Black Widow Spider…
The females in this species are far more famous, and dangerous, than the males. They have shiny black bodies with red markings. The males do not bite, but the venom of the female’s bite is fifteen times more potent than a rattlesnake’s, so thank goodness they only bite people if they are bothered! The bite will initially feel about like a pin prick, but within just a few minutes the victim will start feeling pain and other symptoms.
The female often kills the male soon after mating, which is how they got the name “widow”. She lays silken egg-balls (each of which contain several hundred eggs) attached to a web. However, only a few of the offspring manage to survive after hatching.
These spiders like to shelter in dry spots, and feed mainly on insects. When feeding, they puncture the prey with their fangs and release digestive enzymes into its body. The prey’s body liquefies and the spider then sucks up this liquid.
Black Widow Spiders are featured in the following books:
25 Most Poisonous Animals in the World
101 Facts… SPIDERS!
101 Facts… Desert Animals
View the complete list of 25 poisonous animals.
Black Widow Spider Close up
Dragonhood gives us an excellent close-up of the legendary black widow, including the red hour glass on its underside.
I’M ALIVE: Teen Survives Black Widow Spider Bite
AnimalPlanetTV shares with us the story of a young man’s meeting with the black widow.
First Aid & Safety Procedures: How to Identify & Treat Black Widow Spider Bites
Captain Joe Bruni from expertvillage gives us some tips on dealing with one of the most deadly spiders in the world.