Sicarius spp.

Harashil

Arachnopeon
Joined
Aug 31, 2008
Messages
33
Salvete

Some pictures of my Sicarius spp.
One of my favorite genera (together with Macrothele and Linothele).

Two videos to start

Hunting

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OuAHmnIa7SA

disguise

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tskYFwWVRZc

And some pictures:

Sicarius hahni (Namibia) 0.1



Sicarius hahni (Namibia) 1.0


Sicarius terrosus (Chile) 0.1



Sicarius terrosus (Chile) 1.0


Sicarius terrosus (Chile) 1.0 eating



S. terrosus (Chile) cocoon


Greetings
Mark
 

Lorum

Arachnosquire
Joined
Jun 10, 2010
Messages
111
Great spiders.:drool: I hope to get some in the future.
 

Tokendog

Arachnosquire
Old Timer
Joined
Aug 7, 2008
Messages
116
This is the species of spider that if it bites you, you basically have to get your limb amputated or you die, right?

If it got out of it's enclosure, and you could not find it, what would you do?

Just wondering...
 

Offkillter

Arachnosquire
Joined
Jun 18, 2010
Messages
149
this is the species of spider that if it bites you, you basically have to get your limb amputated or you die, right?

If it got out of it's enclosure, and you could not find it, what would you do?

Just wondering...
move!!!!!!!
 

insect714

Arachnoknight
Old Timer
Joined
Nov 18, 2005
Messages
213
Awesome Vids....Man I love spiders....Where did you acquire these beauties?
 

bluefrogtat2

Arachnoangel
Old Timer
Joined
Oct 19, 2006
Messages
913
great pics,one of my faves.
i own a few of this species and they are basically pet rocks,u never see them.
great job on the sac,would love to raise these from slings..
andy
 
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Tarantula_Hawk

Arachnobaron
Old Timer
Joined
Nov 24, 2005
Messages
445
Very nice pictures and, of course, very nice spiders.
I have several questions if you dont mind:
Can I ask you bodylenght and legspan of both S.hahni and S. terrosus?
What temperature are they kept at? Is the setup completely dry, or do you spray water once in a while?
Thanks :)
 

Lorum

Arachnosquire
Joined
Jun 10, 2010
Messages
111
This is the species of spider that if it bites you, you basically have to get your limb amputated or you die, right?
No. They produce sphingomyelinase D (a component of the venom), like that of Loxosceles spp., so the reaction could be similar. Getting bite is very improbable, they have very tiny chelicerae, and even if you get bitten by one of these spiders, the most probable consecuence would be a self-healing wound.

http://www.americanarachnology.org/JoA_free/JoA_v36_n1/arac-36-1-150.pdf
 

Tsathoggua

Arachnopeon
Joined
Oct 5, 2010
Messages
23
I am not so convinced, I have seen a short videoclip of a Sicarius species, either S.hahni or S.terrosus being 'milked' via electrostimulation of the venom glands after being anaesthetized with CO2.

It showed the chelicera being lifted gently with a small probe, and it showed a closeup, of a pair of needle-like fangs, around 1mm wide and perhaps 3-3.5mm long.

From what I know of the genus, they are not aggressive, but if you got one pissed enough to take a bite out of you and it chooses to envenomate, it could do a hell of a lot of damage, average venom yield of a Loxosceles reclusa, or L. laeta is perhaps 30-35mg but some Sicarius sp. are capable of delivering ten times that, and the venom contains a concentration of sphingomyelinase-D orders of magnitude greater than that of Loxosceles.

I would think even trifling epidermal penetration of this particular toxin could cause a hell of a mess, if it was cytotoxic via a metabolic mode of action such as say, abrin or ricin inactivating ribosomes and thus protein synthesis leading to cell death, or something like a mustard agent buggering up DNA synthesis by intercalating every nucleotide base pair it gets its teeth into, or the urushiols in poison ivy/oak/sumac triggering cell death by an immune-mediated mechanism then I would agree, a surface scratch that didn't penetrate into live tissue may be insignificant.

