Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Redbacks and brown snakes and crocs, oh crap.

I was going through posts on my Australia blog today, and I came across one that I wrote after being there for a week. I was cracking up reading it, because I seriously was SO FREAKED OUT by the animal “situation” they have in Australia. I thought you guys may like it.

(Dated September 3, 2010)

 

Last night my father-in-law yells, “hey Hed, there’s a gecko in the bathroom, come look at it!” I slowly walk in and he points to the window. “See it, it’s just right there!” and I go, “huh? Where?” and get closer until I see this tiny little lizard camouflaged into the background. I yell for J to get my camera, and laugh like a mad scientist at the size of this animal. His body must be comprised of 92% lungs. Their call is LOUD. When I went to bed last night and heard their mating cry, I mocked them as I fell fast asleep.

I got a comment from a friend who lives in Brisbane that read, “Geckos? Nah they're cute. It's the redback spiders you need to be wary of.” Huh? Didn’t Steve Irwin teach us that all scary deadly Aussie animals live in the Outback? I don’t live in the Outback! So, of course, I Wiki “Redback spider”, and am happy to see that it’s just a sister to the ever-present Black Widow spider in California. No harm, no foul. I reply, “oh! we have those! I’m not TOO worried about those little guys :)”, to which he replies, “Ah yeah the funnel webs will get ya too. Literally... They move really fast so don't go near a nest if you see one :)” DAMN IT!!! WHAT THE HELL IS A FUNNEL WEB SPIDER?!!?! I go back on Wiki and look up “Funnel-web spider”. Wiki reads, “Funnel-webs are one of the three most dangerous spiders in the world and are regarded by some to be the most dangerous.” Oh, Jesus. Now I’m looking under the toilet seat when I pee, turning on the light to walk down a hall, wearing shoes in the house, lifting up the pillows before I go to bed…now one irrational gecko fear is conquered, I have to now be afraid of SPIDERS??

If I ever see one of these I’m going to poop myself. 

Casually I ask my mum about snakes. I remember last summer Jasper, the Jack Russell Terrier, got bit by a snake and was near death. She tells me, “ah, you only see brown snakes in the summertime, and you kind of just know when they’re about”. You do? You have a snake sixth sense? I don’t think I have that. Is it learned? Can you teach me BEFORE SUMMER??? But alas, “Brown Snake” isn’t deadly or dangerous sounding, right? I think of “Kill Bill” and their Deadly Viper Assassination Squad: Black Mamba, Sidewinder, Cottonmouth, etc. No one was named “Brown Snake”. That would sound gay. (Poor Mr. Pink in “Reservoir Dogs”, but that’s another movie altogether.) For my own knowledge, I Wiki “Brown Snake”. BAD IDEA. The second sentence states, “It is one of the world's deadliest snakes. This, combined with a native habitat which includes the well-populated east coast of Australia, has resulted in fatalities.” DAMN IT!!! Does it make a warning sound like a Rattlesnake? No! Will they strike only when in danger? No! Do they live far away from farms and houses? NO!!! WHAT THE HELL, MAN! Now I can’t walk outside, I’m keeping all the doors and windows shut, taping my pants to my leg so nothing can slither in as I sleep! (No, not really. But I might.)

Silent AND deadly? Grr!220px-Eastern_Brown_Snake_-_Kempsey_NSW

The only decent ending to this story is that I live nowhere near water. Crocodiles and alligators and jellyfish and stingrays, UP YOURS!!!

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17 comments:

  1. Spiders and snakes are why I couldn't live down under.

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  2. I've watched a bunch of documentaries and remember seeing one on the mamba's and the brown snake in Australia. Scary as hell. All I could think is I'd never let a kid go out of the house ever! And then I see sweet lovable Mynx with that damn snake around her neck in the picture and it creeps me out. I'm with you Hed. No Way!

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  3. and that is why i try not to google anything.

    i am not afraid of stuff i know nothing about...

    kinda like pulling the covers over your head when you were afraid of noises as a little kid...

    well i did, and i am still here now!

