Rumor: Is the Two-Striped Telamonia a New Poisonous Spider in the US?

A long-standing urband legend tells a story of a new poisonous spider in the US, which has been found in airplanes - namely under toilet seats. Is this story true?

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It is a hoax.

This story is known to have been circulated via email for many years, in varying incarnations, recently making the jump to social media such as Twitter and Facebook. There is no evidence that any of these events ever occurred. Further, this spider – which is real – is not considered venomous.

Let’s take a look at the story.


A spider bite…please read………… And you thought the brown recluse was bad!

Three women in North Florida, turned up at hospitals over a 5-day period, all with the same symptoms. Fever, chills, and vomiting, followed by muscular collapse, paralysis, and finally, death. There were no outward signs of trauma.

Autopsy results showed toxicity in the blood. These women did not know each other, and seemed to have nothing in common. It was discovered, however, that they had all visited the same Restaurant (Olive Garden) within days of their deaths. The health department descended on the restaurant, shutting it down. The food, water, and air conditioning were all inspected and tested, to no avail.

The big break came when a waitress at the restaurant was rushed to the hospital with similar symptoms. She told doctors that she had been on vacation, and had only went to the restaurant to pick up her check. She did not eat or drink while she was there, but had used the restroom.

That is when one toxicologist, remembering an article he had read, drove out to the restaurant, went into the restroom, and lifted the toilet seat. Under the seat, out of normal view, was a small spider.

The spider was captured and brought back to the lab, where it was determined to be the Two-Striped Telamonia (Telamonia dimidiata), so named because of its reddened flesh color. This spider’s venom is extremely toxic, but can take several days to take effect. They live in cold, dark, damp climates, and toilet rims provide just the right atmosphere.

Several days later a lawyer from Jacksonville showed up at a hospital emergency room. Before his death, he told the doctor, that he had been away on business, had taken a flight from Indonesia, changing planes in Singapore, before returning home.
He did not visit (Olive Garden), while there. He did, as did all of the other victims, have what was determined to be a puncture wound, on his right buttock.

This image is being circulated with the story in April 2013.

This image is being circulated with the story in April 2013.

Investigators discovered that the flight he was on had originated in India.

The Civilian Aeronautics Board (CAB) ordered an immediate inspection of the toilets of all flights from India, and discovered the Two-Striped Telamonia (Telamonia dimidiata) spider’s nests on 4 different planes! It is now believed that these spiders can be anywhere in the country. So please, before you use a public toilet, lift the seat to check for spiders. It can save your life!

And please pass this on to everyone you care about.

Bottom Line
The Two-Striped Telamonia is more commonly called the Two-Striped Jumper, or Telamonia dimidiata. It can be found in the rain forests and tropical environments of Singapore, Indonesia, Pakistan, India, Bhutan. And, as stated earlier, it is not considered poisonous.

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15 Comments on Rumor: Is the Two-Striped Telamonia a New Poisonous Spider in the US?

  1. James Richter // November 2, 2012 at 9:46 am // Reply

    Despicable to have this HOAX widely Distributed

  2. jorge hernandez // December 13, 2012 at 2:13 am // Reply

    in colombia they are a tasty treat in the jungles….

  3. Oh lordy……….. a huuuge heartfelt thanks to whomever runs this website! I read this on FB and was about to become self-conscious every time I go to the restroom, be it my house or outdoors. Some girl also commented who’d read about this hoax before.

  4. Melinda Fultz // December 16, 2012 at 11:26 am // Reply

    Oh thank god I’m absolutely terrified of spiders and when I read this on Facebook I became extremely paranoid. I was so scared but I no longer have reason to worry!!!!

  5. I just read about this on Facebook and got a huge bump on my butt I’m freaking what do I do I’m losing so much sleep over it I’m scared to die as it is

  6. Decided to Google this spider due to the fact I work in the oilfields and used port a potties (blue rooms) at a lot of wells. I do have other truck drivers out there on the roadway very concerned for them. I will let them know this info just got thank u.

  7. I just want to say thank you for whoever posted this… I read it on Facebook and was extremely scared because I don’t kill spiders. I’m too afraid to so normally I cover them with something and tape them down no matter where they are until my boyfriend gets home. Had I seen a spider after reading this I would have just bolted from my apartment and since I live on Wisconsin its too cold to sit outside for hours. Lol thank you for calming me down.

  8. Oh thank god this story wasn’t true. I’m terrified of spiders and was loosing sleep over this and every time i went to the bathroom i thought of this….. Thank you so much for letting us know its not true. Lisa m.

  9. Omg!! What a relief. Every time me or my baby girl went to the restroom I would lift the toilet lid to check. I was so paranoid for my family especially my son given that he’s in college in Florida and rides planes often.. Thanks so much!! Now I can relax lol!!!!

  10. Whoever invented this hoax is a seriously sick f–k! thanks for letting us know it was a hoax, i can breathe easy now :)

  11. Crazy i tell you… We received the exact mail today, with only difference being, it was not US, it is SA, a local province…. i mean really? change the name of the country but nothing else?

    Totally insane…

    Whatever keeps the heart young i suppose…

  12. are u positive its a hoax? i was at walmart to find window blinds and my sis knocked a spider off my shoulder and it had 2 blue stripes on its back and i’m panicked! please assure me.

  13. Angella Faith // July 7, 2013 at 3:25 am // Reply

    So I’m major hypochrondriac and I have a bump on my leg close to my butt and now I’m freaking out uggh stupid shit

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