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New 'giant' spider has been discovered in Australia

New 'giant' spider has been discovered in Australia

A new 'giant' spider has been discovered in Australia, though it is an endangered species

Whenever you mention Australia, you'll often find that the next line in the conversation will be about all the rather scary creepy crawlies over there.

Some of the infamous creatures you will find Down Under include snakes, the less scary kangaroos, and of course, spiders.

Having a fear of spiders is actually quite common, with a lot of us avoiding them wherever possible.

A study led by Graham Davey of City University London found that from 118 people surveyed, a staggering 75 percent said they have a fear of spiders.

And for those not the biggest fan of the eight-legged critter, any news coming out of Australia is never the best (sorry).

A new spider has been discovered by scientists in Australia, which has been added to the country's long wildlife list.

It looks like a thing of nightmares.
Queensland Museum

Not only that, but the spider has also been described as 'giant' following its formal cataloguing in Queensland.

The new species, which is named Euoplos dignitas, can only be found in the Brigalow Belt in Central Queensland.

The investigation behind the spider was conducted by Queensland Museum scientists, who have described what to look out for.

It is a large trapdoor spider that lives in open woodland habitats and builds its burrows in the black soils of the Central Queensland area.

Its unusual name comes from the Latin dignitas, which means dignity or greatness - reflecting the humongous size of the creature.

The name is also a nod to Queensland Museum's Project DIG, which supported the research project in fieldwork, genetic research and lab work.

But Euoplos dignitas is actually an endangered species, as it has lost most of its natural habitat to land clearing.

"What I really love about the type of work we get to do here at the Queensland Museum," Dr Jeremy Wilson, research assistant of arachnology at Queensland Museum.

The new spider was discovered by Queensland Museum.
Queensland Museum

“You get to come into the collection and look through specimens from across Australia and you just never know what you’re going to find.

“When you then get to see that through to the end, which is giving a name to that species and knowing that that species is now known to everyone and can be protected.”

Meanwhile, the museum's primary arachnologist Dr Michael Rix, added: "The females, which are the larger trapdoor spiders of the two sexes, they're almost five centimetres in body length.

"They've got these really cryptic trapdoors in these woodland habitats on the ground and most people wouldn't even realise that they're there."

Featured Image Credit: Queensland Museum

Topics: Australia, Animals