Boy survives bite by one of world's deadliest spiders in Australia

Boy survives bite by one ofworld's deadliest spiders in Australia

A 10-year-old boy in Australia has survived a bite from one of the world's deadliest spiders.

Matthew Mitchell was clearing out the shed with his father in Sydney when he was bitten by the funnel web spider, which was hiding in a shoe.

See also: Gigantic spider creeps out British tourists in Caribbean

See also: Black widow spider found on Gatwick plane

He survived after being given the biggest dose of anti-venom in the nation's history.

He was given 12 vials of anti-venom and his recovery has been described as "incredible".

According to the Telegraph, the general manager of the Australian Reptile Park, Tim Faulkner, said: "I've never heard of it - it's incredible. And to walk out of hospital a day later with no effects is a testament to the antivenom."

According to the Metro, Matthew told Australia's Daily Telegraph: "It sort of clawed onto me and all the legs and everything crawled around my finger and I couldn't get it off."

The spider was captured and taken to the Australian Reptile Park, which will milk its venom for use in future rescues.

Australian funnel-webs are one of the most dangerous groups of spiders in the world and are regarded by some to be the most deadly, both in terms of clinical cases and venom toxicity.

Boy survives bite by one ofworld's deadliest spiders in Australia

They are attracted to water and hence are often found in swimming pools, into which they often fall while wandering. The spiders can survive immersion in water for several hours and can deliver a bite when removed from the water. They also show up in garages and yards in suburban Sydney, as in the case of Matthew Mitchell.

Funnel-web spiders are not normally aggressive, but they will defend themselves vigorously if frightened or threatened. During an attack, the funnel-web spider generally maintains a tight grip on its victim and bites repeatedly, making it an especially traumatic experience and increasing the risk of severe envenomation.

There have been 27 recorded deaths in Australia in the last 100 years from spider bites. Most victims were young, ill or infirm. Bites from Sydney funnel-web spiders have caused thirteen deaths (seven in children).In all cases where the sex of the biting spider could be determined, it was found to be the male of the species.

Anti-venom has limited its potential threat since it was produced in the 1980s.

World's most venomous spiders
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World's most venomous spiders
Redback spiders are very common in Australia and are closely related to the black widow. These small spiders are responsible for the majority of spider bites in Australia, but they are rarely life-threatening. Only the bite of the female is toxic and possible symptoms include itching, sweating and muscle weakness.
These much-feared spiders live in temperate regions around the world, including the southern states of the USA. They are generally found in woodpiles and outhouses. Bites produce muscle aches, nausea and paralysis of the diaphragm that can make breathing difficult. Although the bite is potentially fatal, deaths are relatively rare: the spider only bites in self-defence.
There are around 900 species of tarantula, and most are not dangerous to humans. However, some species, particularly those found in India and Africa, are more venomous. 
Native to Florida, USA, the venom of the golden orb weaver is potent but not lethal. It has a similar effect to that of a black widow spider with redness and blistering that usually disappears again within 24 hours. 
The brown widow is native to South Africa. They are highly venomous to their prey but are very timid and rarely bite. When they do, they are unlikely to inject all their venom, but if they do, they cause dull, numbing aches, muscle cramps and abdominal pain.

Found in midwest, south and Southeast USA, the brown recluse is one of the most poisonous house spiders in the USA. It tends to hide in footwear, clothing and beds. Its bite is extremely venomous and causes massive tissue loss and subsequent infection.

Typically found in tropical regions, these brightly coloured spiders have 360 degree eyesight. The spiders are only poisonous to humans if the venom causes a severe allergic reaction.
The female black widow only attack humans when they are provoked. Their bites can cause extreme pain, cramping and nausea. They can be found in the USA, southern Europe, South America and many parts of Africa.
Wolf spiders earned their name because it used to be believed that they hunted in groups. These spiders don't make webs but actively hunt for their prey and can move extremely fast when they are disturbed. Although their venom is poisonous and medical attention is vital, it's not lethal. 
Regarded as the most dangerous spider in the world, Brazilian Wandering spiders are active hunters and can travel great distances. The spider will bite in order to protect itself, but unless startled or aggravated, its bites are 'dry' (without venom). A venomous bite is more likely if the spider is hurt and the bite will result in muscle shock which can kill a human.
The funnel web is one of Australia's deadliest animals, with a venom that is packed with at least 40 different toxic proteins. A bite from a funnel web causes massive electrical overload in the body's nervous system and deaths occur from either heart attack or a pulmonary oedema, where the capillaries around the lungs begin to leak fluid and the patient effectively drowns. Death can come as quickly as two hours after a bite if no medical treatment is sought. Due to advances in anti-venom, there has been no death from a Funnel Web bite in Australia since 1980. 
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