Residents in Australia are being terrorised by thousands of spiders seeking shelter in their homes after heavy rainfall caused one of the worst floods in 50 years.
People living in New South Wales (NSW) have shared images and videos on social media showing clusters of spiders trying to escape the floodwaters by clinging on to fences and doors.
Melanie Williams from Macksville in NSW filmed thousands of spiders crawling up her garage door.
She told ABC News: “That was enough to really freak me out, I had never seen anything like it before. I am an arachnophobe from way back so I hope they’ve gone back to wherever they came from.
“I occasionally see spiders around the place but never anything like that, it was just insane.”
Matt Lovenfosse snapped thousands of spiders at Kinchela Creek trying to beat the floodwaters and posted the images on Facebook.
He wrote: “All the brown you can see is spiders trying to beat the flood water.”
Matt grew up on the farm and told CNN he experienced similar flooding in March 2001 and March 2013 which resulted in spiders flocking to his home.
He added: “It’s still raining here and the flood water is still rising, the water is getting closer to our home.
“In the morning it should be inside and the spiders will be all over the house.”
Shenea Varley uploaded a video on TikTok showing spiders swarming on a fence as flood waters churned below.
“They will climb up your legs to get shelter as well,” she captioned the clip.
On Monday, NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said that nearly 18,000 people have been evacuated from flood-hit regions in the state.
But he is warning that more evacuations may be needed due to the relentless rain.
“Overnight, unfortunately, some weather conditions have worsened, and those weather conditions are likely to worsen during the day so many communities will experience increasing heavy rainfall,” he said.
Authorities have declared 38 disaster areas in the state and have described the next 24 hours as ‘critical’.
Although the weather is likely to ease on Wednesday residents are being warned they may not be able to return to their homes immediately as incessant rains dump more water in river catchment areas.
Mr Berejiklian said: “Some of you may be wondering why you can’t go back home because it’s a sunny day. It’s because conditions are unsafe for that to occur.”
Neighbouring Queensland was also bracing for heavy showers on Tuesday in the southern parts of the state, with the weather system expected to shift south to parts of Victoria and the island state of Tasmania over the next few days.
The weather bureau said around 10 million people in all states and territories except Western Australia will be affected by the heavy rainfall with NSW and Queensland expected to bear the brunt.