Spotting A False Widow Spider

False widow spiders have become increasingly popular in the common household garden and surrounding over the last decade, and have become more prominent in their existence, and are usually of huge interest compared to other UK species, due to their highly infectious bite. So, how can you spot a false widow spider?

The false widow spider gets its name from its famous lookalike the black widow, which is best known for its deadly bite that can be fatal to humans if not treated quickly. The black widow is one of the most feared insects in the world, and the false widow being it’s far less threatening name sake has heightened the attention it recieves.

Here are the specifics on a false widows appearance…

  • Up to 15mm or 32mm including legs.
  • False widows don’t live in nests, they instead build scaffold webs.
  • Oval body with a shiny finish
  • Cream and brown markings with red/orange legs

What about their bite?

If you’re not sure about whether you’ve been bitten or not by a false widow, there are some tell tale signs of a false widow spider bite.

  • Painful and tingling sensation
  • Itching and swelling can occur
  • Most symptoms should stop after 1-2 days but if the bite spreads or changes colour you should seek medical attention.

Although they get a lot of scary press, false widow spiders are generally harmless, and won’t often bite you unless they feel threatened which is hard to do when they will usually only build nests in high corners, to attract flying insects to their webs. If you do find one in your home you should remove it as like any other insect and avoid killing it, as they are important to the eco system and reduce the amount of flying pests that will irritate over the summer months.

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