Man ‘finds false widow spider’ in Edinburgh

A MAN has found what he believes to be a false widow spider in Edinburgh.

Tuesday, 23rd June 2015, 7:10 pm
Is this a false widow spider? Picture: Contributed
Is this a false widow spider? Picture: Contributed

A video posted on YouTube by ShaunAlexander, a vlogger from Edinburgh, shows what appears to be a false widow spider which appeared at a home in the Capital.

In the video, the man can be seen searching for the spider on the internet, after his mother found the false widow on a towel as she prepared for a shower.

While there have been sightings of the spider - cousin to the deadlier black widow - in Scotland in the past, the arachnid is more commonly found in parts of southern England.

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Is this a false widow spider? Picture: Contributed

Originating in Madeira and the Canary Islands, it is believed that the false widow originally arrived in the UK in the 19th century, possibly among cargo deliveries, and is reported to be an established species in parts of Ireland.

The false widow made headlines in late 2013 after a Kent man was left with lesions on his leg after being bitten while a 39-year-old decorator almost lost his leg after disturbing a false widow nest while working in an Essex school.

Surgeons were required to cut open his leg and drain the venom out after his thigh swelled to twice the normal size after he was bitten.

In Scotland, a Glasgow father-of-two claimed his daughters had found one of the spiders in their living room while an Edinburgh resident trapped a false widow in a takeaway box after it appeared in his Clermiston home.

And in East Kilbride, it was reported that up to 15 false widow spiders had been disturbed in air ducts at the town’s Envirogas plant.

In September last year, a university student spent a night in hospital after suffering what doctors diagnosed as a spider bite - but were unable to identify what spider might have caused the wound.