Rains have inundated local communities since Thursday, but parts of the east coast plunged into crisis on Saturday with a large dam overflow, swelling rivers and causing flash floods.
New South Wales Premier Gladys Prejiklian announced Monday that nearly 18,000 people have been evacuated from flood-affected areas in the state, and locals have taken to social media to show that thousands of animals are on the move, too.
Matt Lovenfosse is posting Facebook updates from his family’s farm in Kinchela Creek, including the photo above.
“All the brown you can see are spiders trying to conquer the flood waters,” he wrote in the caption.
Lovenfosse grew up on the farm and told CNN it experienced similar floods in March 2001 and March 2013. In both cases, the floodwaters pushed the spiders toward the home, which is the property’s highest point.
“It is still raining here, the flood waters are still rising, and the water is approaching our house,” said Lovinvos. “In the morning it should be inside and the spiders will be all over the house.”
However, Lovenfosse plans to stay in his two-story home.
“My family has lived here forever,” he said. “I grew up here and we feel safe here.”
Lovinvos added that spiders are not the only animals seeking refuge from the water.
“The trees are full of snakes,” he said. “If you take the boat over the field they swim towards it in an attempt to get something dry, as is the case with spiders.”
This may sound like nightmares to some, but Lovenfosse is not fazed.
“I grew up here on the farm, so I’ve always been around snakes, spiders and all the other animals so it doesn’t bother me and usually we don’t cross the lanes much but when the flood comes, they have to find somewhere,” he said.
She wrote “Lots of spiders from the flood water,” along with a video clip of hundreds of spiders crawling over what looks like garage doors.
The caption read: “They will climb your legs for shelter, too.”
The wet weather is set to continue, and Berejiklian predicts that more people may be evacuated.
“The situation is evolving and heavy rains will continue, and we are now witnessing the issuance of weather warnings in Illawara and the southern coast,” she said.
She added, “I do not know of any time in the history of our state when we have witnessed these harsh climatic conditions in such rapid succession amid a pandemic.” “These are tough times for New South Wales, but I think we’ve also shown our resilience.”