do laundry, of course, but it’s where the beer fridge is. Just as I was about to open the fridge door, I saw something large and ugly out of the corner of my eye.

huntsman spiderYes, it’s a Huntsman spider.

Now, in my early days after arriving here in Australia I think I would have cruelly and painfully ended this arachnid’s life by spraying him with Raid, the insect equivalent of sulphuric acid. But today, as I always used to do in England, I went to grab my glass and piece of card to capture him humanely. The only difference between here and England is my glass is bigger.

He wasn’t easy to catch, as I stood on the stall and stretched towards him, he dropped to the floor. He landed just to the left of my beer fridge and if he’d had any sense, he would have crawled right under it. But no! As I have found with most spiders, if you stare at them they stand still.

So I stared at him, and he stared at me. We stared at each other. With his eyes fixed on mine and with the speed of a Wild West gunslinger (sort of) I swiftly placed the glass over his head.

Gotcha! huntsman spder in a glassI then took him into the garage and dropped him into the no longer used salad drawer, ironically from the beer fridge under which he could have escaped me, so I could get a better picture of him. I’d heard the Huntsman has rather large fangs and wanted to take a look. Huntsman spider fangsI’m no arachnologist, but I’m thinking those big things I’ve circled in red are his fangs. My, they are big aren’t they? Update: as several commenters have mentioned below, these are not the spider’s fangs, they are its palps. That’s comforting, isn’t it? And I can only count six legs, has this guy been in a fight? With the photo shoot over, I released my Huntsman back into the wild. Well, my front garden. Huntsman spider releasedSo he is now freely roaming Australia again, but it isn’t just Australia that gets the Huntsman spider. Virtually every country south of the equator, and a few more besides, also has the Huntsman.

Is the Huntsman spider dangerous?

Yes, if you are an insect or maybe even a small lizard or gecko. They sometimes even eat cockroaches; in my book that makes him a good guy! But harmful to humans? No. A bite from a Huntsman spider on a human may cause some local swelling and a little bit of pain, but it would be gone within a day or two. But the Huntsman is very timid and way too scared of humans.

Expect him to run away, and fast!

Update: In the comments below, Drew . a on November 26, 2017 pointed out that he had been bitten by a Huntsman and that his experience was much worse than I have suggested it would be here. From everything I’ve read, a painful reaction and certainly one that has effects lasting longer than a couple of days is very rare.

In particular, my ‘Wildlife of Greater Brisbane’ book, which is produced by the Queensland Museum describes the bite of a Brown Huntsman Spider as ‘Mild local pain; sometimes redness, itchiness and minor swelling.’

You can read more about the bite of the Huntsman in my response to Drew . a where you will find a link to a medical study PDF. There are some references on some websites claiming that the bite from a particular species of Huntsman can be dangerous to humans, but this same medical report appears to refute those suggestions.

In view of the experience of the commentor though, it is probably best to exercise caution with the Huntsman, and although I have seen many people pick this spider up to remove it from their homes, it is not something I would suggest is a good idea to do. Some people will continue to do that though, as you’ll see in the video at the foot of this article.

I still recommend removing the spider safely though, rather than killing it, as these spiders are good guys.

On with the rest of the article…

So in reality, they look far more frightening than they are. And that, in many ways, is the problem. Beware! These spiders can grow larger than the size of adult human hand, with hairy legs too, so yes, they look scary. And they like hiding in little small spaces.

Imagine driving a car when one falls down on your lap. Nobody can really know for sure how many car drivers have driven into walls, other cars, trees or buildings because of one of these otherwise harmless spiders. So under those kinds of circumstances, yes, the Huntsman can kill (indirectly) a human.

I know it’s not easy, but the trick is not to panic. Like this guy……

Although I think that was a little bit staged, don’t you?

So how do you cope if you’re driving a car and a Huntsman unexpectedly drops in?

Unfortunately, the video I did have here which demonstrated both the right way and the wrong way to deal with a spider in your car has now been taken down by YouTube.

So I’ve replaced it with another video, clearly not shot in Australia, which shows how you should definitely not react to a spider showing up whilst driving in your car…

Harry the Huntsman

Finally, those of you who have read all the comments will know that Rick Boutcher allows Huntsman Spiders to live in his house to take care of pest control. Of course, those of you who haven’t read all the comments won’t know that.

Well, here’s your chance to:

How to safely remove a Huntsman spider from your house

No need to use your boot or a bug spray, just follow these simple instructions…

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{ 205 comments… add one }
  • Richard April 8, 2024, 4:58 am |

    Fortunately, the bite of a huntsman spider is generally not considered seriously harmful to people. Although, the fangs can pierce human skin and be quite painful.

    – Flick Pest Control

  • poop August 9, 2020, 5:32 am |

    I caught a spider today it was really cool

  • TrickedidDogeBoi August 23, 2019, 9:41 am |

    hey, I once had a huntsman living in my laundry and at first, I was petrified but then I was fine. it is now dead but the memories stay with me.

    • BobinOz August 26, 2019, 4:38 pm |

      Good for you. I’d probably do the same but I have to remove Huntsman from my house as soon as I see them, because if I don’t get to them, the pest control treatment would and they wouldn’t last long.

      So I have to capture them and give them their freedom.

  • Leanne April 25, 2018, 1:14 am |

    I was bitten by a Huntsman last night. Had crawled inside my bath towel which I wrapped around me after stepping from the shower. Felt a strange sensation and a sting in my belly, threw the towel across the bathroom and watched this huge thing crawl out. Danced around the bathroom, naked as the day I was born, screaming like a banshee. Had a large red itchy area on my abdomen, felt feverish and nauseous but all good the next morning. However still psychologically traumatised by the whole incident ?

    • BobinOz April 26, 2018, 8:30 pm |

      I’m more impressed that you have heard a banshee scream!

      Anyway, no physical harm appears to have been done and I hope you get over your psychological trauma soon 🙂

  • Radguy March 29, 2018, 4:40 am |

    I’ve never been bitten by a huntsman, nor has anyone I know. It is really common to encounter these guys and I’ve had them in or on the car quite a few times – they seem to like the areas around the windscreen, particularly the vents on the outside. Regardless, it’s always startling to see them run across your windscreen as you start to move.

    My experience with their fangs was interesting. I found a mean 6 legged one on holidays and for fun, I gave it some cooked egg white. It sunk its fangs in, I reckon it they were over 1cm long. What was interesting was seeing the sheaths around the fangs compress upwards as it bit the egg. I guess most spiders have this feature so you can take the length of the fangs to be the length of the sheaths.

    Also, like all animals, they’re easily distracted. If you want to remove them with a glass or other dish, do it with one hand while using the other to distract them with movement. This works with mozzies too.

    Anyway, people here don’t worry too much about huntsmans, it’s the whitetails that freak everyone out. Those little buggers run around like they own the joint, even to the point of appearing to stalk you. Actually, it’s more like a steady, creepy marvellously syncopated robotic gait. That’s not to say they can’t move quickly when they want to, as they go around eating all the daddy long legs.

    • BobinOz March 29, 2018, 7:22 pm |

      Yes, a while back I had a rather large huntsman run across my car screen, fortunately on the outside as I was just driving off. He took cover in the engine compartment, disappearing from view, and I was wondering if he might find an air vent and make it into the car and maybe come and sit on my lap.

      But no, when I got to my destination, only 15 minutes away, he reemerged from the engine, run across the windscreen again and got down by the side of the car.

      Scrounging a lift, I reckoned.

      Funnily enough, I haven’t seen too many whitetails in my house, and I’m not disappointed by that.

    • Rat April 17, 2024, 5:46 am |

      I have a huntsman spider infestation. My mother was bit by one, and said it hurts for about 2 weeks. Although they aren’t deadly by any means, do be careful around them!

