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Issue 138 - September 2012 (1st Edition) - Page 11

Does a Photograph Show a Massive Spider found in a Manchester UK House?

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Outline
Circulating message that features a photograph that depicts a very large spider in the corner of a wall claims that the picture was taken in a house in Manchester and that even the fire brigade was too scared to remove it.



Brief Analysis
The spider is probably real although it is quite unlikely that the photograph was taken in Manchester. The spider appears to be a variety of huntsman, possibly a Giant Huntsman Spider found in Laos. The Giant Huntsman Spider is considered to be the world's largest spider by leg span and can reach over 30 centimeters across. The angle from which the shot was taken may also make the spider look larger than it really is.

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Detailed analysis and references below example.





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Last updated: August 17, 2012
First published: August 17, 2012
Article written by Brett M. Christensen
Research by Steve Williamson, Shevaun Fitzpatrick, Brett Christensen
About Brett Christensen and Hoax-Slayer


Example
THIS was actually found this morning in a house in Manchester, , Fire Brigade were shit scared apparently and handed it over to a spider specialist. Family fled screaming from their home, , think Id do same its like something from a horror movie!!!

Giant Spider On Wall




Detailed Analysis
This image is currently circulating at speed across Facebook and other social media outlets causing the more arachnophobic among us to quake in our boots. According to the message that comes with the image, the spider was found "this morning" in a house in Manchester UK and its discovery caused the residents to flee screaming. The message claims that the fire brigade was called but were too scared to deal with the spider and handed the situation over to a spider specialist.

There is no reason to doubt the authenticity of the photograph and it is probably depicts a real spider. The spider is possibly a Giant Huntsman Spider (Heteropoda Maxima) which are a species native to Laos. These spiders are thought to be the largest in the world by leg span and can reach more than 30 centimeters across. Huntsman of other types are also quite common here in Australia and I have encounters several very large specimens myself in older houses I have lived in. Also, the size of objects in photographs can be quite deceptive and the spider may not be quite as large as it appears to be in the image. Huntsman spiders are not very aggressive and are not generally considered to pose a significant danger to humans although a bite may be painful .

Although probably real, it seems very unlikely that this spider was actually discovered in Manchester as claimed in the message. As noted, Heteropoda Maxima live in Laos and other kinds of Huntsman would not normally be found in the UK. There is also nothing to substantiate the claim that a fire brigade was called to remove the spider. Also, the same spider picture has circulated in other contexts since at last 2011 without any references to Manchester. It is likely that someone has simply invented the Manchester story to enhance the fear factor of the image.

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References

Giant Huntsman Spider
Huntsman Spider - Heteropoda Maxima - Giant Spider
Australian Huntsman Spiders
Huntsman Spiders...low risk - non-aggressive



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Issue 138 Start Menu

Pages in this issue:
  1. Free Flights on Southwest Spam Emails
  2. Robert Duvall is NOT Dead
  3. Woolworths 'Customer Satisfaction Survey' Phishing Scam
  4. Pharmacy Spam Emails Pretend to be From Vimeo
  5. 'Science Guy' Bill Nye is NOT Dead
  6. Baby With Bong Protest Message
  7. Very.co.uk Shopping Voucher Phishing Scam
  8. Royal Mail "Group Shipment Advisory" Malware Emails
  9. Does a Circulating Photograph Show the Approach of Tropical Storm Isaac?
  10. Hoax - Giant Killer Snake Found in the Red Sea
  11. Does a Photograph Show a Massive Spider found in a Manchester UK House?
  12. Hoax - 'Deadly Sanitary Pad' Responsible for 53 Deaths
  13. Boy Shot By Step Dad Charity Hoax
  14. Olympic Tower 2016 - Rio Solar City Tower Design