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Phoneutria pictures

Discussion in 'Other Spiders & Arachnids' started by Bjoern Elksnat, Apr 22, 2010.

  1. MrDeranged

    MrDeranged He Who Rules Staff Member

    Admin Note

    You are all beginning to get me to the point where Debby will have to give me an infraction for breaking the language rules.

    I would much rather not have to pre-emptively close any thread that mentions Phoneutria.

    They're in the hobby, get over it already.

    There are plenty of things in the world that I would rather that people wouldn't have access to a lot more than a species of spider.

  2. blacktara

    blacktara Arachnobaron

    1) We're trying toi have a discussion about the threat posed by a Phoneutria bite

    2)I posted a medical reference and discussed it

    3)The post about "hand on glass" was, in fact, NOT towards Fran - since he isnt the one that asked if the guy was holding the spider

    Fran - I am not saying that a bite wouldnt be unpleasant and likely monetarily costly. Bottom line, something doesnt have to be deadly for ME to decide that the risk/benefit ratio isnt worth it. OK?

    Whacking myself in the balls with a ballpeen hammer COULD prove fatal. Probably not, but COULD. More likely, it's just gonna hurt a lot, and cost me some pride and money. That doesnt mean I suddenly think it's a good idea and run off to find the hammer ...........

    Bottom line - In my MEDICALLY TRAINED opinion, referring to something with a 0.25% mortality in the literature as "potentially lethal" but in a way that confuses "potentially" with "probably, or significantly likely to be" is GROSS misrepresentation of any provable data

    Again, this doesnt mean I think people should handle the critters. This doesnt mean I think it's a great idea to keep one (though I dont think it should be illegal). Or more specifically, since I dont think I am the guy who gets to allow folks to handle or own them - I can say, I wouldnt handle one, I wouldnt mess with one, and I am noit going to seek to own one - EVEN tho it almost certainly wouldnt kill me

    All it means is that I was trying to clarify and quantify (with scientific data behind my claim) just what the level of threat really might be

    And if doing this gets me labelled a troll or gets the thread shut down, then

    oh well
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2010
  3. blacktara

    blacktara Arachnobaron

    Now about the snake bite article I mentioned - Journal of Applied Toxicology, Vol 14(3), 191-193 (1994)

    I was intrigued enough to download it

    Kinda disappointed cuz there's not a whole lot of real specific conclusions and not nearly as much hard data as you'd like, but here's a summary

    274 bites - 75% SUSPECTED to be mamba, cobra, or puff adder

    BUT, only 83 (31%) positively identified as in an expert got a look at the snake.

    15 confirmed black mamba bites. 2 of the 5 deaths confirmed to be from black mamba. 1 from cobra. 2 snake not positively identified

    Does not say what the breakdown was on how many of the bites for any species got antivenom, or how many of the deaths did or did not get antivenom

    4 of the 5 deaths were children, the only adult a young female bitten twice on the thigh by a confirmed cobra

    so in the end - lets just take black mamba - of fifteen known bites, 2 lethal - so mortality 13.3%. If the two unidentified snake deaths were also black mamba, you;d be at 4 of 17, or 23.5%.

    Now - that is significant mortality - but hardloy the death sentence that common myth would attribute to this snake.

    Bottom line - 5 deaths of 274 bites in a part of the world where a big percentage of the snakes around are venomous - to me that suggests lots of dry bites, but cant prove it

    Other bottom line - there is sadly much less medical data, and even sparser real good complete medical data on these things than there is myth, folklore and scare mongering

    anyone interested in any more details of the article is welcome to pm me (it's not an award-winning piece of medical research)The last sentence - their final conclusion is "It seems that in general, people in rural Zimbabwe have a poor knowledge of snake identification" :rolleyes:
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2010
  4. Irks

    Irks Arachnosquire Old Timer

    This thread is about pictures guys. They are excellent pictures, by the way, thank you for sharing.
  5. blacktara

    blacktara Arachnobaron

    Fran and everyone else. For what it's worth, I am a hospital based internist. I have treated a good nukmber of arachnid and pit viper bites

