MonsterQuest episode about Giant Spiders

by Dan Stout

I've caught a couple episodes of the History Channel's MonsterQuest. It's a fun show with a casual, and usually intelligent, overview of various "mysterious creature" stories. They do a good job of preserving the fun and mystery of these tales while not straying completely into theoretical territory.

But somehow I had completely missed out on the episode about Giant Spiders. (I know, crazy, right?)

They mention several classic tales, including a reported 1938  encounter with a J'ba Fofi on a Congolese  road, and the widely-emailed image of a pair of camel spiders from Iraq. These stories are then used as a jumping off point for an investigation of whether giant spiders can be found, and a reality check about the urban legends surrounding camel spiders.

Of course, as I've mentioned previously, there is strong evidence that in order to grow to the kind of monstrous size described in this episode, a spider's physiology would have to be so altered that we would barely recognize it. Still, I can't help but love a good giant spider story.  


by Dan Stout