Spider Tea? False Viral Warning Says Family of 6 ‘Found Dead’

March 19, 2014 Updated: July 18, 2015

There’s a viral rumor going around that a family died after drinking tea from a kettle that had a dead spider inside of it, but it isn’t real.

“If you slept with water in the kettle don’t use it the next day. Please, ensure u re-rinse your kettle before using it in the morning. A family of 6 was found dead and a research was made that a deadly spider was found inside the kettle of which they drank tea from. Please, help and broadcast to all your contacts. This is serious guys, life can be taken by something so small,” the warning reads.

The photo then shows three brown recluse spiders and claims that a violin spider–a relative of the brown recluse and found in Africa–was discovered in the kettle that a family drank from.

However, the viral posting offers no sources of six people dying.

Spiders are venomous–not poisonous. Venomous spiders have to get their venom into your bloodstream or your lymphatic system in order for it to work. That means boiled venomous spiders wouldn’t get a person sick, let along six people.

“Spiders are venomous, not poisonous, which means for their venom to have a deleterious effect, it has to enter the bloodstream or the lymphatic system of the victim, which would not happen were someone to drink water in which a venomous (even a highly venomous) spider had been stewed to death. Moreover, such a toxin would be exceedingly unlikely to survive with much potency after having been diluted with enough water to brew tea for six people and then boiled thoroughly on top of that,” reads a post from Snopes, a hoax-debunking website.

The rumor started going around in mid-2013.