The J'ba Fofi (Baka: "giant spider"), also known as the Congolese Giant Spider is a cryptozoological creature that is said to exist in the Congo, possibly representing a new species of arachnid. It is considered a cryptid and only in recent years has received publicity.
The J'ba Fofi is described as having a brownish body similar to that of a tarantula, with a legspan of four to six feet. Juvenile versions possess yellow coloring that turns brown as they grow older.
Sightings of the J'ba Fofi have been primarily in Africa and achieved the most recent publicity due to the work of Mokele-Mbembe English researcher William Gibbons. There have however been other accounts.
1938: Congo 
Reginald and Margurite Lloyd were driving a Ford truck through a trail when they spotted a spider resembling a tarantula crossing the path ahead of them. The creature's legspan was estimated at 3 feet. Their daughter Miss Maurgurite Lloyd would later relate this story in the 1990s to William Gibbons.
1942: Papua, New Guinea 
An Australian soldier at the Kokoda Trail said that he encountered a puppy-sized spider inhabiting a 10 to 15 foot sized web. It was described with having a bulky body, was black, and hairy like a tarantula.
1948: Leesville, Louisiana, United States 
William Slaydon and his grandchildren were walking north on Highway 171 to church when he motioned them to stop. After hearing a rustling in the bushes ahead a spider described as being the size of a washtub emerged and crossed the road. One of the grandchildren would later tell this story to his own son, Todd Partain, director of the documentary film "Eyes In The Dark: The Sasquatch Experience."
2001: Cameroon 
Timbo, chief of the Baka tribe in Cameroon tells William Gibbons that in November 2000 a J'ba Fofi had built a nest near their village.
2011: Amazon 
British cinematographer Richard Terry travelled to the Amazon to investigate reports of giant spiders in the June 13th episode of Man V Monster. At a remote village he was informed that giant spiders lived in holes deep within the jungle and measured roughly four feet in diameter.
2013: Texas 
A report from Texas comes of an "abnormally large spider" which was found crawling on the side of a house. It measured about four feet in diameter. It reportedly took several men several shots to kill the creature. This turned out to be a hoax.
Habitat and behavior 
The spiders are described by Baka natives as weaving lairs made of leaves and spinning a circular web between two trees. The animals are said to prey upon birds, duiker, and other small game animals. The Baka told Gibbons that these spiders are now rare due to dwindling habitat.
See also 
- Loren Coleman (November 11, 2010). "Camel Spiders and Other Alleged Giant Spiders". Cryptomundo.
- Timothy Bancroft-Hinchey (09-08-2010). "Fact or Fiction? Giant Spiders in Africa...and USA". English.pravda.ru.
- About Man V Monster Show - National Geographic Channel - UK
- Gibbons, William J., Mokele-Membe: Mystery Beast of the Congo Basin; Coachwhip Publications, 2010
- George M. Eberhart (2002). Mysterious creatures. 1. [A - M]. Abc-clio. ISBN 978-1-57607-283-7.
- Arment, Chad, "CZ Conversations: Giant Spiders", BioFortean Review 3, no 2; pp. 28–29
- Karl Shuker; Jonathan Downes, Janet Bord (2007). Extraordinary Animals Revisited. Cfz.