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Spider shuts down Saarland supermarket
Photo: DPA

Spider shuts down Saarland supermarket

Published: 09 Jul 2011 12:02 GMT+02:00
Updated: 09 Jul 2011 12:02 GMT+02:00

Experts in the western German town of Bexbach are still searching a supermarket for a spider that jumped out of a Colombian fruit crate on Friday. The eight-legged escape artist is thought to be a highly venomous banana spider.

A spokesman for the grocery store told German news agency DAPD that the supermarket remained closed to ensure customer safety.

He said experts were "frantically" working to track down the creature, though there had still been no trace of it.

Staff from the zoo in Neunkirchen are at the scene, and zoo director Norbert Fritsch said the risk is not to be underestimated if the arachnid in question was, indeed, a banana spider.

He said the spider's bites can be life-threatening, even for a healthy adult. Banana spiders can grow to be 13 centimeters in size. The term refers to two genera of spiders, one of which is large but relatively harmless, and another highly venomous species.

The police in Homburg said the spider had been hiding in a case of bananas. It escaped when supermarket employees were unpacking the delivery.

The spider reportedly scurried under a shelf and then disappeared. Pest control specialists were notified, and the store was evacuated.

DAPD/DPA/arp

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

12:31 July 9, 2011 by GolfAlphaYankee
heem! I'm gonna get me some Bananas,,,, big large Bananas ;-)
15:15 July 9, 2011 by Englishted
Bet the supermarket employee had to change their underwear after that,I know I would have too.
17:43 July 9, 2011 by Celeon
It should be easy to spot. The Brazilian wandering spider (aka Banana spider) can become pretty big.

Its venom is indeed dangerous and the main source of deaths among brazilian banana plantation workers. But like all spiders it does not attack humans on purpose but bites in self defense when threatened.
18:03 July 9, 2011 by fritzwiz
One of these spiders was in a stalk of bananas many years ago, when they were shipped on the stalk wrapped in cheese cloth. My father worked in Chicago's wholesale produce market, and when the wrap was removed the spider jumped onto one of the large dogs that were kept as rat chasers and the dog died of the venom.
16:09 July 10, 2011 by FIUMAN
I have been all over South America and people here have no fear of the spiders or other insects. Yes, the Banana spider are big but I have personally never known anyone to have been killed by one and have seen plenty of them. Even if the spider is never caught it will die in the first hard frost in the autumn. Chill out it is just a freakin spider...People fry these things and eat them down here!.
17:30 July 15, 2011 by ritinha
The Germans just get too hysteric about everything. If Brazil would shut down a supermarket every time there is a spider in sight, they would have to keep the shops closed all the time.
23:14 July 15, 2011 by MarshaLynn
Don't go to Germany ! There is a banana spider running loose !!!
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