      • BobinOz April 25, 2024, 6:21 pm |

        It’s rare, but yes, the huntsman spider can sometimes bite and it is painful. I think they are lovely spiders, but an infestation, that’s too much 🙂

        I do hope you get that sorted out.

  • kylie March 18, 2018, 8:44 pm |

    I was bitten about 3 weeks ago while I was asleep. While I can’t say if it was a huntsman or not, I am thinking that it was one as numerous seen in the bus I sleep in over the past couple of months and spotted another this morning… I kind of woke to the bite, recalling that I slapped/swiped the bite site at the time of the bite…then burning sensation at site for a few hours keeping me half awake…When I got up in the AM, there was no pain, irritation or redness at the site, only a puncture mark where bitten…1 week later it came up like a mosquito bite and as itchy as 1 for about 12-24 hrs…then turned into the size of a 20c piece boil like thing…now about the size of a 5c piece!!!

    • kylie March 18, 2018, 8:50 pm |

      I spoke to my brother about it last week as I have been having joint issues almost like arthritic pain in my wrists…not too sure if it’s old age or a symptom of the bite (that’s how my Google search landed me here!!)…anyway my brother suggested he has a friend who was also bitten by a spider on the leg…not too sure what kind of spider, but I’m not aware of any deadly ones in the NT area…anyway he popped into the hospital for this bite and ended up with staph and I believe has had his leg amputated within the last week…

      • BobinOz March 19, 2018, 8:43 pm |

        There has been quite a bit of talk about staph infections on this website, and it has been suggested that a spider bite cannot cause a staph infection, but when people get these kinds of infections they look like a spider bite, so spiders get the blame.

        Interesting that you never saw your spider, so it’s possible you were not bitten at all. Have a read of this article…

        It does sound as though your wound is getting better, but if you do have any concerns, I’d be inclined to go and see a doctor if I were you. Hope it clears up in full though and soon. Cheers, Bob

        • kylie March 19, 2018, 11:47 pm |

          I’m 99.9% sure I was bitten by a Huntsman…the pain part was real, as was the burning sensation later as both were fairly painful…plus the number of Huntsman’s I’ve seen in there over the short time has me convinced I was bitten and not staph… I am not concerned about my wound at all…Was just weird how it came up like it did a week later…
          Sorry, I’m not very good at writing and often not very clear, I wasn’t referring to the spider giving him staph but maybe the hospital…I’ve been hearing a few story’s about people going into hospitals relatively healthy and coming out with staph.

          • BobinOz March 21, 2018, 7:21 pm |

            No need to apologise Kylie, I re-read what you said, it was quite clear. Maybe I should improve my reading ability 🙂

            Anyway, it does sound like your spider bite is getting better and I have heard this before, especially over on my page about redback spider bites, that they can flare up again a week or more after the event. Hopefully your bite won’t give you too much more trouble from now on in.

            • kylie November 30, 2018, 12:35 pm |

              Ok update on suspected spider bite…
              With my aching joints since above mentioned insect bite I joined numerous Facebook groups, including an Rheumatoid Arthritis group where I posted about 6 weeks ago re bite and the numerous symptoms following this bite that I am experiencing. 1 reply alerted me to Lyme Disease or tick borne diseases. Not long after my bite I did look into Lyme, but ticked it off my list as suggested not in Australia…So since this comment from RA group I looked into Lyme some more and found it may be here and seems logic to me there is no reason why it couldn’t be here. Since researching more about Lyme disease I am finding it is not just ticks but most bitting insects can spread this disease. Many symptoms can occur including brain/nerve related and physical pain/issues, which I am experiencing most…
              Only just learning about Lyme, it’s not so easy to be tested here in Australia as our system doesn’t recognise it as an issue from what I understand.
              I have had tests done for other symptom related illnesses as a process of elimination before I looked into Lyme disease more…(cost to govy (us) for process of elimination testing would be more than testing for lyme I would imagine)…Iron count was 1st and found to be low (since found it’s a symptom of Lyme, I had IUD implant at the time so no monthly bleeds or other reasons for low iron)…I am now on iron supplements and seems ok for now…coming into the age of menopause so this was a big consideration as some symptoms are the same…bloods show I am not Peri-menopausal…tested for Ross River Virus came back negative, arthritic blood test (not sure what exactly) but all good apparently…
              I have recently become so bad with chronic fatigue, brain fog etc I am now seeing a psychologist as is affecting my work and daily function, not that she can assist too much if it is a tick borne disease but she may be able to assist in other ways, including that I think I opened her mind up to the tick borne issues here in Oz. She mentioned some of her patients suffer from chronic fatigue, brain fog, depression etc for no diagnosable reason. She wasn’t’ aware of tick borne diseases at all so will be interesting when I have my 2nd appointment with her in 6 days.
              While I was 99.9% confident in my earlier post a huntsman was the culprit, I now believe it to be a tick bite, for a few reasons including I didn’t find any spider in my sleeping area dead or alive since…

              • BobinOz November 30, 2018, 8:09 pm |

                Gosh, this is just horrible Kylie, I really do feel for you. Lyme disease, as you say, isn’t supposed to be here in Australia, but there are people who say they have it. People who have never been abroad.

                The problem is, again, as you say, that this country isn’t set up to deal with it very well which is just a horrible situation for you to be in. What are you supposed to do, go abroad for treatment?

                If it was a tick bite, don’t they kind of slowly bury themselves into your skin? Would there not have been evidence of that at the bite site? As you say though, it doesn’t sound like a huntsman anymore, something else is going on here.

                I do hope they find a way to help you, and good luck with your second appointment coming up soon. I hope they find a way to treat this as it can’t be much fun living the way you are at the moment.

                • kylie December 1, 2018, 11:43 am |

                  I have read of numerous Aussies who have contracted Lyme and don’t own a passport to travel abroad, but our system is still not considering it an issue here. Last time I went O/S was about 8 years ago to Bali…
                  I believe the tick that bit me maybe didn’t get a chance to bury it’s way into me as he must have forgotten to dose the bite area up with pain killers as some use an anesthetic prior to biting. The pain of the bite was fairly intense and I gave it a fairly solid whack, so maybe it didn’t want to hand around…

                  • BobinOz December 3, 2018, 4:43 pm |

                    Whatever it is that caused this, I do hope you get some help with it soon. I’m sure you’ve seen this page, it has some useful information about Lyme disease…


                    • kylie December 3, 2018, 9:26 pm |

                      Thanks again Bob, seen many web pages lyme related over the past 6 weeks, but not too sure if I have seen this one before, but thanks a bunch for going the extra mile…Might just be that 1 link that helps!!

                  • Paul August 24, 2019, 4:09 am |

                    Hi Kylie,
                    Lyme is a nasty disease and as you probably now know can present itself in a wide variety of symptoms. If you do see treatment the I suggest you consider Klinik St Georg in Bad Aibling, Germany. I had treatment there for a different condition but met an Aussie there for Lyme treatment. Treatment last 2-3 weeks. Obviously do your own research to see what you think. If you do go, it would be good to take someone else with you for support. The rooms in the klinik all have two beds, one for patient and one for supporter.
                    Hope that helps.

                    • BobinOz August 26, 2019, 4:54 pm |

                      Good advice Paul, I googled it and they do seem to be experts in Lyme Disease. I have just checked to make sure Kylie is subscribed to this comment thread, and she is, so hopefully she will see a notification of your message.

