Are Tarantulas Venomous?

2,534 Views Updated: 25 Aug 2017
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Are Tarantulas Venomous?

Often we judge a book by its cover and the very sight of a large hairy spider would have one jumping on a sofa or running for cover. Maintaining as much distance as possible between yourself and such a dangerous looking creature might seem like a sensible option. No one would want a bite by a tarantula and get infected with the poison.

But that makes you think whether these seemingly dangerous looking creatures who are even kept as pets really to be feared. Are the tarantulas' spiders really venomous or is it a blatant myth?

Are Tarantulas Venomous?

Tarantulas bite are shown as absolutely toxic to humans in all Hollywood movies and it is where the spiders have gained such a bad reputation. Being such huge, photogenic creatures that can easily be handled and pose little to no threat, they were easy to use in every action or adventure movie. Whenever a venomous creature was required to create a dramatic effect, to bite and poison a person, to invade a town in large numbers or to pose a threat to life, the poor old tarantulas were called forth.

(Image Courtesy: San Diego Zoo Animals)

This went on for so long that the truth about the tarantulas' spiders got cloaked in lies. The truth is that all spiders ranging from the little ones that roam around on your ceiling to this gigantic spider have venom. Though, the amount of venom in a tarantula is very low. The ones kept as pets or any of the North American species do not pose even the slightest hazard to anyone. Though there are other varieties such as African and Asian species that might make you a little ill. These kind are obviously not kept as pets and it is advisable not to keep them in the home, though they too do not carry any strong venom in them. The bite might hurt a little possibly because their pincers are sharp and they might even create a bit of muscle cramping.

(Image Courtesy: TopTenz)

New World Species Tarantulas

There are a new world species of tarantula that has a venom which is very weak to humans. They instead of using their pincers, use their irritating hairs of the abdomen as a defense system. These hair are barbed and can cause intense irritation. They can cause skin rashes or inflammation of eyes and nasal passages.

Did you think that the tarantulas are very venomous and dangerous creatures as well? Are there any other animals or insects that you think have got a bad reputation? Leave us feedback in the comment box below.

(Featured Image Courtesy: National Aquarium)

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