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Author Topic: spider deterrents  (Read 7248 times)

Offline chester

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« on: 19/08/2009 10:03:18 »
[V] [:(!]

Hi all,

I live in Adelaide, South Australia, and I hope you will accept me as a new login member.

I have a thing about spiders.  I now hate them, and must get rid of them.

Found out about lemon oil mixed with quart of water in a trigger nozzle can, as spiders hate lemon oil, and various essential oils, such as eucalyptus, lemon myrtle, citronella, go to spiderzrule.com/repel.htm to see other natural spider deterrents.


Reason being, that Xmas last year, I lost my best friend, Amba, my cat, who was everything to me, we did everything together, even walked around the block, he thought he was a dog.

I was out that day when Amba got bitten by red back spiders, females, very nasty ones.

My partner got home before I did to see Amba staggering towards him as he lifted up the roller door, he was convulsing, paralysed and couldn't stand up, he was frothing at the mouth, he was dehydrated.  It was similar to brown snake bite.

The vet couldn't do anymore, and when I got there, I was all numb.  It was the same grief as when my father passed over, couldn't eat, sleep, or do anything for months. 

Amba died overnight at the vet surgery, and I did say goodbye before I left, I was not myself as we drove home, knowing he did not want to die all by himself in a cage in the vets surgery, with no one around.  I am still angry about that, with the vet, with myself.

I blame myself for letting him out to sunbake that morning, and not even asking myself, that possibly something might happen, a bite of some sort.  I spent hundreds of dollars landscaping my new public housing courtyard, the first real home I ever had.  So I pulled out all my super when I had a job, my savings, and began planting native trees, mulching up the sandpit I had, and hoped I made my cats a very comfortable and safe garden to enjoy playing and relaxing in., only to find Amba had to be taken, so that the other 3 cats could survive, even myself, as I used to do things without gloves.

My other 3 cats, Moxie, Chester, Exotic persians, 2 years old, and Britney, the chocolate British kitten, 3yo. all love eachother.  Since Amba died for us, I hired 2 pest controllers to spray all over the garden, mulch and courtyard, as red backs were nesting under the ground, under the mulch, weaving webs, under and ontop pots, under eaves, under and inside the fence, you name it, I had nests of venomous spiders.

It was a nightmare, and still is, knowing Spring is now here and the global warming made our winter here very dry, and hardly any rain, and now the spiders, and other nasties such as brown snakes will now start producing.

Here in Australia, as you know, Steve Urwin, died a terrible death, for the passion he loved most, and our pets are all at risk as a humans.  WE fear swimming in the sea because it is shark's territory, so why go into their domain?  We fear our gardens, spiders, snakes. 

I hate living here, and hate the nasty things that take our innocent pet's lives.

I am still grieving for Amba, and because I loved him so much and when I gave him his massage I would always say that if something happened to him I would die with him.

I cursed Amba by loving him like my own child, he was my everything, and now I don't have him to lead me up the stairs to bed, as he watched to see if I was okay and would not fall.
He was my hero, he wasn't a real cat, he was a human, and will never be replaced.

The other 3 cats are exotics, very special, and they miss him leading them to breakfast and doing all the playing and grooming and sleeping together, and sunbathing in the sun.

Such is life, life is cruel, and life is without remorse, Michael Jackson is also an innocent soul, tortured and still tortured by the media, and those cruel people who never stood by his innocence.

Regards,

Lana Hill
Australia ::) ;) [|)] [V] [^] [O8)] ???
« Last Edit: 19/08/2009 10:09:45 by chester »


 

Offline JnA

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« Reply #1 on: 19/08/2009 11:14:32 »
I'm sorry your cat died...

but not much of your post makes any real sense.. I hope you can find peace soon and move forward.
 

Offline graham.d

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« Reply #2 on: 19/08/2009 13:04:05 »
I think it is still a mystery why so many creatures in Australia have such an overkill capability when it comes to venom. You would think that they would have evolved so that they had just enough to deter or disable their main predators or disable/kill their prey. But no; it seems many, even quite tiny, creatures have enough potency in their venom to kill elephants. My guess is there is a reason why this has happened. Any theories?