                      She should get another comment notification from my comment now as well, just to make sure. Cheers, Bob

  • Diane March 3, 2018, 8:11 am |

    Hi there. I just found this post because my husband was just bitten on his baby toe, inside his shoe.
    This is the second time he’s been bitten. The first time was years ago when he was out collecting firewood. He sat on a huntsman and it bit him in the bottom through his denim jeans. I don’t recall any reactions.
    Regarding the video of the guy catching the spider… I assure you, it is not staged!
    I’ve done exactly the same thing. The problem is they are so fast that by the time the rim of the container hits the wall the spider is half way out. Because I don’t want to injure the spider I instinctively release, scream, duck and run! I have a video just like it.
    I don’t scream because I’m scared. I scream cos it lets out the nervous energy that’s building up just before the pounce. That, and the fact that I don’t want the spider on me, but I still want to know where it is.

    • BobinOz March 5, 2018, 5:26 pm |

      Good to hear no damage was done by those two bites to your husbands dinky toe and rear end. As for the video, no, I didn’t think it was staged, I have seen somebody I know do this sort of thing before.

      I agree, it is a problem actually placing some sort of large cup or container over these spiders as they are quick, and if they try to make a run for it just as you strike, you can hurt them. Interestingly though, I have found that often as not, if you stare at them they do stay still, making it easier to catch them cleanly. I tend to use a plastic container which gives a bit more room than a large glass.

      Another tip, which I read online, is to gently brush them into a dustpan and once they’re in there, lightly drum your fingers on the base of the dustpan as this will confuse a spider, making it freeze in its tracks. I do like your kind of ‘jumping over the wall’ approach to this though, maybe I’ll try it myself.

      • ian March 5, 2018, 6:38 pm |

        A technique I use if they are high up is to place a broom gently up against them and get them to climb on. Then it’s a bit of a nerve test as you walk through doorways grabbing alternate ends of the broom as they run towards your hand. They will keep running back and forth. Next time I will actually try that idea of drumming on the broomstick to see if it stops them – thanks for the tip Bob!

        • BobinOz March 6, 2018, 7:49 pm |

          And thank you for the tip, I do like the broom idea for when the spiders are somewhere high up. Trying to keep the spider from making it on to your arm sounds challenging as well, I might just give that one ago.

          I’m a bit of a dab hand with a broom, got a snake out of my house with one once. 🙂

  • Walter January 26, 2018, 6:21 pm |

    I was bitten on the thigh two weeks ago. It crawled up my leg when I was sleeping, as i’ve brushed it off it bit. It was very large. In the morning I had a red blotch the size of a twenty cent piece. For the next five days i felt flu like symptoms. Although the swelling and redness have reduced by half, it is now itchy. I think the reason people are commenting recently is because of an unusual abundance of them this summer.

    • BobinOz January 29, 2018, 7:32 pm |

      Yes, Huntsman spiders are much more active at this time of the year, this post always gets a spike in traffic in the summer. Sounds like he gave you a bit of a nip, and I think it’s quite unusual for some swelling and redness to still be around after two weeks.

      Hope you make a full recovery real soon.

      • Jen February 3, 2018, 2:15 am |

        Too right. I live in Sydney’s Sutherland Shire & I just found one in my kitchen. Had no idea that they like to eat cockroaches.
        If only they looked a little less scary, I’d keep him around

  • Bob H. January 4, 2018, 1:17 pm |

    About a week ago I came across two rather large huntsman spiders in our back porch. On numerous occasions I have caught these huntsman spiders by using a towel or something similar and gently grabbed them and removed them to the garden, cos as you say they are good guys. Over the years I have never been bitten.
    However, last week all I had available was a flimsy handkerchief, so I used that to grab the first one and removed him/her to the garden, but the second one was a bit more aggressive and bit me on the end of my thumb through the handkerchief leaving two distinct patches of venom on it.
    Originally it hurt a bit, like someone had stuck a needle into it and that part of my thumb went numb. A week later it is still numb but of little concern, as it seems to be improving.
    I will still gently remove any huntsman spiders I come across.

    • BobinOz January 5, 2018, 7:52 pm |

      Interestingly I read an article recently that did suggest that although the Huntsman doesn’t bite often, when it does it is usually due to attempts at picking them up to take them outside.

      I think the phrase “biting the hand that frees you” would be apt here.

      Catching these things safely is a challenge, that’s for sure, and I like the sound of your towel method. I have traditionally used a large glass or one of those plastic food containers (if it’s a really big one) and cardboard, but even then I worry that I might hurt the spider if it tries to run off at the moment I try to catch it, as they often do.

      For geckos, I use a dustpan and brush, that works well and I might try it for the Huntsman. I haven’t before because of the likelihood of the Huntsman running up onto my arm from the dustpan, but I’ve just read online that if you tap the base of the dustpan with your fingers whilst the spider is in it, the sound scares it and it will stay still.

      Maybe I’ll try that in future. I bet you won’t be using a flimsy handkerchief again though 🙂

      Sounds like not too much damage was done though, thanks for sharing your story.

  • Drew . a November 26, 2017, 5:56 pm |

    Dear Bob,

    Your facts presented are incorrect.

    1)those are not fangs you circled but pedipalps. You could have googled it before writing instead you are blogging a myth which is inappropriate.

    2) Your statement that bites and symptoms are small and last a few days is again inappropriate. That may be the case sometimes however larger ones can be quite painful. I was bitten by a not so shy one 9 days ago and I have waves of nauseA still, the fevers have stopped but I’ve had muscle spasms and still have burning throbbing pain in the joint, exhaustion AND apparently this may last 3-4 weeks.

    Your post for the sake of entertainment shouldn’t be made without correct information on something potentially more serious.

    • BobinOz November 27, 2017, 6:46 pm |

      Drew . a

      1) I’m surprised you didn’t notice that firstly, I didn’t state categorically that they were the spiders fangs, the clue was in the use of the words ‘I’m thinking’ and ‘I’m no arachnologist’ but how you, secondly, missed the word ‘Update’, which is in bold and right next to that statement, I have no idea. That update which has been there God only knows how long, states quite clearly that they are the spiders palps, not fangs. So many people have pointed this out before you.

      2) Maybe you should have a read of a PDF report on spider bites in Australia, it’s called ‘The Venom of Australian Spiders – Research@JCU’. Have a look at the bottom of page 5 and the start of page 6. They studied 750 confirmed spider bites of which 22.9% were from the Huntsman, so 172 bites. Only 6 % of the total (all 750 in the study) bites were medically significant, none of those came from the Huntsman. In a different report about the Huntsman the conclusion was ‘these spiders were predominantly characterized by immediate pain with a duration averaging 5 min, and associated with bleeding and/or puncture marks and local redness.

      So, no worse than a bee sting.

      Finally, the report concluded (page 6) ‘…that bites from spiders of the Sparassidae family cause only minor effects and these spiders are not dangerous to humans. It also showed that there are no differences between bites from different genera within the family, refuting previous reports that Neosparassus spp. can cause severe effects and should be considered dangerous.’

      As I’m sure you know, Sparassidae = Huntsman and Neosparassus = Shield Huntsman Spider.

      However, the report does also mention severe pain was reported in a small number of cases, but even then, it only mentions local redness and itchiness, and goes on to say the systemic effects were less than that for bites by other spiders. There is certainly no mention of nausea or fevers.

      The following link should open the PDF if not you can Google the title…

      The Venom of Australian Spiders – Research@JCU

      So I think my information, by and large, is pretty accurate. That said, you are telling me you have had a painful reaction, and even though I believe that what has happened to you is quite rare, as it has happened, I’m going to add another update above, as it is important to me to try and be as accurate as possible.

      Thank you for sharing your experiences, even if you did find the need to do that in a rather obnoxious way.

    • Lue January 27, 2021, 4:48 am |

      I’m my reading a few years ago I learned the average reaction is localised. However some people react worse with flu symptoms or more.

      Apparently some people are allergic.

      If I get bitten by mosquitoes I get a fever dizziness and swelling. I’m allergic. It’s called skeeter syndrome.

