Venomous false widow spider found in Kent
A venomous spider related to the deadly black widow
has been spotted living in the garden of an Ashford resident.
Andrew Bennett, of Park Farm, said he found the false widow
spider in his back garden one evening and watched as it killed
other garden spiders.
It is also known to have bitten humans in the past, in some
cases leading to hospitalisation.
Mr Bennett, of Redberry Road, said: "I had found it odd that I
didn't seem to have common spiders around in my garden much this
"I have a friend who keeps unusual and foreign spiders so I
contacted him and asked if he would come and have a look.
"He also felt they were false widows, but was concerned about
the sheer number that are in my garden."
The spider, part of a group called Steatoda, have thrived in
Britain, particularly the south, because of the milder winters.
Mr Bennett is now keen for other residents to keep their eyes
open for the spider and be aware of what it can do.
The father-of-one added: "I have a young son who has always
collected spiders and bugs and I have had to warn him not to go
near them as they have nasty bites.
"Although not as venomous as their cousins the black widow their
bite is very painful and apparently comparative to a bee
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