New pet keeping rules in the Netherlands

Damian Conway damian at
Thu Jun 20 22:39:59 BST 2013

> According to the NCIS fact sheet I looked up, in 2011 there were deaths
> caused by camels, cats, cattle, dogs, and sheep. As well as the expected
> killers - bees, crocodiles, emus, horses, kangaroos, sharks and snakes. No
> mention of spiders, which I find highly suspicious.

There is actually  a simple explanation.

One of our commonest house spiders is the ominously named "Huntsman".
They are nocturnal and their venom is non-lethal to humans. An adult
Huntsman will usually be 15-20cm/6-8 inches in leg-span, but they
can easily grow up to 30cm/1ft. And they definitely prefer to live
indoors. I would estimate that I unexpectedly encounter one in my house
about every 3-4 weeks. The all-too-common experience of turning on the
light in a dark room only to discover a huge spider on the wall right
next to your hand never ceases to be an exciting one. Hence, many
Huntsman deaths are listed under "heart failure".

Oh, and they *love* traveling by car, as this excellent video demonstrates
( Hence, most of
the remaining Huntsman fatalities are recorded under "traffic accident".



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