      Stands to reason there’s be a spider form.

      • BobinOz January 27, 2021, 8:45 pm |

        Yes, I suppose that is possible. I also think that any bite that breaks the skin could introduce an infection that can cause a reaction. After all, that is why we get anti-tetanus jabs.

  • Helen August 5, 2017, 12:59 pm |

    Bob… Your article is great, but does lack a little information about the bite.
    I know there is very little written about huntsman bites but…

    I have been bitten by a huntsman in Minto NSW. In the years before mobile phones had cameras. I woke up to find my face completely swollen on one side… There was no immediate pain, just a slight numbness from the swelling. I couldn’t see out of my left eye for most of that day, because I couldn’t open it. It wasn’t until the swelling went down, later in the day, that I discovered 2 puncture wounds inside my mouth. Hubby looked at it and by the size and distance apart… It could have only been a large spider (We often had them indoors) or a very small snake.(never saw any where we lived!!) It was on the inside upper lip, just under my left nostril. So we concluded that, because I often slept with my mouth open(asthmatic)…. This was how I got bitten!! And we didn’t find half a spider… So it either crawled away and we never found it… or … I ate it!!

    For approximately 11 months, my face would swell at different times, each time less than the time before, until in the very end it was like a cold sore on my lip where the bite had been… Then nothing since. The subsequent swellings were neither painful, nor numb, just annoying. My sister who works as a nurse found an article that described my experience and this was a medical journal dealing with a huntsman bite. So… No one will convince me that that’s not what it was.

    • BobinOz August 7, 2017, 6:28 pm |

      Yes, it is true, there is very little information about the bite of the huntsman spider, I think that’s because so very few people ever get bitten. Given what you said, I’m certainly not going to try and convince you that it wasn’t a huntsman that bit you inside your mouth, but as this Scientific American article points out, it really would have been a quite random event if it did happen. You might like to have a read…

      It’s always difficult with so many critters capable of giving you a bite here in Australia to know exactly what got you unless you capture the culprit. One thing I’m pretty sure didn’t happen though, that’s you swallowing it.

      Surely nobody can eat a whole huntsman spider?? 🙂

      Whatever did get you, and it may well have been a huntsman, it sounds very unpleasant and from the few things I have read about the huntsman bite, I do know that it can be quite painful. Thanks for sharing your story with us, and glad to hear no permanent damage was done.

      Cheers, Bob

  • Sandra May 11, 2017, 6:35 am |

    Moving to the Gold Coast – will be living in an apartment pretty high up in the south port area – the idea of an encounter with a huntsman is freaking me out and actually the reason why immigration from the cold north of Scandinavia has been so long on the way. How likely is is that huntsman will be “living” with us in our apartment…..

    • BobinOz May 12, 2017, 12:08 am |

      Well, they cannot reach the buttons on the lift, so you should all right 🙂 On the other hand, they could sneak into the lift and wait for a human to press a button and if I knew how to do a sad face, I would.

      Seriously though, I think your chances of encountering a huntsman are less likely if you’re high up in an apartment than if you were in a ground floor single-storey house. That’s where I’ve been living the last 10 years, a ground floor single-storey house, and I reckon I’ve only had about four or five huntsman in my house during that time and each one was a gentleman.

      Never any bother at all, they would just hang around, not causing any trouble at all, other than perhaps to other less desirable critters like cockroaches. I probably didn’t get many huntsman in my house because I get an annual pest control spray treatment and if you don’t like spiders, maybe you should as well.

      It works a treat, it won’t stop insects entering your home, but they will be dead within 24 hours and I actually think huntsman spiders are smart enough to know a house has been treated and simply stay away.

      Cockroaches though, they are dumb, so they do sometimes come in and die. Which is good 🙂

  • ian January 30, 2017, 11:26 pm |

    One last comment here (the other thread, 18/03/16, was getting cramped). Yeah, I’ve picked them up a few times. I will pick up anything to save it from someone’s boot. I would never normally pick up anything larger than a 20c coin. I just become brave when they are in trouble. The trick is to let them crawl on to your hand, rather than grasping or restraining them. I would actually encourage you to try it one day yourself, Bob. I’m convinced it would be a rewarding experience! But you need to look for warning signs. Huntsmen are generally real pussycats but I have seen them posture up on occasion, when coaxing them into a bucket etc. Not that they would necessarily follow through with a nip – depends how wound up they get, as you say.

    You can pick up most animals this way I’ve come to realise, if they don’t consider us prey. It is best to know your species though, or read their body language well, as some Mygalomorphs for example are highly defensive and very quick to bite. It may not work for large ants either, I discovered… or perhaps I just can’t read them well. They will try to eat us alive after all. I guess I should have known.

    There is something inherently creepy about huntsmen in particular. Something about their legs and the way they move, despite knowing they are harmless. Even my crow, which I had for 10 years, had an innate fear of them. It would attack anything else that got in range but it literally seemed to panic at the sight of an adult huntsman in motion.

    I have another huntsman story, but another time perhaps. I totally love spiders, and although they do creep me out a bit, most by far, particularly huntsmen are really just insectivorous sheep in wolves clothing.

    • BobinOz January 31, 2017, 7:02 pm |

      Hi Ian

      Thanks for these tips and yes, I think it would be a rewarding experience, but I’m still not sure I’m quite brave enough to do it. I applaud you for having a go though, because clearly you are not 100% comfortable doing it, but you make the effort for the sake of the spider. I would like to think that one day I will be brave enough, but I think my fear is the spider won’t stay on my hand, it will run up my arm and do whatever it wants to do. After all, they are fast.

      I feel a bit foolish not having a go, there are so many videos of all sorts of people handling large spiders on YouTube, letting the spiders crawl all over their faces and all sorts. Bigger spiders than Huntsman as well in some cases.

      In fact I’ve just added a video to the foot of the above article, just for a bit of fun. I think I will stick to my trusty large glass and old Christmas card for removing Huntsman though, at least I’m very comfortable doing that, until who knows, maybe one day, I will pluck up the courage.

      Sounds like I’m slightly braver than your crow though 🙂

      What is interesting about the video though is that the spider clearly does not want to be caught in the first place, but when he does eventually climb onto the guy’s hand, he quite calms down. The spider makes no attempt to get off the man’s body and looks nowhere near like getting aggressive at any time.

      The guy makes it look easy, maybe it is, maybe I need to man up 🙂

      Cheers, Bob

  • Shelly October 24, 2016, 1:12 am |

    I just came across this site on accident. I’m glad I did. I saw a picture of this spider on my news feed and said that’s the spider I saw in my kitchen. I live in Fla and we do have some nasty critters here, and this spider freaked me out so bad that I searched it out for about 2 hours, before I finally killed it. I would not have slept the whole night if I hadn’t. I feel terrible now knowing it wouldn’t hurt me, and that they help keep bugs away. This happened many years ago, and I didn’t have access to the Internet, before you judge me. I’m just glad I now know, Incase I ever see one again. Scariest spider I’ve ever seen.?

    • BobinOz October 24, 2016, 5:53 pm |

      You do sound very remorseful over this incident Shelly, but as you say, it was a long time ago and you didn’t have the benefit of the internet to help you out. I think we can regard the posting of this comment as a confessional and I think we are all happy to forgive you.

      It is even possible that others who feel inclined to kill these spiders may read your comment here and decide they do not want to live with the same burden you have for many years and, because of you, change their mind.

      That would mean that your Huntsman would not have died in vain.

      So, no more sad face Shelly, I think you deserve to cheer up now 🙂

      Thanks for posting this, Bob

  • Dave October 23, 2016, 6:37 pm |
    • BobinOz November 11, 2016, 9:12 pm |

      Yes, came across that one myself a week or two ago, it’s amazing isn’t it? Who would have thought.

