A MAN claims he was bitten in his sleep by the UK’s most venomous spider.
Sam Boyle, 23, was woken in the night by what he said “felt like a wasp sting” on his finger.
But after the finger ballooned with puss and he felt faint, he now believes it was the bite of a false widow spider.
The species – a cousin of the deadly black widow – has been largely confined to the South East of the UK.
But increased reports of bites have been linked to warmer temperatures which have seen them spread northwards.
And Mr Boyle, from Connah’s Quay, said his symptoms made him sure it was a false widow that bit him.
“When I looked I saw the spider and within around 20 minutes I was laying in my bed in a cold sweat, with sweat literally dripping off my forehead.
“When I awoke the following morning my finger was huge.
“I ignored it for a few days but soon had to go A&E when I could no longer bend my finger and it started oozing.”
After a visit to hospital, Mr Boyle was put on antibiotics and given a sterile cream to extract the venom from his finger.
Symptoms of a bite are similar to being stung by a bee or a wasp and usually only result in a mild effect on humans.
But one man, Ricki Whitmore, from Essex, nearly lost his leg after being bitten by a false widow while working at a school.
The species is thought to have been introduced to the UK over 100 years ago in crates of fruit from the Canary Islands.
According to the Natural History Museum, it has seen a significant increase in numbers over the last 25 years, .
Despite the spider’s venomous nature, though, there have been no reported deaths from its bite in the UK.