Thousands of spiders have descended upon Wagga Wagga, Australia, seeking refuge from floodwaters. Eerie spider webs resembling snow drifts were reported around the inland city in New South Wales, where 8,000 residents were recently forced from their homes due to flooding.
Entomology collections manager Graham Milledge of the Australian Museum has said the spiders‘ swarming was known as ballooning, and was typical of what spiders do after being forced to flee from floods. “They often do it as a way of dispersing and getting into a new area,” said Milledge, adding that “in an event like this, they are just trying to escape the floods.”
Owen Seeman, arachnid expert at Queensland Museum claims that “what we’ve seen here is a type of wolf spider – They are trying to hide away (from the waters).”
The general consensus on the matter via Twitter seems to be feeling of arachnophobia:
I’m not scared of spiders but that wagga wagga spider photo made my skin crawl