  • Kenneth September 22, 2016, 2:55 pm |

    It’s nice knowing they aren’t a threat to us however; what worries me most is when they have babies, and their babies, since it’s still very small, wonders into your fruits or other food or perhaps even inside your body through your nose, mouth or ears while i am asleep.

    • Rick Boutcher September 22, 2016, 5:43 pm |

      Hello Kenneth and if I may, allow me to relieve your stress about Huntsman babies. By the way, I am Rick the one who had Harry living with us in our house in the Philippines.

      About a year ago I opened a kitchen cabinet and there on the inside wall was a female Huntsman Spider and she had clutched in her legs her silk pouch filled with her eggs she was protecting. I did not bother her as I knew she would never bother me or any of my family.

      Three days later I found her again in the closet but she was not alone. Her babies were all out and crawling around her. I would guess there were about 200 of them. But the next day it was just mama. All the babies were gone. They were not in our fruit or fresh vegetables, they were not in our cloths and for sure they were not in our bedrooms. Where they all went I have no idea but for sure they never posed any problem to my family.

      Don’t worry about having a family of Huntsman Spiders in your house, they are of the utmost help in keeping the really unwanted crawly things out of your house. They are totally self sufficient, don’t ask for anything from you yet provide an amazing service of bug watching.

      By the way, the babies were about 1/8th of an inch in size. Look at the pictures of Harry, Oz has put up on this site of his, an amazing site it is for sure, and look at how big Harry was. Think this, a baby Huntsman Spider is 1/8th of an inch in size when born yet will grow to be the size of your hand. How many bugs does this one little baby Huntsman have to eat to get that big?

      Hope this helps put your mind at ease. Hello OZ, always such a great thrill to see your Huntsman site still operational and informative.

      Your friend living in the Philippines . . . . Rick

      • BobinOz September 22, 2016, 7:03 pm |

        Great answer Rick, it’s good to hear from you again and hope all is well for you over there in the Philippines. Cheers, Bob

        • Rick Boutcher September 22, 2016, 8:08 pm |

          Hi Bob . . . .
          Just a quick moment to tell you that everyone here is great, I am absolutely loving the rainy season and it is so wonderful to know that you are up and about and feeling so much better. Good for ya!

  • Puning July 21, 2016, 3:34 am |

    Hello, I’m from Thailand. Just want to share my story.

    The first time I found this big spider in my house was many years ago. She also carry an egg sacs around. I was shock and speechless after saw a hand size spider like that and start google to see what to do with it and is it dangerous.

    We end up didn’t doing anything or do any harm. Another reason is it’s too fast to catch, so we just leave it be.. well, …stay somewhere in our house since we fail to catch it and don’t know where is it running to.

    After that she’s not appear again until today. We saw a smaller version of the same spider. About half of hand size so I guess that’s her kid. My mom saw it first and calling me. I try to shoo it away because it’s night and raining outside. Still little worry because they’re in our bedroom. Even if it’s not dangerous and timid to us human but it’s not gonna be nice if that spider fall or crawling on us while we sleep. So I guess I’ll try catch it and take it outside if it happen to show up again.

    • BobinOz July 21, 2016, 8:16 pm |

      It does sound like a Huntsman, mostly because you say it is very fast. Some species of Huntsman spiders do also carry their egg sac around with them as well.

      I don’t think there’s too much to be worried about, but obviously I really don’t know for sure, I’ve not seen the spider and I know very little about spiders in the Philippines. If it makes your mum feel uncomfortable, then perhaps removal might be the best thing.

      If you can find it again that is 🙂

      If you do decide to remove it though, do try and be gentle. Perhaps capture it in a large glass or jar, place a thin piece of cardboard underneath it to act as a lid and then gently take it outside. Good luck, Bob

  • Arthur July 1, 2016, 11:55 am |

    I was living in Florida in my Double wide trailer when I saw this thing. I spent 30 minutes running around with a Hammer trying to smash it.

    Hammer 1, Spider 0

    I am allergic to Bees. So when I saw this big spider, i didnt wait to kill it. I am Glad now that its not dangerous to us much.

    Glad I didn’t take the chance to find out.

    • BobinOz July 2, 2016, 12:43 am |

      Arthur, you are an idiot. The big Huntsman spider is not dangerous, you should have just escorted it off the premises. Catch it in a jug or something and let out the door.

      Huntsman’s are harmless, in fact they are good as they can take care of the more nasty bugs and critters, like cockroaches.

      Have a little more respect, think before you kill.

  • Eun-Kwon Lee April 15, 2016, 12:36 pm |

    Hi. Let me introduce myself. My name is Lek, korean, who is living in Fiji which is located on South Pacific. I got some questions about spiders.
    Yesterday, I saw a huge and big spider on my bed. I recognized something is wrong on my right hand while I was watching movie on the bed….. so, I saw him or her. I was so scared at that time. The color was… I think it’s black-brown? I’m not sure. An obvious fact is the color of surface was not gaudy pattern.
    I don’t know a scientific name of what I saw the spider. I was going to catch it, but the spider was so so so fast. I could’t get him or her.
    Size of the spider is like my palm(adult). Is it really harm? or harmless?
    My co-workers haven’t seen what I saw so far in Fiji.
    Please advise about the spider. I look forward to receive your reply.

    • BobinOz April 15, 2016, 7:43 pm |

      I can’t say for sure, but by the sound of it, I would think there is a very good chance it was a Huntsman spider. The big clue for me was you saying how fast it was, these things are very fast, hence their name. They hunt down their prey with their speed.

      They are lovely spiders, not venomous, and they very rarely bite humans. If you leave them be, they will hunt down and kill the nasty of critters in your home, these things can take down a cockroach.

      Hope that helps put your mind at ease, Bob

  • Kelly March 18, 2016, 3:00 pm |

    I got a nasty huntsman bite today so I can verify that if threatened (I was stretching against a tree after a run and I think my hand disturbed the spider) they will bite! It was very painful and my hand is still swollen a few hours later with visible puncture marks. I am now more scared of them as the actual bite was like two bee stings and the little devil really hung on!! But I’m alive obvs!!

    • BobinOz March 19, 2016, 12:16 am |

      Wow, this is interesting.

      This post has been up over five years and in all that time I don’t think anyone has commented that they been bitten by a huntsman spider, and then we get two in one week!

      Did we all miss the ‘No More Mr Nice Guy’ huntsman spider meeting?

      Huntsman spider bites are really unusual, so I think both of you have been really unlucky. I’m glad you are still alive though Kelly 🙂

      • Rick Boutcher March 19, 2016, 1:10 am |

        Hi Bob, Kelly and Simon. . . .
        So sorry to read that you guys got bitten by a Huntsman Spider. But in both cases I see that both Simon, grabbing a roll of toilet paper and Kelly stretching out on a tree had both unintentionally trapped a Huntsman Spider with their hand. Now I ask you all, if a giant hand that was attached to a monstrously big thing a thousand times bigger than you, what would you do? Well if you were a Huntsman Spider you would bite to protect yourself.

        While I feel sorry for Kelly and Simon getting bit, it is sort of a good thing as it demonstrates that indeed the Huntsman Spider’s bite is not toxic to humans. Hurts, causes a bit of swelling but does not cause tissue damage as other spider bites can.

        No ones fault here, person did not go looking to hurt a Huntsman spider and the Huntsman Spider certainly was not looking to bite someone. Just two different species of life in the wrong place at the wrong time.

        At the moment Two Winds has four hand size Huntsman Spiders and maybe a half a dozen youngsters roaming around keeping with the job Harry had applied for about four years ago. They bother no one and no one bothers them. As a result, we have no bug or insect problem through out Two Winds.