I'm sorry to read about your cat, Lana. I would guess that there must be experts there who have a good understanding of how to deter spiders. I do feel fortunate that in the UK there are no seriously venomous creatures, with the exception of the adder, although you have to be really unlucky to get bitten by one of these.
 

Offline Nizzle

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« Reply #3 on: 19/08/2009 14:07:20 »
Venom is supposed to be lethal.
I don't see a reason why "overkill" venom should evolve to less potent venom...

And the reason Australian venomous animals have overkill capability is purely coincidental imho. Venom production evolved in animals all across the globe. Some more potent than others. And the common ancestors in Australia were the 'lucky' ones with very potent venom.

The question is now, did the British knew this when they sent all their convicts down under? Aha!
 

Offline graham.d

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« Reply #4 on: 19/08/2009 16:32:06 »
I would suppose that it would be exceptionally "lucky" to suddenly develop (by genetic mutation) the capability to deliver a very potent venom. There would be no special reason (at least that we know of - which is my point) why a very potent venom would give the organism involved any greater survival ability than one that was just sufficient to do the job it needed to do. I would also guess that being able to "manage" these very potent venoms may come at some cost so could even be disadvantageous to the organism in some way.
 

Offline LeeE

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« Reply #5 on: 20/08/2009 02:35:54 »
I think graham.d has an interesting point.

Super-potent venoms are relatively common in marine environments, where they're likely to be diluted by the water, but don't make much sense where there's no need for them.

These super-venoms though, must confer some sort of advantage to the animals because otherwise they wouldn't have been inherited and become ubiquitous throughout the species.  If the species has some degree of tolerance to its own venom then you could see how this might bring a breeding advantage to individuals with stronger venom, but it doesn't explain how many different species could end up with super-venom.  If super-venoms are present in many species in a specific location, but there doesn't currently seem to be a need for them, it sort of suggests that they evolved to deal with a threat that no longer exists, perhaps because of the super-venoms.
 

Offline Nizzle

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« Reply #6 on: 20/08/2009 05:37:56 »
There would be no special reason (at least that we know of - which is my point) why a very potent venom would give the organism involved any greater survival ability than one that was just sufficient to do the job it needed to do.

But let's not forgot that both a regular venom and a super-venom are just synthesized molecules.
It's not like super-venom evolved from regular venom.. It's just another molecule and thus another synthesis and thus a whole other evolution of enzymes.
An evolutionary advantage of super-venom can be that the predator of the venom-producing species does not have the time to kill the prey after being poisoned in comparison with being poisoned by regular venom
 

Offline graham.d

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« Reply #7 on: 20/08/2009 10:17:12 »

An evolutionary advantage of super-venom can be that the predator of the venom-producing species does not have the time to kill the prey after being poisoned in comparison with being poisoned by regular venom

That may be a good reason though actually some of the venoms are highly lethal but not necessarily immediate. I'm not saying there is any magic here, but merely that the whole picture is not fully understood from an evolutionary position. And why does Australia have such a high number of such lethal creatures. It is as though there was some sort of isolated venom-based arms race at some point in its prehistory.
 

Offline LeeE

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« Reply #8 on: 20/08/2009 15:33:06 »
... It is as though there was some sort of isolated venom-based arms race at some point in its prehistory.

Yup - that's the interesting thing.
 

Offline AllenG

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« Reply #9 on: 20/08/2009 18:27:05 »
It's my understanding that "over-kill" venoms arise when the venomous predator and a specific prey have a long term natural selection influence on one another and co-evolve.
For example the rough-skinned newt (Taricha granulosa) and the common garter snake (Thamnophis sirtalis) in North America.

