Black Widow Spider

Black Widow Spider

"Black widow spider 9854 lores" by James Gathany - http://phil.cdc.gov/phil/. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.

  • Females have rounded, shiny black abdomen with red markings typically on the underside that often form an hourglass shape
  • Females are 1.5 inches long; Males are smaller and lighter in color
  • Often build webs in protected areas like in barns, sheds, boxes, or woodpiles
  • Non-aggressive; bite only in self defense
  • Most venomous spider in North America
  • Venom affects the nervous system; symptoms include muscle aches, nausea, paralysis of diaphragm which makes breathing difficult
  • Solitary except to mate; Females often kill and eat the male after mating which gives this Black Widow spider it’s name