        Glad to see that you are feeling a lot better Bob.

        Rick and the memory of Harry .

        • BobinOz March 21, 2016, 8:28 pm |

          Rick, I’ve realised that the link to Harry’s post has been buried somewhere in the comments, so lots of people simply don’t know of the good work Harry, and now his offspring, have been doing in your home.

          So, I’ve now corrected that situation and added a link to Harry’s page at the foot of the above article.

          Simon and Kelly, check out the new link at the foot of the above article for your chance to meet Harry the Huntsman.

          • Rick Boutcher March 21, 2016, 8:46 pm |

            Wow Bob, I think that was a very nice thing to do. Harry certainly did a lot here about educating my family about the ability for the two species to live together. I feel your blog about Huntsman Spiders and now this added link to “Meet Harry the Huntsman Spider” compliment each other and certainly both your work and Harry’s story will open a lot of eyes.

            Rick and the memory of Harry. . . .

            • ian January 28, 2017, 4:26 pm |

              I’ve been fascinated by spiders all my life and seen probably hundreds of huntsman spiders over the years. My brother was bitten when he was about 10 and he cried for a minute or two. The only other bite I’ve seen was to my dad’s friend when he tried to pick one up off the wall. Even at my young age I was thinking ‘no don’t do that’ but before I could say anything he was like ‘these things can’t hurt you’, picked it up and promptly got a bite. It didn’t even faze him though – just a warning bite, I guess.

              One of the most savage critters I’ve ever seen was a common Huntsman spider (Isopoda Vasta, I think) but it was totally justified. I found it on a corrugated iron fence in daylight and tried to move it before a bird got it. It dropped down and fell into a gap between the fence and the dead leaves and stuff on the ground. As I gently tried to pry it out with a stick it got more and more fired up and eventually (fairly quickly) had its legs stretched out, and its fangs, and was snapping away at the stick. In all my years I’d never seen anything like it and I would not have wanted to take a bite from that one at the time.

              I don’t want to give anyone the wrong idea though… just trying to point out that even the most gentle of creatures can become a savage monster when pushed far enough… when in fear for their life. Also just saying from a pure interest standpoint. You can occasionally see something which completely throws you. We humans like to try to put things neatly in boxes and over-simplify, to help us understand. The real world is often more complicated than that – and more fascinating.

              • BobinOz January 29, 2017, 9:03 pm |

                Hi Ian, good to hear from you.

                As you say, it’s very rare for a Huntsman to bite a human, but if they are going to do that kind of thing, it’s going to be when they are in fear of their lives. I’ve seen these spiders get picked up before, very gently, by people braver the me and they have not been bitten. But I suppose that very much depends upon how the spider sees it; if he thinks it’s a dangerous situation, then I’m sure he would do what it takes to be dropped on the floor.

                They rarely resort to that though.

                Lots of people are scared of these big spiders, but as Rick has pointed out many times here, they have every right to be scared of us, we are massive compared to them.

                We like to promote being kind to spiders here on this website, especially the Huntsman, simply because they are wonderful spiders.

                Cheers, Bob

  • Simon Allen March 11, 2016, 8:14 pm |

    I was bitten after accidentally putting my hand on one, when grabbing a toilet role. The bite wasn’t too bad and I had no reaction to it. It was ok.

    • BobinOz March 14, 2016, 4:21 pm |

      It is unusual to get a bite from one of these spiders as you probably know Simon. But at least your experience has verified that if it does happen, it’s really not so bad.

  • Marcie Downie January 21, 2016, 5:27 pm |

    I love them!! anything that eats flies, cockroaches, moths and any other bug is good value to me. I leave them be until they start crawling down the wall then i grab them with a tea towel and put them on to the pine tree outside…..

    • BobinOz January 21, 2016, 6:09 pm |

      Good for you Marcie, I’m a fan too, I’d never harm a Huntsman, they are on our side.

  • gazza December 18, 2015, 8:16 pm |

    They are nothing to worry about absolutely harmless they eat the cockroaches for god sake they save you money in the end. They always sit high up on the wall and watch for bugs or can be founds in the bathroom cos they want a drink of water but even tho they say they can bite they will never bite you if you dont harass them iv lived with them my entire life i respect them i hate roachs which is what they eat.. i love huntsman spiders they are great…

    • BobinOz December 18, 2015, 9:45 pm |

      I agree entirely, I’m a fan of the huntsman spider myself. Anything that eats a cockroach is a friend of mine, unless it’s on one of those stupid TV programs.

      The huntsman spider is the gentleman of the spider world.

  • Bernadette November 27, 2015, 11:43 am |

    I would think that it would be more of a worry to be having your house sprayed every year with toxic poisons than having a hoard of huntsmen spiders in your house. Take care of those huntsmens, they are very valuable not only for keeping those nerves tingling, but keeping guard from other spiders. They’re also the best mosquito and insect repellents you can get. I treat them with tender loving care and have often had to rescue them from my marauding husband with a can of spray.

    • BobinOz December 1, 2015, 8:16 pm |

      Good on ya Bernadette, so glad to hear that you fully understand that the huntsman spider is our friend, he is nothing to be afraid of. He is the gentleman of the spider world that we should allow into our homes, he can take care of all the less wanted critters.

      Certainly far more acceptable to the environment than spray could ever be, the trick though is to have a regular supply of huntsman patrolling your house because if they are not there, the others will take over.

      Next time you’re husband pops out, chuck that can of spray in the bin 🙂

      Cheers, Bob

  • Brandon Foster July 4, 2015, 10:58 am |

    I almost forgot. The mythical Iraqi spider isn’t actually a spider it is a Solifugid. Another type of arachnid closer to a scorpion than a spider. Their bite hurts like crazy, but not from venom. It is actually mechanical damage from the bite itself. The Huntsman is the largest spider in the world by diameter, the largest by weight is the Theraphosa Blondi or Goliath Birdeater, which can weigh as much as a newborn puppy at adult size. Sorry, but if you couldn’t tell, I would talk spiders all day long if I could. I envy you living in Australia, tons of bio-diversity and the spiders there are some of the coolest in the world. Take a look at peacock jumping spiders if you get the chance. What they lack in size they make up for in sheer awesomeness.

  • Brandon Foster July 4, 2015, 10:49 am |

    Been reading the conversation, and thought I might add a little. I keep tarantulas and several true spiders. All spiders are venomous with the exception of the Uloboridae family. They lack venom glands entirely and live virtually everywhere with the exception of Alaska, the Sahara, and Arabia. The question you want to ask is just how toxic is the venom that the spider in question produces, and to whom or what is this toxicity aimed. For example, I currently have two species of tarantula that will give one heck of a painful bite to a human. For comparison, one person bitten stated, “I have been stabbed and that hurt less than the bite.” However, the venom from these Tarantulas has been proven to be extremely toxic to dogs, and small animals. Which means that if one were to get out and bite my rabbit, he would most likely die. Needless to say, I keep a pretty good watch over the enclosures as I would not like to be bitten either. The point is, just because a spider is not lethally toxic to humans does not mean that spot or fido won’t have a serious issue. I know people who compare their dogs to children and a loss like that would be terrible. A spiders venom evolved for protection just as much as for hunting… By the way those are definitely pedipalps. Fangs don’t have joints. I wish we had Huntsmans in GA I would probably keep two or three of them.

  • Katie April 9, 2015, 10:07 am |

    Hi all!

    I just thought I’d tell you that I, very joyfully, wasted a large amount of time reading your comments! I adore each and every one of your posts. I stumbled upon this site while researching pics of large, scary spiders. My hubby was telling me of one a friend of his showed him a pic of from when he was in Iraq. I didn’t find that spider but did find an hour or so of amusement!

