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Viral video of Huntsman spider dragging a mouse wows the Internet

“So we proceed to his place and he shows me this. Huntsman trying to eat a mouse,” wrote Jason on his Facebook page. On the video, you can hear a voice asking, “What’s he gonna do with him? Man that is so cool”.

Huntsman spiders are common in Australia and other southern regions of the world and can grow to have a leg span of 10-12 inches (250–300 mm). They are members of the Sparassid family and have eight eyes. The eyes appear in two largely forward-facing rows of four on the anterior or front aspect of the head or prosoma.

As adults, the Huntsman spiders do not build webs, but hunt and forage for food. They normally eat insects and other invertebrates, and occasionally small skinks and geckos, and apparently an occasional mouse or two, based on the video.

Hermie retrieves his dinner.

Hermie retrieves his dinner.
Jason Wormal/Facebook

In the video, the spider can be seen dragging a dead mouse up the side of a refrigerator in the hopes of enjoying his early morning meal in peace. It is unclear if the spider actually killed the mouse, although they do use their venom to immobilize their prey and to assist in digestion.

Graham Millage, the manager of the Australian Museum’s arachnology collection, told the Guardian that it was unusual to hear of a Huntsman spider tackling a mouse. “This is the first time I’ve seen one catch a mouse, but I have seen huntsmen catch geckos. I’ve seen a redback spider catch a snake in its web, I’ve seen a golden orb spiders catch birds.”

The short video quickly circulated around the Internet, and as of today has been viewed over 11 million times. Of the estimated 41,000 comments, most expressed wonder and sometimes horror at the strength of the spider.

In case anyone is wondering about the fate of the rather large spider, have no fears. Wormal has assured everyone that the spider is safe, writing on his Facebook page: “Ok guys so just letting you all know that the spider is fine. We have named him Hermie, we have adopted him and he is now running his own extermination business out of our town Coppabella. Oh and he is now paying rent. Lol.”

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