Has anyone noticed there are far too many stories about spiders going around these days? In the latest, a nest of venomous black widow spiders was found in Mexican grapes bought in a U.K. Asda supermarket and the family that purchased the grapes noticed just in time.
The Inquisitr reported in May on a similar story that happened in Vermont, where a woman reached into a bag of grapes and was bitten by a black widow spider. Now, a similar tale hales from Leamington in the U.K.
The family had just bought the grapes and, upon leaving the supermarket, were about to start eating them when they noticed something moving around in the bag. On closer inspection they could see it was a spider, crawling around among the grapes.
— Coventry Telegraph (@covtelegraph) June 3, 2015
Reportedly, they panicked and immediately threw the bag of grapes into the nearest garbage bin. On later inspection by experts, the spider inside was confirmed to be a black widow spider, all the way from Mexico. But that wasn’t all of it: the darn thing had apparently just given birth, so it wasn’t just one spider, but lots of little baby black widow spiders, too.
According to the Coventry Telegraph, this happened at the Asda supermarket in Leamington at around 7 p.m. local time Tuesday. Police called the Warwickshire Wildlife Sanctuary in Nuneaton close by for help to deal with the issue.
— Leamington Courier (@leamcourier) June 3, 2015
According to Geoff Grewcock from the wildlife sanctuary, black widow spiders are “very venomous” and the various species can be found on virtually every continent on Earth with the only exception being Antarctica.
“The police contacted us to help deal with it and we went out there and discovered it was a black widow.
It has given birth now though, so there are more black widow spiders. We have seen a few babies in there but they can have up to 400 eggs.”
While everyone wraps their mind around the thought of 400 eggs all hatching at once, feel safe as the black widow spiders are currently being housed at the sanctuary until specialists can collect them later on Wednesday.
An Asda spokesman said that they “take these matters very seriously” and are launching an investigation to determine how the mother got through their various produce checks.
“We are in contact with the customer and would like to reassure all our customers that these types of incidents are extremely rare and that we have robust processes in place for identifying pests including spiders.
All our grapes are fumigated and cold stored but very occasionally a spider hangs around. We sincerely apologize for any distress caused.”
Presumably they will thoroughly check the rest of the shipment and hopefully find these were the only black widow spiders who traveled in the batch of grapes from Mexico.
As this ended up being a nest of spiders, is anyone else worried about what happened to the black widow spider’s mate? While experts say in “some species” they kill and eat their mate, apparently not all of these spiders do. Maybe check in the Asda fruit aisle?
The Mirror Online ran a brief poll asking readers if they are afraid of spiders. At the time of writing, 83 percent of readers responded, “Yes, and now I’m scared of grapes too.”
[Image: CC by-SA 3.0 Chepyle]