Black widow spider found in bunch of grapes bought at ASDA
Couple find a deadly Black Widow spider in a bunch of grapes they were about to give to their young children.
Hanna Horsley, 28, bought the bunch of grapes from her local Asda in Leamington Spa on Tuesday before her husband Richard, 31, noticed the cobwebs when he began washing the grapes.
Richard was just about to give the grapes to his young children for their desert: Adeline, 1, Elias, 3, and Emilie, 5, when he found the spider nesting among the fruit.
He said: “I pulled off the packaging to start washing the grapes and had to fend off the kids to start with – they just wanted to grab the grapes and eat them.
“When I put my hand in to pull some grapes out I noticed movement and then saw a load of cobwebs.
“The next thing I knew, I saw a little black spider with weird red markings. I knew straight away it wasn’t a good sign so I ran outside with the packet, threw it in the wheelie bin and sealed the bin with gaffa tape.”
After posting a picture on Facebook, Richard and Hanna suspected the spider was a deadly Black Widow so they called the police.
The police then contacted Geoff Grewcock, an expert at Nuneaton & Warwickshire Wildlife Sanctuary.
Geoff said: “I was contacted by the police at about 7pm on Tuesday about the grapes and initially just thought it was a lot of fuss over nothing.
“When I got there, I saw that Richard had thrown the packet in the bin and gaffa taped it shut.
“As soon as I looked I knew it was a black widow. They’re very lucky the spider was still in the packet.
“We safely retrieved the spider and took it back to our sanctuary. On Wednesday morning, we found that the Black Widow had given birth overnight so Richard and Hanna really are very lucky!”
The grapes had come from Mexico but Black Widows can be found in various different countries all over the world.
Richard said: “Had it bitten any of the children it could have been fatal for them.
“We usually just give the children a whole bunch of grapes to eat from so if that was the case this time it could have been a very different situation.
“Grape packets have little air-holes in so it could have crawled out and bitten one of the kids when we were in the car – it’s a horrifying thought!
“If it had been just a normal spider fair enough but this is a different story.”
An Asda spokesperson said in a statement: “We are in contact with the customer and would like to reassure all our customers that these types of incidents are extremely rare and that we have robust processes in place for identifying pests, including spiders.
“All our grapes are fumigated and cold stored but very occasionally a spider hangs around.”