    Thank you, thank you, thank you 🙂

    • BobinOz April 9, 2015, 6:37 pm |

      Well if it was joyful time Katie, I don’t reckon it’s wasted time, everybody needs a little joy now and then 🙂

      We do have some great spider stories here on this website, but nothing yet from Iraq, well, you are the first. Sounds like it may well have been even bigger and uglier than the spiders we have here!

      Thank you for popping by and saying thank you, thank you, thank you 🙂 🙂

      • Katie April 10, 2015, 11:54 am |

        After some research it turns out that the “scary-big” Iraq spider is mostly built of myth. (Kinda disappointed to be honest…. I love a good scary story!). It turns out that your Huntsmen is the worlds known largest spider… I did, however, (besides disproving my hubby’s creepy crawly stories) manage to scare the crow out of him with pics of YOUR fantastic arachnids!!!

        Thank you sooo much for more amusement!


        • BobinOz April 11, 2015, 3:49 am |

          Perfect! Australia wins another scary critter contest

  • Rick Boutcher April 2, 2015, 8:26 pm |

    Hi BobinOz . . . .
    I do not mean to make you blush Bob, only to make a very vivid point as to how important your blog really is. If it were not for your Blog, the understanding of the Huntsman Spider would not be growing as it is. You have given a special place for these magnificent little monsters and I can not tell you how happy I am that Harry helped you with this monumental task of educating people about the Huntsman Spider.

    Without this blog of yours the information that you are presenting here would never happened. Not only do you present information about the Huntsman, but you have created a special place where people, who have had the incredible opportunity of coming face to face with a Huntsman, have a place to tell their story and in reading all the information you have developed on your blog, helped develop a positive attitude towards this amazing little monster that offers a bug free house for the payment of just being left alone to do his or her job.

    Here in the Philippines things are great; at this time Two Winds has three Huntsman working. All are adolescents about 5 cm in size. Of course I have now way of proving that they are offspring of Harry, but I enjoy the thought that his family is following in his foot steps and keeping Two Winds bug free.

    You and yours have a great day . . . .

    • BobinOz April 3, 2015, 9:12 pm |

      Well, I’m just grateful that so many people, including yourself Rick, have taken the time to come here and tell their stories. It’s been fascinating, I think we have all learnt a lot together.

      And as for those adolescent Huntsman working in your house now, if they look like Harry, then I reckon that’s good enough; they are his 🙂

  • Rick Boutcher April 1, 2015, 9:10 pm |

    Hello Petra . . . .
    Your story of you killing a Huntsman Spider is soulful. I can understand your nerves as the first encounter I ever had with Harry sent chills u p my spin and indeed backed men u p several feet. Believe me, I am not a little guy., but to see a spider that large, that close, un-nerved me. My first instinct was to kill it simply because of Harry’s size. But it was his size that made me think how I was going to accomplish the task and then the other part of brain started thinking and I decided to take a picture and find out what kind of spider this monstrously big one was. One of the great things about digital camera technology is the ability to instantly download the pictures. Down loaded I went to Google and searched large spiders in the Philippines. Low and behold pictures of the Huntsman Spider started coming up and the picture I had taken was an exact match. Searched out Huntsman Spiders and found that their venom is not toxic to humans. No, I did not say they will not bite, I said that if they did bite you, while it surely would hurt, it would not do any tissue damage like other spider Bites can.

    Two Winds is a rather large house and I figured that having a Spider this big running around it in search of things to eat could not be anything but a good thing. So the entire family, that is a number of 12 and the housemaids were educated by me in regard to this giant Huntsman Spider and that is when I gave him his name of Harry.

    Harry is long gone as the Huntsman Spider lives about two years and when I met Harry for the first time he was already full grown. But, we still have Huntsman Spiders in our house. The amazing part that really make me feel good about this particular species of spider comes from the day I got the baby Huntsman Spider to sit on my finger and let me takes its picture. Tiny little thing, to grow everything needs to eat. Huntsman Spiders eat bugs and I can not imagine how many bugs Harry had to have eaten to reach the size that he was, but for sure that is a number of bugs that are not in our house.

    If you ever have the honor of a Huntsman Spider moving into your house, give it a name and enjoy its magnificence. The night I saved Harry from my cat Kato and he jsut sat there and let me take the pictures I did of him, I fell in love with the Huntsman Spider. They really are your friend.

    By the way, is this not an amazing blog Bob has developed here. Quite a guy and his blog has educated many a person about the Huntsman Spider.

    Rick .

    • BobinOz April 2, 2015, 2:22 pm |

      Aw, Rick, every time you say something really nice about my blog, you know you make me blush don’t you? 🙂 🙂

  • Petra April 1, 2015, 8:27 pm |

    Hey guys,
    Really enjoyed reading all the comments and the lovely story on Harry.
    I was doing some research online mainly as i killed one today (i didnt want to!!) and ive been feeling incredibly guilty all day, i even may have come close to shedding a tear when i eventually placed it outside but i think it was too late by then.
    The hunstmen was first spotted by my mother weeks ago & she asked me if i saw it when she returned home that afternoon, i did not. She said it was the biggest shes ever seen (yikes thanks Mum)
    So for a few days i was nervous and on edge inspecting walls everytime i walked around the house,but eventually forgot.

    Last night i was walking out to the kitchen and immedietly noticed a large dark “shape” on the wall to my right… Low and behold it was the huntsmen my mum mentioned weeks ago. HUGE.. No no MONSTEROUS size… I immedietly grabbed my phone & took a picture.
    I screamed for my mum and she confirmed it was the same one she saw weeks ago & shed go call my Dad to kill it… However i stopped her & suggested we leave it be as theyre good for the house, to which i got a very strange look.
    I told her i didnt want to kill or hurt anything unnecessarily and aslong as it didnt end up in my room i was fine…
    Guess where the spider was when i opened my eyes this morning?? On my bedroom wall!!! I actually tossed and turned all night dreading this moment..
    Im not kidding i stared at it for hours… I didnt want to hurt it but i wanted it out of my bedroom & i just couldnt see how, as it had wedged itself into the corner of the wall and the window edge.
    So in the end i got a water spray bottle and was hoping to scare it away with some water but it hardly budged!! It just stretched its legs in a lazy yawn like manner and stayed put. I was losing my mind by this stage.
    I then googled things huntsments dont like and one of the things was heat, so i turned on the heating system in my room hoping it would get uncomfortable and move… It didnt. I had to leave shortly for an appointment by this stage so i had to make a quick decision and i sprayed it with bug spray.. I instantly felt regret and stopped spraying and sprayed it with more water hoping to somehow “wash off” the bug spray. Poor guy struggled a bit at this stage and landed on the floor but did not curl up and die so i moved it outside into the sun for about 2-3 mins to dry it and then placed it into the garden.
    They play dead so although it curled itself up a few times i noticed it stretched itself out again when it felt “safe” again so i was heaps relieved thinking i managed to avoid killing it.
    As i left for my appointment i peered in at the spot i placed it in the garden and it was laying upside down 🙁
    This is the point i actually almost cried, i felt soooooooooooo bad. I turned it back over hoping to see some life and it twitched a little but didnt move. I decided to place a bit of dirt over his body so ants dont get to him … When i came back it was gone. I searched the entire area of that garden & didnt see it.
    My mum says a bird wouldve gotten to it which just makes me feel even worse.
    Anyway i will never ever again kill one no matter how many nights of sleep i lose as the guilt of killing one is far worse. The poor thing wouldve just happily kept to himself or herself (i think it was a girl, very large and fat) but it had the misfortune of coming into my room.
    Anyway this all happened earlier this morning and i still feel so bad and its night time now.
    Ironically enough about an hour ago i spotted a small cockaroach that crawled in through my window and making its way up the same wall the huntsmen had been on today.. Had it not been for my stupidity in spraying that hunstmen, cockaroach would be toast!