    Widow bites, recluse, confirmed copperhead, rattlesnakes (suspected timber rattler, suspected eastern diamondback, one where the description of the snake sounded like a pygmy rattler - ie Sistrurus instead of Crotalus) confirmed western diamondback including one case where the snake's venom appeared to have some neuotoxic component to it ( which happens with CAtrox)

    I do not delve in pediatrics, so have no personal experience bites in children - youngest victim I have treated was a seventeen year old tagged by a small CAtrox earlier this month)

    At my institution, because of experience and my interest in the topic, I am the guy they call for treatment of venomous bites. (tho I am not anything like a nationally recognized expert in this area)

    Of the spider bites, one widow bite had a somewhat rocky course. He was never in imminent danger of dying. He was an old guy with known heart disease. The others were adults who had varying degrees of flu-like discomfort. Seen one recluse bite that needed significant plastics work, others that were ugly but didnt prove permanently disfuguring

    The snakebites - (including one suffered by a friend and partner in my practice, probably a copperhead bite - he stepped over a rock without looking while dove hunting) all resulted in MAJOR pain - one lady lost a finger. All but one of the pit viper bites got one or more doses of Crofab, a couple had significant coagulopathy issues, one was in intensive care for a week or so. A couple of the rattler bites needed surgical debridement at some point, one or two got fasciotomy due to developing a compartment syndrome. Several others did get a surgical consult (which I'll do routinely if the boite is on a hand) but never needed actual surgical intervention

    Stupidity played a part in several bites - a guy who went gardening with stuck an iungloved hand into a low dark hidden area where he could not see but where he had previosuly seen several black widows in their webs, drunk dudes trying to impres females by playing croc-hunter with snakes, and the like. Worst was a guy who finds a copperhead, puts it in a bucket to later show his family what a dangerous snake looks like, later notices odor from the bucket, decides something must be wroing with the snake, dumps it in his bathtub and gets bitten while trying to WASH it - then takes the snake toi the VET - who tells him the snake looks to be just fine but suggests he get himself to an ER) - true story

    Most unfortunate snakebite victim story - guy near Shawnee Oklahoma step out on his porch in the dark in bare feet - feels something pinprick his foot, reaches down to swat at it, feels a tag on his hand, looks down to see the copperhead that just bit him twice and subsequantly tumbles off the porch landing on a rattlesnake that tags him on the backside (true story - three snakebites in fifteen seconds) - and an ER legend to this day

    Had a colleague at one point who had treated a coral snake bite - patient needed short term ventilator support, discharged in under a week and went back to a totally normal existance

    None of the rattlesnake bites were "dry", one copperhead bite was basically a dry bite.

    A pit viper bite is more than likely to be a significant medical issue, and quite likely serious. It's nothing to sneeze at. And it's almost guaranteed to be the most painful thing one will ever experience. (more than one case of grown men in pain that brought them to tears for days despite major doses of narcotic pain meds). One copperhead bite suffered by a young guy who reached into a nook in a woodpile in the dark and got tagged in the joint space of a finger in particular sticks in my head as the epitome of excruciating pain (NOT the person who lost a finger, by the way)

    Little known fact about US rattlesnake bites - Crofab, the most commonly available "antivenom" here in the states has particularly poor efficacy against one certain species (C O HellerI) = southern pacific rattler. It's venom is NOT used in making Crofab - it's the one native species where the Crofab would be likely to not work well. Have discussed case reports of non US pit viper bites treated successfully with Crofab

    I have not actully seen or treated a Phoneutria bite - but the referenced article is good literature (as oppoised to the snakebite article I discussed above) It's a good sized and well data'd stiudy from folks who knwo this spider

    Bottom line - I daresay I am more qualified to discuss what the actual threat is than most folks taking part in this discussion.

