Eeek! A spider!
While most spiders don’t deserve our fear, there are a handful that do. In Texas, these are the brown recluse spider and the black widow.
Though neither spider is aggressive, they both will bite if disturbed and their victim may suffer severe symptoms including vomiting, cramping, fever, or even convulsions.
To avoid this, learn how to identify these two treacherous Texas spiders and how to keep them away from your home or business.
Female black widow spiders are jet black with large abdomens and grow to about 1 inch long. She has a characteristic reddish or yellowish hourglass-shaped marking on her underside.
Male black widow spiders are brown and much smaller at only about ¼ inch. They have venom but don’t bite humans, perhaps because their mouthparts are too small.
Brown recluses are golden brown and have a dark brown or black fiddle-shaped pattern on their heads. Their bodies are only about ¼ inch long with about a 1-inch leg span.
Black widow spiders in Texas prefer to stay outdoors. You might find them in woodpiles or under your porch. If they come indoors, you’re likely to see them in your basement, attic, garage, or anywhere other quiet location where people don’t spend a lot of time.
Brown recluses like to retreat in dark little hidey holes. So, watch out for them in your shoes or tucked into your clothes in the closet.
The black widow spider’s venom is reported to be about 15 times stronger than that of a rattlesnake. Thankfully, they only inject such a small amount. While that small dose may cause extremely unpleasant symptoms, it rarely results in death.
Symptoms can include:
- Abdominal cramping
- Lesion at the bite site
The venom of a brown recluse is quite potent and can necrotize (destroy) the tissue around the site of the bite. Infection at the site can lead to death in very few cases.
- Necrosis or a red, white, and blue lesion at the bit site
Though a bite from these spiders only rarely leads to death, the symptoms can be quite unpleasant. There is an antivenom available for black widow bites but is only used in extreme cases because of the risk of an anaphylactic reaction. There is no good antivenom for brown recluse bites.
Thus, the best way to protect yourself from spider bites is to put away the welcome mat and keep the spiders away in the first place. Here are a few best practices:
- Avoid using bright outdoor lighting as it attracts insects — a buffet for spiders
- Cut down weeds and grass around buildings to remove the habitat for both insects and spiders
- Seal up small openings that may allow spiders access to your home
- Vacuum up spiders, webs, and their egg sacs inside your home regularly
- Shake out shoes, clothing, and other household items that you haven’t used in a while
If you’re still as nervous as a long-tailed cat in a roomful of rocking chairs about spiders around your property, call in the pros to keep them away. Expert pest professionals from Buckaroo can apply special pesticides that will help control the spider population in and around your home.
Though spiders are largely undeserving of our fear and hatred, few of us are going to invite them in for a cold glass of sweet tea. In fact, we would prefer to keep them away from our homes and businesses as much as possible.
That’s where we come in. Here at Buckaroo Pest Protection, we are committed to using safe, effective methods to control spider populations and keep them away from your space.
If you’re concerned about poisonous spiders in your home or business, give us a call today!