Nov 15 2011

The Australian Redback spider is in Britain

Redback Spider (Latrodectus hasselti)

In the news from the Sun newspaper….

Killer spiders from Australia invading Britain

SCARY spiders from Down Under with a painful bite that can KILL are being found all over Britain

The Australian redback, a relative of the Black Widow, is one of the deadliest in Oz.

Redbacks were found all over Britain, including a dozen at a factory in Preston, Lancs. Pea-sized with a red stripe, their bite causes pain, swelling, nausea, chest pain, fever — and responsible for 14 deaths in Oz.


Red back spider bites caused 13 known deaths until Dr Straun Sutherland discovered the cure, in 1956.

There have been no deaths in Australia from a confirmed spider bite since 1979…

More than 250 cases of redback spider bites receive antivenom each year. Antivenom is available. No deaths have occurred since its introduction.

How big is the Redback spider?

Size range
1 cm (female); 3 mm – 4 mm (male)
Red Back Spider size

1 - 683

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