    Take it for what you will - a combination of anecdotal evidence, personal experience treating these using evidence based medicine, and my review of available medical literature

    No flaming - not a personal attack

    Again, if that makes me a troll in someone's view - they are entitled to their opinions
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2010
  6. MrMatt

    MrMatt Arachnoknight Old Timer

    Awesome spiders, would love to see more stateside.
  7. blacktara

    blacktara Arachnobaron

    A little more medical stuff - let's address "cardiac effects"

    Some terminology first -

    Arhythmia is technically not a correct term most of the time It's absence of a rhythm - i.e. asysytole. Also, technically, that makes it a lethal dysrhythmia

    Dysrhythmia - an abnormal rhythm - i.e. - not your normal rhythm. Some are significant, some are not, some can or be or can noit be

    Tachcardia - a fast heartrate. A dysrhythmia. Sometimes signifcant and potentially dangerous, sometimes not. A tachycardia that results in hemodynamic instability would be signifciant. Tachycardias can be atrial or ventricular

    Other dsyrhythmias include things like heart blocks, which may or may not be dangerous. Or fibrillation - Atrial fibrillation carries risk of adverse effects but may or not may result in hemodynamic comporomise. Ventriuclar fibrillation is another matter entirely - it is a rhythm tht can not result in adequate perfusion - a lethal rhytm if not treated promptly

    Rhythm issues arent the only potential cardiac effect. You could get ischemia or infarction. Ischemia results in risk of actual permanent tissue damage, infacrtion is actual tissue death.

    And besides direct cardiac effects, circulatory effects, which, although in the same rewalm, are not a priori the same. You could get a rise or fall in blood pressure, for example, which may or not be severe enough to be actually dangerous. Or you could develop "capillary leak" issues. The list could go on

    The point here is multifold-

    1) a bite that results in an identifiable cardiac effect would be more than a mild envenomation, but not necessarily a serious one.

    2) This stuff is NOT black and white, espedcially as could be discussed by an otherwise nonexpert hobbyist

    So, unless you are - an expierenced arachnologist or herpetologust with reasonable knowledge of specific toxicological issues, or a trained toxicologist, or have significant medical training, preferably an actual MD vs nursing or EMS training, you just arent really qualified to be knowledgably discussing what the terms mean to those trained in the fields, much less the actual threat

    This is why the perceived threat and the actual threat are often very different

    Sorry if that sounds arrogant in any way -but it's the way it is
  8. I appreciate the references you're making to the possible effects of phoneutria venom. I've already expressed my opinion that dealers should not be selling these, although I personally don't really want government involvement in regulation because I think it will lead to over-control. I also realize you're stating your experience with venomous bites and the seriousness of some bites over others. However, I don't appreciate any comparison of any kind between spider bites and snake bites. The venom from spiders is far less serious than the venom in snakes and the aftermath of a snake bite can leave life altering scars. The aftermath of most, if not all, tarantula bites is no long-term effects, no scaring, no long-term physical harm. I have seen many photos of horrible scars and loss of limbs from snake bites. This isn't for you blacktara, but here is a reference to one.


    I would have to say, that even a bite from phoneutria, is likely less serious than a bite from many poisonous snakes. But as long as you have started the comparison I want to point out a few things.

    1. Most of the time, permits are required to keep, breed and sell poisonous reptiles. (Precisely because their venom has much more serious effects on humans than arachnid venom)

    2. Venomous reptiles are much more common than phoneutria in the pet trade. Not many good studies have been done with phoneutria yet. (At least not many I can find) I am quite fluent in Spanish and can get by in Portuguese and I couldn't find much even in those languages.

    3. If a poisonous reptile gets loose, it's easier to find than a half grown phoneutria. (Which I would think, could end up in a shoe or pant leg in someone's closet.)

    4. Because most arachnids really pose no danger , it is easy to underestimate the possible danger from something like phoneutria. Are some people handling phoneutria? You know the answer is yes.