Quote
Garter snake and Rough-skinned newt

Coevolution can occur between predator and prey species as in the case of the Rough-skinned Newt (Taricha granulosa) and the common garter snake (Thamnophis sirtalis). In this case, the newts produce a potent nerve toxin that concentrates in their skin. Garter snakes have evolved resistance to this toxin through a set of genetic mutations, and prey upon the newts. The relationship between these animals has resulted in an evolutionary arms race that has driven toxin levels in the newt to extreme levels
source

The venom becomes more toxic as its recipients become more resistant. I would expect that the super venomous predators in Australia have only one species as their primary prey, and that they and that prey have been coevolving for some time.
« Last Edit: 21/08/2009 22:07:35 by AllenG »
 

Offline chris

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« Reply #10 on: 20/08/2009 20:02:14 »
Contrary to popular belief, most "venom" actually comprises a mixture of many tens (or even hundreds) of different proteins; not all of them are equivalently toxic to all species but by using a range of proteins that hit different targets with different dynamics the venomous animal reduces the risk of prey species out-evolving its ability to hit them. However, evolution is the very reason that they have this diverse range of proteins in the first place - because they have adapted to a moving target.

Chris
 

Offline graham.d

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« Reply #11 on: 21/08/2009 10:12:03 »
That is interesting AllenG and Chris. Do you think that in the case of Australia that the "arms races" were eventually won leaving some creatures with remarkably powerful sets of toxins but where their enemy (predator or prey) is now extinct? 
 

Offline LeeE

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« Reply #12 on: 21/08/2009 15:28:39 »
That is interesting AllenG and Chris. Do you think that in the case of Australia that the "arms races" were eventually won leaving some creatures with remarkably powerful sets of toxins but where their enemy (predator or prey) is now extinct? 

This was what I was wondering too.
 

Offline AllenG

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« Reply #13 on: 21/08/2009 22:08:04 »
I would think that is possible.
« Last Edit: 21/08/2009 22:12:10 by AllenG »
 

Offline chester

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« Reply #14 on: 23/08/2009 12:13:49 »
To Allen G, Chris, Nizzle, Graham D, Lee E,

Thanks Scientists for replying to my venomous spider story.

Although I was writing about many things and kind of convoluted, the main topic was, "why did Amba, my cat have to get bitten by such a tiny thing, like a spider"?

The fact that I did not have my camera on that day, when I was out, and the fact that I could not establish if Amba provoked 'a' red back spider, a nasty female, by rolling in a nest of spiders in the dirt; or if Amba simply sat on a spider and got bitten without knowing it.

These things all puzzle me, as I could not afford a toxicology report.

The fact that the vet ruled out a brown snake bite, as the symptoms were slightly different did not make matters easier, to say the least.

The fact that, many months down the track, I spray constantly with special spray, where spiders still lurk, the good spiders, the types which eat the bad spiders, are now under threat of my spraying because we do need spiders in the environment to take care of other insects.  The ecology of nature is weird, and the way I treat spiders now, is with extreme caution, since my pet has died. As I said before, my other cat got bitten by a brown snake, and if I compared the two deaths, the symptoms of both cats, I could not tell you how numbing if was for me and my friend to watch the toxins take over their entire body, the name of this escapes me for a second.

I thank you all for your scientific approach on the subject of venom and I have learnt so much now about Supervenom and wish to know more about venom and its evolution through the species.  Keep me posted on this subject.

I am also eager to learn how I can make my courtyard Housing Authority garden safe for my 3 other exotic breed cats.  I am planning to sow grass and bag up the mulch.  The mulch ended up giving my cats a skin fungal condition, and this cost me lots of money to fix at the vets.

The other reason I plan to sow grass is that perhaps in the warmer season the spiders will not be able to hide in it as much as they do in mulch or shaded areas or leaves etc.

I will calm down about the spider issue, but for now, I will remain vigilant and as vigilant as can be.

Thank you to all the British and American scientists, you have a world of knowledge, and I wish I could be on your par with comparing statistics from the 'Venom, down Under'- Arms Race, Australia.

Regards

Lana Hill, and the cats (they appreciate your advice too)
Chester, Moxie and Britney, minus Amba
 

Offline Nizzle

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« Reply #15 on: 24/08/2009 10:35:23 »
"why did Amba, my cat have to get bitten by such a tiny thing, like a spider"?

Maybe she ate a venomous spider?
 

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« Reply #15 on: 24/08/2009 10:35:23 »

 

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