MYTH: “Granddaddy Longlegs” are the most poisonous “spider” in the world.

I’ve been hearing this bullshit for years and could never understand why this myth was started and why anyone believed it in the first place.  I’ve had people say “No man, really.  These things contain a deadly venom but…uh..it’s teeth are too small to bite you, so you don’t have to worry about it.”  Sounds pretty convenient. Here’s a funny story.  A friend of mine got tired of hearing this bullshit one day and said “Oh, so it’s full of deadly venom, it just can’t get into me because of it’s tiny teeth?” He then grabbed a handful of the “spiders” off the wall and ate them whole and then saying, “There, now shut the fuck up. That’s a triple dose. I’m still alive.” While this was a really funny way to debunk this stupid myth, there are much more sanitary and less disgusting methods of proving this wrong.

First of all, a “granddaddy long-legs” is called a Harvestmen and is not a spider at all.  It is an Arachnid; part of the spider family, but it’s order is actually Opilones. But the main part we want to look at is the myth of the deadly venom bullshit.  So let us start and finish there.

It’s as easy as this: they have no venom in their bodies.  People study these things, and anyone who has studied them or even thought about them logically knows they have no venom and have no use for venom. They are omnivores and mainly eat fruits, dead stuff, fecal matter, and other types of plants, fungi, etc. while only occasionally eating small insects.  If this was in fact the “most deadly spider in the world” why isn’t it out there taking down elephants and shit? Giving an animal a seriously deadly venom, and no way to use it, is a major flaw in evolution and just doesn’t happen.

I’m not going to waste any more time on this stupid myth. You can find this information anywhere if you just take the time to look it up.

Here, just check out Wikipedia.  They have a pretty in depth bio on the Harvestman. Or here for even more information!

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