BUT, given the cytolytic action of sphingomyelinase-D is enzymatic in action, it is in my opinion quite likely that it would prove able to break down even dead tissue, and carry on down to the live tissue beneath.

Loxosceles sp. are smaller spiders than Sicarius, and as such will have smaller chelicera, and have been known to cause pretty evil looking necrotic wounds, the toxicity of sphingomyelinase-D is without any doubt, as for Sicarius sp. having to deliver it, I would find it very strange if they could not, if they are capable of penetrating the chitin carapace of an insect but unable to penetrate human skin, when the much smaller recluses are known to be able to do so.

And besides, from the video I saw, those fangs are absolutely long enough to penetrate human skin. Latrodectus sp. have tiny araneomorph chelicera and they are certainly capable of delivering a bite and making some poor git miserable as a result.

One thing I wonder, is if bitten by one of these spiders, infiltration of a proteolytic agent such as papain or bromelain 'meat tenderiser' might be able to prevent massive damage from occuring in reaction to the venom by denaturing the enzyme, as it is a complex proteinaceous toxin, in exchange for some local irritation and possibly localised necrosis caused by the meat tenderiser.

It has been used as a remedy for the stings of hymenoptera and IIRC, also the stings of fish in the Scorpenidae family, weevers, toadfish, stonefish etc, or chimaeras, certain catfish and what have you, as it breaks down protein of any kind, including, it seems, the toxic polypeptides and proteins found in many animal and insect venoms.
 
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Harashil

Arachnopeon
Joined
Aug 31, 2008
Messages
33
Salvete

Legspan of S. hahni is about 4 cm and S. terrosus something around 10 cm.

Temperature is between 26 and 30°C. I keep them completely dry, but i give some water every 4 weeks.

They are really venemous - S. hahni is one of the most dangerous spiders of the world. Cytotoxic and hemolytic!

Greetings
Mark
 

x Mr Awesome x

Arachnobaron
Old Timer
Joined
Jul 15, 2009
Messages
449
Wow incredible! I just saved like four vids to my favorites. Thank you so much for sharing!
 

Lorum

Arachnosquire
Joined
Jun 10, 2010
Messages
111
I am not so convinced, I have seen a short videoclip of a Sicarius species, either S.hahni or S.terrosus being 'milked' via electrostimulation of the venom glands after being anaesthetized with CO2.

It showed the chelicera being lifted gently with a small probe, and it showed a closeup, of a pair of needle-like fangs, around 1mm wide and perhaps 3-3.5mm long.

1.- From what I know of the genus, they are not aggressive, but if you got one pissed enough to take a bite out of you and it chooses to envenomate, it could do a hell of a lot of damage,

2.- average venom yield of a Loxosceles reclusa, or L. laeta is perhaps 30-35mg but some Sicarius sp. are capable of delivering ten times that, and the venom contains a concentration of sphingomyelinase-D orders of magnitude greater than that of Loxosceles.

3.- I would think even trifling epidermal penetration of this particular toxin could cause a hell of a mess, if it was cytotoxic via a metabolic mode of action such as say, abrin or ricin inactivating ribosomes and thus protein synthesis leading to cell death, or something like a mustard agent buggering up DNA synthesis by intercalating every nucleotide base pair it gets its teeth into, or the urushiols in poison ivy/oak/sumac triggering cell death by an immune-mediated mechanism then I would agree, a surface scratch that didn't penetrate into live tissue may be insignificant.

BUT, given the cytolytic action of sphingomyelinase-D is enzymatic in action, it is in my opinion quite likely that it would prove able to break down even dead tissue, and carry on down to the live tissue beneath.

4.- Loxosceles sp. are smaller spiders than Sicarius, and as such will have smaller chelicera, and have been known to cause pretty evil looking necrotic wounds, the toxicity of sphingomyelinase-D is without any doubt, as for Sicarius sp. having to deliver it, I would find it very strange if they could not, if they are capable of penetrating the chitin carapace of an insect but unable to penetrate human skin, when the much smaller recluses are known to be able to do so.

