False widow spiders appear in UK

Posted at 10:57 AM, Oct 24, 2013
and last updated 2013-10-24 10:57:49-04

UNITED KINGDOM (CBS News) — Millions of potentially lethal “false widow” spiders are appearing in gardens after being accidentally brought in to the UK.

The British Arachnological Society said this particular kind of spider was first spotted on the shores of Torquay in 1879.

Records from 1992 to now show well established colonies across Southern England, but the spiders are moving North. In fact, there was one official sighting as far up as Norfolk.

William Fraser got bid by one of the arachnids.

“I felt a headache. I’ve got my arm swollen. It’s hot — and I felt faint. And that was all the symptoms that were in the newspaper about it,” said Fraser. “My arm went red-raw and it was burning sensation and a puss blister formed on my arm.”

Still, Cotswold Wildlife Park’s James Reynolds said the public should not be worried about the spiders because they are not aggressive or found in densely populated areas.