Showing posts with label bite. Show all posts
Showing posts with label bite. Show all posts

Australia's Redback Spider

One of Australia's best-lmown spiders is the Redback Spider Latrodectus hasseltii, a close relative of America's Black Widow Spider.  It is easily identified by the wonderfully striking orange/red slash on its glossy black (sometimes brown) body.  The Redback Spider was immortalised in Slim Newton’s 1972 hit song Redback on the Toilet Seat:
                   There was a Redbnck on the toilet seat
                       When I was there last night,
                       I didn't see him in the dark but boy
                       I felt his bite.
It Probably wasn't a male spider that bit the man in the toilet. Only the female that bites. A male redback is only about a tenth of the female's size.  He has fangs but they usually can't penetrate human skin.
Redback spider
Redbacks spin their webs in dry sheltered areas under rocks or logs. They also frequent human places - under eaves, floorboards, garden sheds, in junk piles, gardens and the outdoor dunny!  Their webs are spun from spider silk, which is amazing stuff.  It comes from glands in the spider’s abdomen.  Different glands create different silks for varying purposes. Silk can be used for building a web delivering sperm, holding eggs in a sac, lining burrows and catching prey in sticky nets or single threads. You can recognize a redback”s web because it is tangled and rnessy, not a beautiful work of art like the orb weaver’s.

Hundreds of redback bites are reported each year. A Redback Spider bite can be very painful and a victim may also sweat, become weak, feel sick and vomit. The best thing to do is put an icepack on the bitten area and get the person to hospital for treatment.   Someone should try to collect the spider to be sure of its type.  

Thankfully, today there is antivenom that can be injected into the victim to treat the bite.  There have been no deaths from redback spider bites since the antivenom has been available.To make spider antivenom, first you need to get venom from the spider. For redbacks this means dissecting (cutting open) the glands and tissues of the spider. The purified venom is then injected into horses, in small but gradually increasing doses.  The horse produces antibodies to fight the venom. These are taken from the horse using a needle so the life-saving antivenom can be made.

Spiders are arthropods. They have an exoskeleton, an outer skeleton.  They moult and shed their outer skeleton as they grow, replacing it with a new, larger exoskeleton.  Most spiders are nocturnal, being active at night.  Silk line can be as thin as 0.004 millimetres.  Some spiders create silk to cast lures while others use silk to help build a cover for their home's entrance. and others use silk to travel on the wind. Net casting spiders make a small web, a net, which they stretch out to catch their prey.   Jumping spiders stand and jump on their prey. 
 Australiana by Ty Buchanan 
 Australian Blog
            Australian Blog   Adventure Australia
ustraliana culture redback spider mael femlale bit venom antivenom sting inject horses blood ill sweat cure articles news politics economics society anthropology historiography history sociology people nations country asia europe africa u.s. south america central Mediterranean eastern western interesting funny technology free news

Dog, Be Very Afraid

"You should be afraid - very afraid!"
Funny Animal Pictures
Australian Blog
 Adventure Australia
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
vicious dog fierce mad fear teeth bite frightening biting ears mutt

Bedbugs Victorious Over Humanity

Bedbugs are the bane of humanity. Not only do they bite, but people are ashamed to say they suffer from the insects presence. Yet this is normal for any animal, and humans are no different from other creatures.
bedbugs humans live alongside coexist
Note how her face is obscured because of the shame
Humans like to think that they are special and are somehow unique in nature. We evolved like other species alongside bugs who did well out of it. Indeed, humans even benefited while some bugs eat others. There are many of them: bedbugs, fleas, lice, ticks, scabies and so on.

We have tried and failed to eradicate bedbugs. Humans must accept their presence. Dead bedbugs are found on the earliest mummies. Ancient Romans and Greeks wrote about them. Everything has been tried against them from dangerous chemicals to plants and potions. Even smoke has been tried to no avail.

The only thing that worked was DDT. An entire generation enjoyed life for the first time without bedbugs. This was not to last, however, as the dangers of the toxic substance became known. Furthermore, resistant bugs survived and became the hardy bunch breeding today. So prominent have they become that 2010 was named the Year of the Bedbug.
Chemistry by Ty Buchanan 

            Australian Blog   Adventure Australia
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
bedbugs humans coexist live  alongside evolved evolution people animal nature

Stopping the Spread of the Complex Red Fire Ant

Australia is fighting against the spread of red fire ants. This pest has invaded other countries such as the US. Nothing seems to work to stop their malicious takeover. They give a nasty bite. It was thought to be a simple kind of ant but studies have shown it to be a complex creature.

It has two distinct variants in its social structure. Normally colonies keep their distance. On the other hand, many colonies do form a supercolony where queens work together and breed in safety. Ants of the supercolony do kill queens of isolated colonies.

The ants are different genetically. Queens of individual colonies are fatter. This is to feed the first larvae when they start the colony. Queens who work together never need the "boost" fat. The change of a single gene dramatically changes physicality and behavior. It is contentious as to whether there will be an evolutionary winner. We just do not know at this stage.

It is hoped that chemicals producing violent behavior can be identified and used against the pest. Could this be interfering in the evolution of a species? Of course it is. We have been selecting for preferential genes in many animals and plants for thousands of years.
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Dog Bite

"Grrrrr..........  Go on.  Just try me."
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Funny Animal Photos

Donkey Attack

People have much affection for the humble donkey. It is seen as being quiet and friendlier than the horse.  Donkeys do, however, kick and bite when they are made to do something they don't want to do, or are prodded and poked unnecessarily.

A Swedish lady kept a donkey with her horse. She thought it would make the horse happier and quieter. One day she separated the donkey from the horse. It became violent biting the lady's thumb. Furthermore, its teeth latched on firmly. She could not get it free the animal's mouth. Help arrived and a crowbar was used to pry the thumb away from the vicious bite.

The owner was taken to the nearest hospital and they found no breaks in her bones. She was bandaged, given a tetanus injection and taken home. A week late puss was oozing from the wound - she had not been given antibiotics. A sample taken from her hand showed the presence of Staphylococcus hyicus. This is common is the mouths of horses, but was not known to cause infection in humans.

The experience left the woman with a permanently numb area at the tip of her thumb. When you next feel like patting an animal that appears to be mild and friendly, just of think of the pain endured with the damaged thumb.
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Cat and Mouse

"Do you want this mouse master, or shall I take it outside?"
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Funny Animal Photos

Tyrannosaurus rex Had a Tremendous Bite

Knowledge about ancient animals is going in leaps and bounds. Every month or so something new is discovered. Tyrannosaurus rex, for example, had a bite far stronger than imagined previously. The "Terminator" pig-like Archaeotherium was assumed to have the strongest bite of all. This view has now changed.

Tyrannosaurus rex was no wimp. It could take chunks of meat out of living victims. In-depth research was done on the head of the ancient beast. A computer simulation with skeleton and muscles showed a tremendous bite of 1350 kilograms of force. This was at the back of the mouth where the bite was strongest.

To put this into perspective, modern crocodiles and alligators have a bite of about 1,200 kilogram. The shark is feared, but it has a bite of only 300 kilograms. Dinosaurs were really frightening animals when all animals were very large. Man would have been out of place in such an environment. With animals having tremendous biting power humans would not have survived for long.
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .