Spider in school, snake in bin

A funnel web spider meets an eastern brown snake. Both were found in Lennox Head within hours of each other.
A funnel web spider meets an eastern brown snake. Both were found in Lennox Head within hours of each other. Cathy Adams

A DEADLY funnelweb spider was found on the grounds of Lennox Head Public School on Tuesday night, sparking concerns for the safety of students.

Many local children would never have seen a funnelweb before, according to security worker Jason Straton, who found the creature while working the night shift.

“I went to check the doors at the public library and found it there,” he said.

“The next day I went and showed the school principal, just so the school knew to be on the look out for these spiders.

“I also took it around to the classes to show the kids. They call me ‘Spider-man’ now.

“It’s pretty unusual for funnelwebs to be up in this area.

“There’s a bit of construction work going on at the school and some of the materials have come up from Sydney, so I reckon that’s probably where it came from.

“This one I found was a female, and she wasn’t fully grown yet.

“But funnelwebs are the second-most venomous spiders in the world.”

Mr Straton said funnelweb spiders were ‘very aggressive’ and had the potential to kill a human.

However, there have been no deaths recorded in Australia since an antivenene was developed in 1980.

Mr Straton said if you were bitten by one, you should get to get to a hospital within an hour-and-a-half.

“That was part of my concern with this spider being on school grounds – we’re not exactly close to a hospital in Lennox Head,” he said.

“You would need to go to Lismore Base Hospital for the antivenene.”

But Mr Straton’s funnelweb discovery wasn’t the last of his encounters with dangerous animals for the day.

When he finished his shift, he found a one-metre long brown snake under a neighbour’s bin.

“I found it right after I got back from the school,” he said.

“With all the rain we’ve had, the snakes will be coming out to look for food.

“And it’s the same with the funnelwebs.

“I was talking to another guy in Lennox Head and he said he found a couple of funnelwebs about the same size in his garden.

“There could be a few around the place at the moment, and they’re probably going to start breeding.”

Mr Straton said he would release the snake into nearby bushland.

“I think I’m going to have to kill the spider, even though I don’t really want to have to do that,” he said.

Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

RVC set to disperse vulnerable flying foxes

Flying foxes head out in search of flowers and nectar.

Bats "running riot and ruining our lifestyle" says Gulaptis

Police set to break up Northern Rivers logging protest

Githabul elders are protesting over logging set to start in the Donaldson State Forest near Woodenbong. Photo: contributed

A logging protest on the Northern Rivers has attracted police.

GALLERY: Beef Week babes grace the fashion catwalk

THE Northern Star is a proud sponsor of the Casino Beef Week Fashion Parade and this year's 2016 event held at the Casino RSM was a sold out success. Local businesses and community came together to showcase fashion, music and entertainment. Up and coming fashion designers along with Casino fashion houses featured a wide range of winter clothing and accessories modelled by locals with professional hair and makeup artists adding to the glamour of the night. Performances by the talented young dancers and singers ensured the 600 guests revelled in community spirit and fashionable fun.

The lingerie section wasn't quite what the guys had in mind

Latest deals and offers

Coastal development keeps young people on Northern Rivers

Wes Bale is a 27-year-old born and bred Lennox Head local who is an example of the demographic shift in the region.

Young Northern Rivers residents are looking closer to home

We’ve found 8 rentals available on the Northern Rivers

2/22 Sunnybank Drive, Ballina

It's obvious there is a rental shortage on the Northern Rivers