    5. I'm going to make this point once again. Whether phoneutria are as bad as some say or not, the impression most people have isn't based on scientific literature, but from places like wikpedia or Yahoo.news, both of which feed people's hate for spiders. Just knowing that phoneutria can kill, and that they are labeled as the most venomous spider in the world in popular culture, is enough to bring scrutiny to the hobby in general and invite regulation, which would be detrimental to the hobby.

    Now back to the photos.
  9. Can anyone give, with near 100% positivity, an id on this spider? I believe it to be phoneutria fera. The photo was taken in Eastern Peru last year.

  10. blacktara

    blacktara Arachnobaron

    "5. I'm going to make this point once again. Whether phoneutria are as bad as some say or not, the impression most people have isn't based on scientific literature, but from places like wikpedia or Yahoo.news, both of which feed people's hate for spiders. Just knowing that phoneutria can kill, and that they are labeled as the most venomous spider in the world in popular culture, is enough to bring scrutiny to the hobby in general and invite regulation, which would be detrimental to the hobby. "

    Which is exactly why I think that trying to spread ACCURATE information, and NOT partaking in spreading or reinforcing rumor, hype, outright falsities, and misinterpreted half-truths is what needs to happen
  11. PsychoSpider

    PsychoSpider Arachnoknight

    @Blacktara:Exactly, now I'm gonna go finish my flux capacitor.
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2010
  12. :clap:Really neat pictures
    :eek:A spider that I would NEVER keep.

    I've read a lot of post where Tarantulas have escaped from their enclosures. What would you do if this kind got out:eek: How would you deal with an escape?
  13. blacktara

    blacktara Arachnobaron

    Based on what some folks think, you would evacuate every living creature within a fifty mile radius and call out the National Guard
  14. Really, I didn't even think about the National Guard! Good idea! ;P

    But this is an extremely dangerous spider...so, you must have some idea of what needs to be done. Not to have a plan is stupid. And if your in an environment where this species can thrive, maybe dept. of Agriculture or SOMEONE should be notified. Not just the use a red light and look under the furniture at night kind of thing should be done.

    I think in very experienced hands this spider could be kept, and well to be honest, I'm sure there are plenty of kids that keep these in it's local region (with out their parents knowing!)

    But surely someone who keeps hots like this must have a plan other then just the odd comment of call the national guard and evacuate the area.

    Is this species being kept in a room that can be sealed off from the rest of the home/facility type of planing. I think that I would keep animals like this or deadly snakes in a safe room that was sealed from everything else, that way a OOPS my Phoneutria got out kind of thing could be kept under control. Not just in someones tank with a lid on it thinking that's acceptable security.
  15. Scorpendra

    Scorpendra Arachnoprince Old Timer

    Anything's potentially dangerous in the hands of an idiot. Problem is that there's no way to differentiate without being an elitist prick. But if you ask me, I'd be more afraid of an idiot parading around a poorly-trained dog than an idiot with a spider caged up in his room.

    I think any animal deserves a certain amount of respect when working with it. Phoneutria obviously require a large amount that entails almost never opening its tank, ensuring maximum security at all times, and taking extreme care when doing anything involving it. Would I be willing to give this respect? Maybe. Would I be prepared for Murphy's Law, able to afford Phoneutria antivenin, or prepared to take responsibility for a piece of bad publicity that would surely kill the hobby in the US? No.

    But I still like the spiders themselves.
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2010
  16. Fran

    Fran Arachnoprince

    Very well exposed. I agree.
  17. Bjoern Elksnat

    Bjoern Elksnat Arachnosquire

    Hi mate,

    DEFINETLY Phoneutria boliviensis female, no Phoneutria fera (I have posted the peruvian version of P. fera (ex Iquitos) early in this thread, the red version, opposite to the French Guyana version.

    But nice pic!



  18. I love the fact that you are thinking this seriously about it. But...They are not HR Gigers "Aliens" you know.
  19. Thanks Björn. I appreciate the ID. :)
  20. Scorpendra

    Scorpendra Arachnoprince Old Timer

    I don't think I'm the one who needs to be told this. ;)
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