Only in Australia! Terrifying photo emerges of a ‘monster’ bird-eating spider named Martha guarding a garage
- A massive spider nicknamed ‘Martha’ was photographed at a backyard barbecue
- The giant golden orb spider was found in Buderim on the Sunshine Coast in QLD
- It was estimated to be around 15-17cm big and twice as large as a man’s hand
A photo of a terrifying golden orb spider nicknamed Martha hanging from a web in front of a bushland garage has gone viral online.
The giant golden orb spider was spotted by Patrick Berg as he enjoyed a family barbecue at his sister’s house in Buderim, on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast.
Mr Berg, who took the picture in November 2016, told Daily Mail Australia: ‘I’ve seen some big ones before but not like that. She was an absolute monster.’
‘We were just going to have a barbecue and a couple of beers and I saw it as we pulled up in the driveway and just went “holy dooley”.’
The terrifying giant golden orb spider named Martha found at a suburban home in Queensland
Mr Berg said it was his brother-in-law’s tattooed hand pictured behind the enormous spider.
‘He was holding his hand five to ten centimetres away from it. That was the closest he wanted to get to the beauty.’
Female golden orb spiders are typically larger than the male spiders and can grow to be well over five inches, or 12centimetres, in size.
‘The actual length of the body in the photo was about 7cm and as thick as my thumb. With the leg span the spider was probably 17cm big,’ Mr Berg said.
‘I wasn’t scared, I was amazed and struck by the beauty of it. I think they’re a gorgeous creature.’
Golden orb spiders (pictured above in another Australian backyard) can grow the size of a dinner plate and have been known to eat birds and bats
Large huntsman spiders are also frequently seen around Buderim on the Sunshine Coast. Mr Berg shared the above photo of a huntsman eating an insect on his property
When asked if they did anything about the spider Mr Berg said: ‘We just left it and took some pictures. They don’t live very long and one day she was gone.’
‘They’re quite common, especially in Buderim, there’s some big insects and lots of natural forests and rainforests,’ Mr Berg said.
Golden orb spiders feed on smaller insects and their webs can even trap little birds and bats.
Their venom is highly effective on prey but poses no real threat to humans.
Mr Berg’s friend shared the old photo to Reddit this week, sparking a huge reaction from hundreds of shocked viewers.
‘I have a pic somewhere in the archive with my dad holding his hat directly behind one and it was no joke the same size as it,’ wrote one person.
‘The thought of that just makes my skin crawl,’ added another.
‘I know this species doesn’t typically grow that large, but I’ve seen some yellow bum ones that easily had the leg span of a dinner plate,’ wrote a third.
GOLDEN ORB SPIDERS
Golden orb weaving spiders can vary from yellow to grey in appearance and be identified by their wheel-shaped orb webs that have a golden shine
They can be found throughout Australia in forests and coastal shrub land
The spiders typically reach sizes of 5cm for females and 2.5cm for males
They feed on insects like flies, beetles and moths as well as small birds or bats
Other names include: Northern golden orb weaver, Golden silk orb weaver, Giant wood spider, Banana spider and Nephila spider
Spiders and insects are often spotted crawling out of the nearby rainforests