From Iceland — Tarantulas Coming To Laugardalur Zoo

Tarantulas Coming To Laugardalur Zoo

Published April 8, 2020

Sam O'Donnell
Photo by
Wikimedia Commons

The Environmental Agency recently granted the Family Park and Zoo in Laugardalur the right to import tarantulas, RÚV reports. An expert committee that reviewed the zoo’s request says that it is impossible for the giant spiders to exist outdoors in Iceland due to the harsh weather conditions. Tarantulas require a lot of heat and humidity as well as water and food, and therefore they would not survive if they escaped.

The spiders will be used for exhibition and education in the zoo, and possibly for treatment for those who have arachnophobia.

The Environment Agency also approved a request for the importation of four Southern white-faced owls, which will be on display in special housing. The committee said it would also be unlikely the owls could survive in Icelandic nature.

This committee is composed of experts from the Icelandic Institute of Natural History, the University of Agriculture, the Institute of Life and Environmental Sciences at the University of Iceland, the Marine Research Institute, and the joint representative of Forestry and Landscaping.

The Environmental Agency’s license helps to import giant spiders and birds, but more permits are needed before they can be imported, so it will be some time before they come to the zoo. Stay tuned!

As ever, those looking for more information or advice should go to the Icelandic Government’s excellent COVID-19 help page.

Tune into our daily COVID-Cast for a deeper dive into the day’s developments.

Note: Due to the effect the Coronavirus is having on tourism in Iceland, it’s become increasingly difficult for the Grapevine to survive. If you enjoy our content and want to help the Grapevine’s journalists do things like eat and pay rent, please consider joining our High Five Club.

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