'Spider experts' have been out searching for a tarantula spotted on a footpath in Stevenage.

Illyana Bass was walking on the footpath between Harvey Road and Faraday Road when she spotted a tarantula believed to be a grammostola pulchra - commonly known as a Brazilian black.

Her husband, Matthew, posted a photo of the spider on Facebook, saying he "would guess it's an escaped pet," and explaining that his wife was unable to rescue it as she "is deathly scared of spiders."

Illyana's sighting at around 1.30pm on Wednesday prompted kind-hearted people to go looking for the tarantula, concerned it would not survive long in the cold weather.


One person said: "I looked for her for three hours the other day. I wanted to take her home and get her nice and warm."

Another said: "A few of us went and looked for him/her, including a few spider experts, but sadly the poor thing would have burrowed, because it was so cold and raining, and then perished."

She added that it was "a docile spider who needed help desperately."

Although a Brazilian black possesses urticating hairs, they would much rather flee than attack. Their venom is not as irritating as many other species of tarantulas.