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i^ewam tim í^el-i^aclz ápider ^
ffWO recent reports locally of people being bitten by Red-Back
spiders prompted me to go on a hunting expedition on my own quarter-acre property. My search revealed the presence of seven of these potential killers.
The Red-Back spider lives an unobtrusive life. He does not spin art extravagant web to reveal his presence. His favourite haunt is inside an old tin lying in the backyard. He will spin a very light web across the in- side of the tin and usually spread himself in the centre of it. Of the spiders found on my property three were discovered in empty tins, one in a crevice Of the founda- tions, one on a bedroom casement window, one in a cardboard carton in the back shed and one in the letter-box. This latter, in- cidentally, is a favourite haunt of the species and a definite danger zone where
children are in the habit of collecting mail.
It is an acknowledged fact today tfiat the bite of the Red-Back spider can cause death, although, apparently it rarely does so.. There is On record the case of an infant dying within six hours of being bitten. Obviously the danger is more acute in the case of children or babies, or adults in run-down condition or indiffer- ent health when the powers of resistance are impaired.
There is no mistaking a member of the species. He has a pol- ished black body, usually less, than one-half inch overall, with a pronounced vicious red streak running down the middle of the backhand extending to the underside.
The usual effects of an attack are acute pain at the site of the bite, followed by headaches, sweating and a general sense of sickness which may persist for several days.
Treatment should be as for snake bite, by incision on either side of the affected area, and by sucking and encouraging the flow of blood. À doctor's advice should be obtained as quickly as
'How many, householders realise that, within easy reach of their children, lurks this sinister little agent of death?- D. J.
^Jkey óaíuted tlie áeryeant-wiajor
J WONDER how many of your readers can remember how,
on the occasion of another Royal visit about 55 years ago, members of a Perth cadet unit gave an "eyes right" salute to a sergeant-major in King's Park? This is how it happened.
We were members of the Perth Boys' School unit of the old "red-coat" cadets of Queen Victoria's reign. We had a be- loved sergeant-major, one München, a fine man, who had 'tried to enlist for the South African war but had been rejected. On the eve of the visit of the Duke and Duchess of Cornwall and York Sergeant-Major München was induced to accept a» temporary position under the Commissioner of Police. We didn't think much of his successor, and when we marched to King's Park on the occasion of the Royal visit we just slumped along anyhow (our beloved München wasn't with us!).
All of a sudden the front rank of "A" company straightened up. Every foot went down bang on to the road with a simul- taneous crash. The files "dressed," shoulders straightened, chins went up, arms swung, and we marched along like veterans. I was in the rear rank of A company and I asked myself
Then we saw our sergeant-major on a police horse, in police uniform. Our company sergeant (a lad like ourselves) called out smartly "A Company, eyes right." We gladly and promptly obeyed. München w*s startled and surprised but his right hand went quickly to his cap peak in acknowledgment and a smile beamed on us. The other companies followed suit and though the n.c.o.'s ran in amongst us to stop »it, the salute went on. A few seconds later we marched past the Royal saluting base, and gave our scheduled salute.
Later, Sergeant-Major München stepped in front of a mov- ing train at Karrakatta and rescued "Bennie" Herman, the last boy of a file, who had stumbled and fallen. He lifted the lad clear and jumped clear himself, just in time.
München bad our love and affection. I wonder how many
-OLD ORIGINAL (West Leederville).