Victim warns people to look out for spiders
A Blenheim man is paranoid about what lurks in the tool shed after a white tail spider bite.
After being bitten by the spider, Peter Crighton said an itch had turned into a throbbing pain.
"It's not gonna kill you, but it is going to mess your day up."
He's warning other people to take care around outside sheds or fire wood piles, where the spiders often inhabit.
When preparing to chop wood at his Riversdale home, Mr Crighton didn't think to check for spiders before changing into a pair of overalls that had been hanging in his tool shed outside. After cutting a few loads of wood, Mr Crighton, who works as a mussel processor in Riverlands with his wife Lynne, took a break in his living room still dressed in the overalls.
He felt a light itch in the middle of his back and rubbed it against the chair to get rid of the itch.
Within a few minutes, the itch had turned into a throbbing pain.
He showed Mrs Crighton who described it as looking like a cherry-red-coloured boil.
She drew a circle around the area and after about 40 minutes the bite had expanded well beyond the circle and was the size of a golf ball.
Mr Crighton suspected he had been bitten by a white tail spider after he began to feel dizzy and sick, but decided to wait until the next day, a Monday, to visit his doctor.
The doctor confirmed he had been bitten three or four times and guessed the culprit was a white tail.
The bite was sliced open with a knife, and a foul-smelling liquid erupted from the wound, Mr Crighton said. "The stench was indescribable," he said.
"It just exploded all over the nurses, I felt so sorry for them."
For the next two weeks, Mr Crighton visited the doctor's clinic daily to get the bite lanced and bandaged. The experience has made him wary of spiders. "Since I've been bitten I'm definitely more aware of them" he said. "I'm probably a bit paranoid."
He wants other people to be conscious of the danger of white tails.
McAs Pest Control owner Andy McAslan says he gets regular calls from people who want white tail spiders exterminated.
The white tail moves very quickly and is found more in older houses. They generally attack out of defence, he said.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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