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  4. I don't like spider and snakes, or alligators,or crocodiles. Have no problems with jellyfish or geckos. But the thing I hate the most are PRAYING MANTISES. Once ran out of the bathroom with my pants at my ankles because there was a PRAYING MANTIS in the bathroom, only tho find my father standing outside the door. lol

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  5. I have a cat. He would never let any disgusting/dangerous creature get close to me. *looks around triumphantly* :P :P
    But seriously, spiders I can take.. Snakes, on the other hand will have me looking over my shoulder for months. *shudder*
    Stay alive, Hed... :)

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  6. Yeah, that'd be just bad. BTW...made you new blog of the day.

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  7. Love love love geckos, in fact if i can ever find someone who can draw them I am making it my button.
    We get red backs around here but the are very easily dispatched. Happily funnel webs live on the east coast.
    Can I just say that in my entire life in Australia, I am yet to be eaten by shark, crocodile or snake. No Jelly fish stings and I havent yet died from spider bite.
    I have however been bitten by a possum. And my kid had a lizard poop on him.

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  8. i'm ok with the spider but Hell No to the snake so do not like them

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  9. I love the lizards...and the snakes! Spiders...NO EFFIN WAY! No crocs or gators for me either! Funny, I had a dream the other day that an alligator was chasing my son through our yard...No more naps for me! They always result in crazy-weird dreams...So nope! I've been warned about all the bugs and critters I'm gonna possibly see here in our new home, but so far I've only seen a small lizard and he was quite friendly. I've been told that there's a black snake living under our back porch, and although I've been handling wild snakes all my life (only been bit once...by a "blue racer"), I don't think I'll be picking him up anytime soon. Just not feeling brave enough for that...he's BIG!
    My post yesterday was about our little lizard friend. Glad I found your sweet blog!(through Mynx :)

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  10. Yeah, seriously FUCK snakes. I don't mind spiders actually. I dospose of them without killing them because I find them fascinating. Snakes however, I will kill on contact. Great, you just reminded me that it's almost summer time and here in AZ that means rattlesnakes. TIme to sharpen my machete.

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  11. None of those things really bother me in particular.....as long as I know exactly where they are. And they don't move faster than me. And they stay out of my bed. And they don't try to eat me. Crocodiles are the best.....with BBQ sauce.

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  12. HEY, YOU'RE THE NEW BLOG OF THE DAY!!!

    and seriously, just looking at those pictures gave me the wiggins. ugh.

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  13. ooh didnt know australia had all these creepy crawlies. i used to see gecko's all the time back home in Nigeria though :p

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  14. OT-In the time I was there, I didn't see either (except for like, a daddy longlegs). That didn't stop me from looking EVERYWHERE!!!

    Barb-They are so nonchalant about it. I guess it
    s because they grew up around it and it's normal for them, you know?

    Bruce-A little out of sight, out of mind, eh? I don't look up roaches. I don't want to know anything about them (I read once that they can live seven days without their HEAD and that scarred me for life)!

    BA-I honestly don't think I've ever seen a praying mantis! But they look creepy-I'm with you!

    PencilGirl-LOL @ "Stay alive, Hed"!

    Copyboy-YAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAY!

    Mynx-Australians have balls of steel. J is just like you, it doesn't phase him!

    Becca-Same...except the spiders in Australia are sometimes bigger than the snakes!!!

    Mama-Welcome! The geckos creeped me out because they were IN THE HOUSE. ON THE CEILING! I kept thinking "what if one falls on me in the middle of the night?!?!?!"

    Rafa-You know, snakes don't bother me on the whole. Deadly killer snakes and spiders the size of my head kind of do. A lot!

    SF-J has eaten kangaroo, so I don't know if your "eating crocodile" is sarcasm or if you really have! Crazy Irish people probably DO eat crocodiles. Just sayin' :)

    Kage-I KNOW! YAY!

    Kitkat-Ooh, I want to know about Nigeria now! Do you have a thick accent?

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  15. I will be honest. I only read the very beginning of this post because the snakes and spiders freak me out way too much already. I don't wiki ANYTHING. I am too scared. I already have nightmares about what makes that weird sound in the bushes when I am walking into town and whether or not spiders are going to eat me while I am sleeping.

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  16. Brooke-I'm a knowledge is power kinda gal, but yeah...now I'm afraid of pretty much everything. Ignorance is bliss!

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  17. Wow I think I'd be just as freaked out if I were you Hed so don't feel bad haha.

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