Group of jumping spiders attacks people in India

If you were thinking of getting out of bed this morning, go ahead and think again. It seems that — in behavior previously unknown to any kind of arachnid — a group of spiders has been attacking people in India.

A swarm of spiders began attacking people at a recent Hindu festival. The festival, held in a small town called Sadiya in Assam state was celebrating when large numbers of spiders began biting people, and latching on to the person after they had bitten them. Assam does not have any dangerous spiders, so the incident was just unpleasant... until two victims of spider bites died, apparently of the venom.

When consulted, LR Saikia, an ecologist from Dibrugarh University said that the behavior of the spiders, the aggressive jumping and biting of anything that came near, and the fact that many victims described them as large and hairy might indicate that they are a previously unknown species of tarantula.

Officials caution against getting too worried yet. Local treatment for the bites consisted of slitting open the wounds with a razor blade, so the victims might have died from that. It's also possible that the victims were bitten by a venomous snake and the bite was attributed to the spiders. Still, it's an unpleasant thought that the next species to be discovered by science is a venomous, aggressive tarantula that hunts in packs.

Somebody call William Shatner.

Top Image: Luc Viatour

Via Metro UK, and KUNC.