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Old May 12th, 2004, 07:56 AM
Peter Webb
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Default Advice re Katoomba & Spiders!

I had never seen a funnel web spider until we put a swimming pool in our
backyard - now I fish 2 or 3 out of the pool every year. Nor had I ever seen
a snake in the suburbs; I dragged one out of the pool filter box last Xmas
day. Not bad for 12 kms from the centre of Sydney! (Am I making you feel
any better yet?)

As Tony and the others said, you have essentially zero chance of dying from
spider bite. About 2 or 3 people in Sydney are bitten each year (Sydney is
the centre of the funnel-webs range); there have been no deaths at all since
about 1970 when an anti-venene was discovered. I doubt a tourist has ever
been bitten by a funnel web, let alone died from a bite. Redbacks are less
of a concern, as they are not as poisonous - typically only children and the
elderly are at real risk of death if bitten.

Despite the overseas image of Australia as inhabited by spiders, snakes,
sharks, crocodiles, box jellyfish, baby-eating dingos, blue-ringed
octopusses and serial killers (he seemed a nice man, but kept to himself a
lot), Australia would have to be one of the safest countries in the world
for inhabitants and visitors alike.

Chill, and remember to drive on the left when you are here - that really
will kill you a damn site faster than any spider you may find in your

"Kathy Garner" wrote in message
news:%[email protected]
Hi, I've another question. We'd like to visit Katoomba. Could anyone
reccommend a good place
to stay that would range from 120-170 a night for 6 people? Like most
people, we're trying to do
things on the cheap but a lot of the websites for Katoomba list very
expensive accommodation.

Also, my nephew is freaked out about Australian spiders and thinks there
will be one lurking under
each blanket. What is it with the spiders anyhow? They'd be deep in the
bush, right? He thinks we
have to be extra cautious or something. Now he's got my mom worried and
it's getting contagious.
What's the real story? Thanks.

Kathy in BC, Canada