One of most venomous spiders in the world is currently understood to be the Brazilian Wandering Spider or Banana spider. This spider is very deadly perhaps the worlds deadliest and is even stated in the 'Guinness Book of Records' as being such. I will however state here at Vince's Worthwhile Website that this is not exactly the case.
I will however continue talking about the Brazilian Wandering Spider as possibly the second worlds most deadliest spider.
This spider is indigenous to the tropical and subtropical regions of most areas in South America. It is called a wandering spider as its a real nomad in that it doesn't live in any certain area but likes to roam around and take refuge in any place that it finds suitable, such as cardboard boxes, hollow tree trunks, logs, cars, houses, clothes, shoes and boots.
The photo below shows one of these spiders on the arm of the photographer Teschuser. This was a really risky thing to do and is not recommended for anyone to attempt, ever, if at all. One bite from this creature can be fatal.
Photo credits to Techuser
One of its most favored dwelling places is within bunches of bananas and consequently many of these deadly creatures have appeared around the world more notably in supermarkets.
The spider is the classic stow-away and will secret itself in the center of a bunch of bananas only to emerge when the bananas are being sorted at their destination i.e. the U.S.A, Canada, UK, Germany in fact any country that imports bananas.
The Brazilian Wandering Spider is not just indigenous to South America, as these creatures have also been found in Cameroon, Africa and other hot countries as well. It isn't called a wanderer for nothing and certainly likes to get around!
The Brazilian Wandering Spider has an ostensible reputation as being a very nasty creature to come across due its nature of being extremely aggressive. It can run very fast and will attack anything that gets too close to it, including people. The spider is very nervous, possibly paranoid and this agitated state tends to make the spider chose to fight rather than flight.
The image below of this spider sitting on the hand of photographer Techuser was done at extreme risk and should not be attempted by anyone else and here at Vince's Worthwhile Website I do not promote this display of disregard to the creatures lethality, but its a great photo isn't it!
The toxin that this spider injects into its victims is amongst the most deadly known to man, the neurotoxin is potent, very potent in fact only six thousandths of a milligram is needed to kill a mouse. It carries this toxin in a small sack situated behind its fangs and there is enough there to kill thousands of mice.
The fangs usually remain retracted inside the spiders jaw until needed. When needed the fangs are then released to stab or bite the victim and inject the deadly toxin. Not all of these spiders bites are potentially fatal though, as they can often render a " dry bite " with out any toxin being injected. They tend to do this as a warning shot to discourage any further interaction from the potential threat.
For the uninitiated, the spider is quite frightening and ugly to see, enough to make that instinct in you come alive and make you run off, far away from it. The Brazilian Wandering Spider grows to about five inches in length with a body of about one inch long. They like to eat lizards, mice, large insects and even other spiders. All of course rendered incapacitated by the spiders toxic bite beforehand, the spider can then settle down for lunch.
The Brazilian Wandering Spider will usually rear up on four of is legs to give intention of imminent attack, just before it actually does attack! A threatened Brazilian Wandering Spider is seen below, displaying its apparent annoyance and willingness to attack the threat.
Definitely not for the feint hearted!
Below is a list of deadliest, most venomous spiders in the world, from left to right: the Black Widow, the Brown Recluse and the Funnel Web, these spiders rank quite highly, in fact very highly as the worlds most dangerous and toxic arachnids.
There is one spider missing from that list though, as it is not very well known and is perhaps the most deadliest, most venomous of all spiders, even more so than our friend the deadly Brazilian Wanderer.
THE MOST DEADLIEST SPIDER IN THE WORLD
This spider then is the Sicarius Hahni ( Sicarius: Lat: Murderer ) or The Six Eyed Sand Spider, also known as The Six Eyed Crab Spider and is a member of the 'recluse' ~Loxosceles family of spiders. This spider is shown in the image below.
It is a quiet and shy but fast moving spider that thankfully only lives in the South African desert. It is a light or reddish brown and sometimes yellowish colored spider with a body of about half an inch long and when measured to include its legs is about two inches in length.
Its legs are cambered in slightly like that of a crab and looks similar to the American Wolf Spider or the North American Huntsman Spider. Depending on the actual species, the spiders abdomen can be greater or smaller.
The closest relative of this spider would be the Chilean Recluse Loxosceles spider. When we talk about the lethal poison's that spiders such as the Chilean Brown Recluse have or the poison's that belong to the famously aggressive Sydney Funnel Web or indeed that of the Brazilian Wandering Spider then none come close to the absolute lethality of the poison known as a cryotoxin of the Sicarius Hahni.
The lethal venom of the Sicarius Hahni has what is described as the most potent cryotoxin that has ever been discovered in any living thing, even more potent than the neurotoxin carried by the Golden Poison Dart Frog. The venom of the Sicarius Hahni is a cryotoxin in that it totally devastates and destroys the composite structure of all living tissue and indeed their cells.
How this toxin actually works in the total breakdown of cell tissue is not currently fully understood by science but it is believed that it behaves like an acid, almost like sulphuric acid.
When animals have actually been bitten by this spider they all die with no exception. Some animals that have died via this spiders bite have had an autopsy afterwards and it was noted that the dead animals cell structure and internal organs were all broken down with massive trauma and internal haemorrhaging.
The undisputed lethality of the cryotoxin of Sicarius Hahni means its the most deadliest spider to crawl the earth but statistics portray a picture of almost negligible accounts of death or injury sustained from it. In fact just two reported accounts are currently known about, as explained further down the page.
This is because the spider is very shy and hides away from people, it has almost zero aggressive tendencies and hence getting bitten by this spider is an extremely rare occurrence. When it comes to fight or flight, then this spider chooses flight every time.
The image below is of Greta Binford of Lewis and Clark College, Oregon, USA. Apparently she is called The Spider Woman by friends and colleagues as she collects, breeds and extracts the venom from this most dangerous spider for research and better understanding of it. This is a job that I for one don't envy her for!
There is no known antidote whatsoever for the cryotoxin that the Sicarius Hanhi delivers, if you are bitten then you are in very serious trouble.
There have been reports of two suspected casualties off a bite from this spider, it was death for the first victim due to massive internal bleeding and destruction of vital organs due to the acidic content of the toxin.
Whilst amputation of the limb, in this case an arm, was the only cure for the other victim. Indeed it is advised that the only antidote from a bite from this spider is the immediate amputation of the infected limb! Below is pictured a baby Sicarius Hanhi crawling over a quarter dollar coin for size comparison.
There are over 38, 000 known species of this spider but it is thought possible that over 100,000 species may exist that have never been seen, this is due the spiders habit of concealing itself and hiding itself every time a person gets near to one.
The spider has an ingenious way of hiding which is why they are never really seen, it flicks sand onto its body and legs and thus totally camouflages itself. Regardless of the different colors of sand for the different areas it will always be one hundred percent camouflaged, this due to it using the sand of its habitat at the time, whether its buried or not, the spider will be impossible to see.
Once covered it will remain totally still, not moving at all for a good length of time.
The Sicarius Hanhi will ambush its prey by simply lying in wait either on top or just a few millimeters under the surface of the sand. It will feel vibrations of any little creature passing by and then as the creature gets close the spider will pounce, as fast as lightning and bite the creature. The creature, regardless of size, will start to die almost straight way.
This spider is a true survivalist in that it will store up food energy in its body so much so that it can survive for months if not longer without eating or drinking.
Science has yet to discover why the spider does not die by the inducement of its own toxin, maybe with research, an antidote will one day be found, as a safeguard to be carried by intrepid travellers and those hardy, enduring indigenous peoples of the African Deserts.