Spiders In Australia

a red back spider in Australia eating a snake!!

a red back spider in Australia eating a snake!!

I'd like to know about Spiders in Australia and other insects.

I am really not good with insects and creepy crawlies. The thought of seeing a big poisonous spider terrifies me but I really want to visit Australia.

If I am only planning to go to Sydney, Melbourne and the Great Barrier Reef, will I be OK or is there still a chance that I might come across a big spider or other equally horrid creepy crawlies

Lorraine

ANSWER

So you've heard that we have poisonous snakes and spiders in Australia!

This is true! For most travelers, you won't come across either of them. When I first arrived in Sydney, I spent the first couple of weeks checking my shoes and sun visor in the car expecting to find a spider after all the stories I had been told.

In my 7 years here in Australia, I've only had one encounter with a large spider( and that was a totally harmless one) and I've only ever seen a snake at the zoo!

Spiders are common even in cities. They are likely to be bigger and hairier than back home but they are harmless.

There are two spiders that could do you some serious damage - The Sydney funnel web and the Red back. You may be very unlucky and spot a funnel web in the blue mountains or other areas of thick bushland around Sydney but not in the city. So, unless you plan to camp out in the bush, it's unlikely you will see one.

Red backs are found all over Australia but again are very rare. They are very noticeable because of their red backs!!

The majority of snakes are harmless and unless you plan to go walking bare foot in the bush or rainforests, you should be very safe. Again, if you are camping, take special care.

Mosquitoes however, you will come across, especially in the tropical north e.g. Cairns where the Great Barrier Reef is, or Darwin. I regularly get bitten when eating outdoors here in Sydney if there is any type of grass or shrubs around. Make sure you wear repellent.

See the link here for more information on spiders in Australia

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