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Man Dies From Spider Bite

A 62-year-old Lakeland man bitten on the neck by a spider six months ago has died from complications, the Lakeland Ledger reports.

In August, Ronald Reese was performing construction work in an old house when he was bitten by a brown recluse spider, his father told the Ledger. Reese later collapsed, and over the course of six months, endured a series of hospitalizations and a great deal of pain, his father said.

Encounters with the brown recluse are rare as they are not native to Florida, and are usually brought into the state. And they are not usually fatal. In this case, Polk County Medical Examiner Stephen Nelson said, Reese’s bite got infected,, and an abscess pressed on his spinal cord.

In other news about dangerous wildlife, this time from the Orlando Sentinel, Sorrento resident Josh Hennessy was attacked by a bear this week while sitting in the dark outside his mobile home. He was not seriously injured, and said he hoped wildlife officials won’t kill the bear.  

Originally founded in December 2006 as an independent grassroots publication dedicated to coverage of health issues in Florida, Health News Florida was acquired by WUSF Public Media in September 2012.