And besides, from the video I saw, those fangs are absolutely long enough to penetrate human skin. Latrodectus sp. have tiny araneomorph chelicera and they are certainly capable of delivering a bite and making some poor git miserable as a result.

5.- One thing I wonder, is if bitten by one of these spiders, infiltration of a proteolytic agent such as papain or bromelain 'meat tenderiser' might be able to prevent massive damage from occuring in reaction to the venom by denaturing the enzyme, as it is a complex proteinaceous toxin, in exchange for some local irritation and possibly localised necrosis caused by the meat tenderiser.

It has been used as a remedy for the stings of hymenoptera and IIRC, also the stings of fish in the Scorpenidae family, weevers, toadfish, stonefish etc, or chimaeras, certain catfish and what have you, as it breaks down protein of any kind, including, it seems, the toxic polypeptides and proteins found in many animal and insect venoms.
1.- Yes, they are usually not aggressive. Also, I agree, a bite could do a lot of damage, but not always.

2.- Here is one reference http://legacy.lclark.edu/~binford/SMDDistribution copy.pdf
Table 1, page 27. There is a comparisson about amount of venom from a few species obtained by "milking" them. The two species of Sicarius listed show to inject more venom than most Loxosceles spp. listed (Total venom protein of Loxosceles laeta is also high), so I agree, Sicarius do probably make more damage with one bite than Loxosceles.

3.- It would be very interesting to read about that specific question. Reports (at least, what institutions let us know) of Loxosceles' spp. significant bites in my country show that most of the bites are in soft (slender?) skin zones, such as the armpits. That's in part why I think venom needs to penetrate skin in order to make great damage, but I don't know for sure; what you state also makes sense.

4.- Yes, I think they can penetrate human skin. Maybe there is not enough information about Sicarius spp. bites due to their habits, distribution and docility. Probably it is even easier for them to penetrate human skin than it is to Latrodectus spp. and Loxosceles spp. I have seen people who don't know anything about them, and handle them often, because the dealer told them they are "inofensive spiders". So, I still think getting bite is very improbable (anyway, I would not handle one of them).

5.- That's an interesting thread. It would be very useful. Are natural enzimes such as papain and bromelain cheaper to produce (in mass) than fabotherapics? It would be a good option, if it works.

Well, that's all. I enjoyed your post, it is a very interesting one.

So, in conclusion, Sicarius spp. are fascinating spiders, who usually are not aggressive at all, but they produce potent venom. Anyway, with proper medical attention, a bite should not be fatal (although it has potential to be lethal, and it is possibly more potent than that of a Loxosceles laeta).
 
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Tsathoggua

Arachnopeon
Joined
Oct 5, 2010
Messages
23
Would have posted sooner, but my connection was down, fricken' cat decided my ethernet cable would make a tasty snack.

Those proteases are cheaper to produce than antivenoms by a long shot, I don't think they would be as reliable and effective as an antibody directed against a specific venom polypeptide, which can quickly and selectively bind to and disable circulating venom, a protease would need to be injected intradermally right into the bite site as soon as it was delivered to have a chance at taking out some venom.

Might well leave a nasty lesion too, afterall, they are meat tenderizers, and what is it going to do if injected, but tenderise YOUR meat (yes, I know how nasty that sounds:D), but in the case of an envenomation by a spider like Sicarius sp. that has the potential capacity to strip the flesh off your bones and coagulate blood left right and center, mild, localised cytotoxic lesion would be preferable to systemic rhabdomyolysis and DIC.

Papain and bromelain are widely available as OTC meat tenderizers and herbal digestive supplements, and have been used with some success on envenomations from stonefish, and to remedy stings from jellyfish.
 

the toe cutter

Arachnobaron
Joined
Mar 20, 2010
Messages
424
Tsathoggua and Lorum, :clap: This is by far one of the most enjoyable and interesting threads I have ever read on this site. Well done
 
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