Customs authorities at an airport in the Philippines found 119 live tarantulas that were being smuggled after being hidden inside a pair of shoes.
A post from the official Facebook page of the Philippines Bureau of Customs said that authorities discovered the spiders inside a parcel that had been declared as “buty”, a Polish word for shoes, on October 28.
The parcel was reportedly shipped from Poland and was intercepted after authorities scanned it and found suspicious images.
The post included pictures that showed officials examining the live tarantulas hidden inside plastic vials, that were stuffed inside a pair of running shoes.
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According to the post, the seized tarantulas were turned over to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources Wildlife Traffic Monitoring Unit (DENR WTMU) on October 29 for handling and disposal.
Tarantulas are large and hairy spiders that prey on large insects and arthropods like centipedes and millipedes.
Though popular as an exotic pet in the Philippines, the spiders are classified as an endangered wildlife species. Illegal wildlife trade in the Philippines can result in imprisonment for six months.