Escaping spiders are fleeing the floods in Wagga Wagga, New South Wales, Australia, by moving to higher ground and building massive networks of interconnected spiderwebs, raised over sticks and bushes. The spiders have covered entire fields with their webs and the floodwaters show no signs of subsiding. The town has been declared a disaster area.
The town has experienced its highest rainfall, at 188 mm (7.4 inches) in the week from February 27th, which was 40mm higher than the previous record. As a result, 9,000 people have been evacuated. The flood is the worst for Wagga Wagga since 1853. If the rains continue, the flooding will breach the town’s levees.
Flooding is also widespread in Queensland and Victoria, and it’s been reported that the deluge could continue for more than a month.
Millions of spiders are trying to escape. Residents state that swarms of arachnids are crossing the town and will crawl up your legs to try and get away from the water. The whole town looks like it’s covered in silver, reminiscent of snow.
Scientists think that the small brown spiders are harmless and think that they’re wolf spiders, part of the family Lycosidae, which includes about 2,300 species. It’s not possible to determine the exact species since it’s impossible to obtain samples. They might be juvenile wolf spiders.
The spiders have woven their webs in what’s called ballooning, which lets out lengths of silk in the hope that the wind will catch them and carry them to another place.