The biggest factor about black widow spiders is not their bite or how dangerous they can be, but how you can keep them away for good. So, of course, the most important part of this page is the information on how to control black widows, but first let's get a little background. Or skip it here.
Part 2 of our spider control series.
Females are the dangerous ones of the species. A mature female black widow spider has a large, black, shiny body and measures approximately 3/8 inch long, with one-inch legs. A bright red or orange-red hourglass shape can be found on the abdomen.
Spider Pest Control
The Black widow's web is white, very strong, and irregularly shaped It's generally spun in areas where water and insects are present.
Around the home webs can be found under outdoor furniture, barbeque grills, pool pumps, in storage areas, garages, wood piles, block fences and the corners of porches and patios.
The female black widow is shy. She hides near the web by day typically in some sort of sheltered spot and is most active at night, waiting on her web for prey to enter.
She produces hundreds of babies hatched from egg sacs resembling small mothballs. The young black widows are white and spread quickly after hatching.
The male black widow is much smaller, with brown and white coloring. Its bite cannot pierce human skin and is not harmful to humans because the spider is so small.
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The initial black widow spider bite may feel like a pin prick, which may go unnoticed. Initially victims experience little or no visible signs of the bite such as swelling. A red circular mark may appear about six hours after the bite.
These symptoms may be progressive aching sensations with muscle pain at the bite site spreading to the lower back, thighs and limbs. Symptoms often last up to 36 hours and lingering effects may last for several weeks.
For treatment Call the Arizona Poison and Drug Information Center at 1.800.222.1222 immediately to determine whether the bite victim can be managed at home or will require treatment by a physician or hospitalization. Severe cases may require antivenin treatment.
Spider Pest Control
Black Widows can be found in undisturbed areas around the house like in garages, sheds, etc., but rarely will you find them inside the home, but always, always check not only for spider presence but other pests as well, like scorpions, crickets, roaches, and others.
This is specially important to consider since a lot of these insects serve as food for black widows and other spiders. More on this here.
Before you start cleaning areas where you've found black widows and other spiders keep in mind that you can never be extra careful when picking up or moving objects that have been sitting for a while (i.e., cardboard boxes, flower pots, rubbish piles in the house or attic, storage bins, collections of paper, wood, etc.) More on this here.
Once you locate black widows or any other spider destroy their webs, egg sacs, and spiders by brushing or vacuuming.
Also use a fly swatter to crush them Only if you have a bad infestation should you use insecticides and pesticides. To control the black widow population spray the adult female with a strong insecticide and destroy the egg sacs.
Use a flashlight at night to locate the female black widow spider in her web waiting for prey. Coming Soon we will list products that are safe and most effective. And if all of this fails you can call Atomic exterminators or the one of your choice. More on this here.
The reality of spider control is really quite simple and can be summarized in two words, "prevention and control", both of which depend on cleanliness and having a pest control plan implemented.
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