    • nathan April 1, 2015, 10:45 pm |

      Thats no good – terrible ordeal totally! The best thing – rather than just leave them be inside, that I have done is two things ( general rule of thumb )

      1. IF they turn up inside, take them out side, as they are sure to end up in your bed/bedroom, simply because you think about it happening, so its going to happen!

      2. Read ” The secret” or see the Video !

      Now you can live in peace 😀

      • BobinOz April 2, 2015, 2:21 pm |

        A very sad and touching story Petra, I think it’s been a very positive move on your behalf to come to this website to tell us of your remorse. Maybe your big Huntsman didn’t die in vain, maybe your story will make others think twice before they aim the bug spray at these beautiful spiders.

        If you still have that photograph of her, maybe you could send it in to me via my contact page and I’ll post it here as a memorial to your dearly departed un-named spider.

        Nathan – Tip 1 = good, tip 2 = are you serious? I have read The Secret myself and no matter how hard I think it, I still haven’t become a professional footballer. I know you think that Petra ‘willed’ the spider into her bedroom with her thoughts, I kind of think the spider just decided to walk there because she wanted to 🙂

  • Shiane March 31, 2015, 11:27 pm |

    Is this poison

    • BobinOz April 1, 2015, 9:27 pm |

      The pest control? Yes, to pests it is 🙂

  • nate March 25, 2015, 9:15 pm |

    Huntsman freak out just as much as humans ( if not worse) when we have contact with each other. Normally im ok with them, so long as I see them coming and they don’t surprise me too much. I watched one walking around on my ceiling the other night while I was glued to a movie, after the movie finished, I got an empty 1kilo coffee jar for him to fit in ( his legs barely made it, had to curl up a little ) and removed him to the outdoors. The worse one (just as dam big) fell right onto my lap, freaked out and bolted str8 up onto my face/hair/head region after I pulled the Sun Visor down while driving. I clearly recall seeing a perfectly focused set of hairy legs over my left eye ball during the panic… Yes It Freaked the crap out of me too … the car swerving with me screaming , arms going in all directions trying to fling this thing off my head.. at the same time hitting the breaks, no hands on steering wheel….The car came to a stop (without incident by fluke) and I bolted right out the door, leaving the car half on half off the road… I never saw that spider again, dunno what happened to it, I looked everywhere for it and eventually got back in the car and continued. If it didn’t fall onto me and bolt up my body so dam fast – no time for me to register anything other than to freak out….if it had just clung to the Sun Visor all would have been ok , but nope :/

    • BobinOz March 26, 2015, 1:06 am |

      Yes, this is an old tactic, used by the Spanish Inquisition. It’s called..


      Now, I kind of feel for you Nate, I’m really not sure how I would react if I were driving the car and a Huntsman fell on my lap. I’d like to think I would breathe deeply, concentrate on the road, look for a safe and legal parking space, check my mirror, indicate and park.

      I’d then (remember, this is still me imagining it) calmly get out, stand up, and gently brush the Huntsman off of my lap guiding him away from the dangers of the road.

      In reality though, I’d probably do what you did.

  • Rick Boutcher March 25, 2015, 7:14 pm |

    Hi Bob and Hello to everyone . . . .

    I am seeing a lot of comments in regards to the Huntsman Spider here on Oz’s Blog lately. The latest is the talk about the video of the man trying to capture a Huntsman while standing on a ladder with the hopes of capturing the Huntsman in a bowl. For sure it was set up by the man trying to do the capture and the one taking the video. But it is quite obvious that neither of them had any idea about the abilities of the glorious Huntsman Spider.

    I had the great honor of having Harry work for me at Two Winds. Bob at Oz posted some pictures of Harry as well as one of a baby Huntsman. While Harry is long gone, his life span of two years far exceeded, I still have a family of Huntsman Spiders that freely roam about Two Winds and take care of the undesirable type of insects.

    I can not stress strong enough as to just how good of a friend the Huntsman Spider is to a house. I know that seeing one the first couple of times can be unnerving, but I suggest everyone do some serious research on the Huntsman and learn about this special critter who is absolutely an asset to have living in your home. I promise, you respect them and they will respect you and keep your house bug and insect free at no cost to you.

    A Huntsman Spider is your best friend!
    Rick . .

    • BobinOz March 26, 2015, 1:00 am |

      I absolutely agree with you Rick, 100%. Whilst there are some spiders to be wary of, the Huntsman isn’t one of them. Crikey, somebody has commented here how they know someone who catches them in his hands and put some on his tongue!

      I’m not suggesting that’s what we all do, but it’s becoming apparent to me that these giants of the spider world just don’t bite or harm people.

      So, what’s the point in removing one from your house? They can take care of your mozzies, more dangerous spiders, other bugs and possibly cockroaches. They are your friend.

      That’s what Rick’s been doing with Harry and Harry’s offspring, it’s worth thinking about.

      Respect to the Huntsman Spider.

  • julielu March 24, 2015, 11:22 am |

    Nope i don’t think the “Daddy” video was staged ! He was obviously braving it out but really messed it up in his panic. That spider was always going to run – it just waited to see which way, after the slow human moved first!

    My rule is: Use the broom if i can’t reach (and then carry outside- far from the house /car).
    Use a glass jar ONLY if can reach the spider easily. (Jar to cover it – must be able to hold with one hand so i can slip paper/card in between spider and wall with the other ( to prod into jar and then cover it).

    I have been victimised by them in my cars- even when driving- and having them land from above after opening doors but I have never been brave enough like the guy in the second vid to “allow” one crawl on me…. eww shudder

    • BobinOz March 24, 2015, 6:52 pm |

      Apart from one thing with that video, if it wasn’t staged, why was the camera rolling?

      These are good rules Julielu, it’s the kind of humane treatment we advocate here with Huntsman Spiders, finding a way of gently removing them and placing them outside. Or you could just leave them there, let them take care of the other smaller critters on your behalf.

      You have read about Harry, haven’t you?

      • julielu March 25, 2015, 5:36 pm |

        My take is that the camera was rolling because Daddy was showing off for Youtube! But Spider gave him his come-uppance! If he was serious and knew what he was doing he would not have gone up a ladder which limited his range and ability. If it was staged he could have gone closer and let it drop on him – its back leg was extended and ready to do that.

        I really wanted to know that Spider was not harmed in making that movie but he and helper skedaddled leaving the dropped camera to keep rolling.

        I do not hesitate once i am in position for a capture he said Huntsmans’ run fast. AND they drop. I believe that Spider was set to drop but changed when the bowl came up. I thought the camera was set to vid and kept rolling after the not- so-“trusty assistant” hi- tailed it too. Her scream sounded pretty “fair dinkum” to me LOL

        As far as I’m concerned huntsman’s are better off doing their good deeds outside – and i’ll take care of the other critters on the inside 😉

        • BobinOz March 26, 2015, 12:53 am |

          You sound like a pretty experience Huntsman Spider catcher Julielu, you have clearly identified mistakes made by this man, novice mistakes, that I didn’t actually pick up on when I first watched the video.

          That said, it’s still obviously staged, under the astute direction of the little girl. She did let out a pretty good scream, didn’t she? A director with acting abilities as well, isn’t that just something?

          Fair dinkum indeed.

          Like yourself, I do hope the spider wasn’t harmed, I’m sure it wasn’t.

          • julielu April 8, 2015, 1:08 pm |

            Wot you’ve never heard the real (and terrified) scream of a surprise “attack” on a huntsman victim – you haven’t been to my house now have you!

            • BobinOz April 8, 2015, 6:57 pm |

              I think I know the kind of thing you mean, I’ve seen it on a Hitchcock film 🙂

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