A British couple found bananas they purchased from Tesco to be infested with spiders. The Bristol Post reported that the couple believed the spiders to be Brazilian wandering spiders. The bite of Brazilian wandering spiders can cause a host of unpleasant symptoms including hours-long painful erections and death.
"I recognized the spiders because I remembered seeing a news story about them, so when I saw the cocoon it rang a bell and I thought I should check it, so I Googled it,” said Maria Layton of Bristol. However, there has been no confirmed identification by an expert. Layton became even more concerned after the cocoon began to “unfurl.” She shoved the bananas into a sealed box, which she put in the freezer to kill any spiders that might hatch.
In response to her Facebook message, a Tesco representative instructed Layton to provide the company with more information including the barcode, the date and location where the fruit was purchased. Layton appeared to want someone from the company to come to her house to deal with her problem.
“I’m more concerned about this being in my house and the wrapper being in the bin,” she replied. Tesco did provide Layton with help handling her pest situation.
The Brazilian Wandering Spider or Phoneutria fera is an aggressive and highly venomous spider. First discovered in Brazil, this spider is known to exist elsewhere in South and Central America. The Brazilian Wandering spider is a member of the Ctenidae family of wandering spiders. It appeared in the Guinness Book of World Records 2007 for being the most venomous animal alive. Capable of growing into a leg span of up to 4 - 5 inches, they are large, hairy and spindly-looking spiders with eight eyes, two of which are very large. They move quickly as their legs are strong and spiny. They have distinctive red jaws which they display when angered.
The Brazilian wandering spider is not a Tarantula. Tarantulas are harmless to humans and are mostly ambush killers who wait for prey to come to them. Brazilian wandering spiders are active hunters. Brazilian wandering spiders and Tarantulas do have one thing in common. They do not eat bananas.