Spider Exterminators

Black Widow Removal

Black widows are one of two venomous spiders found in McKinney, TX. Black widows are often found under objects or in dark hard to reach areas. If you have a black widow infestation, to maintain safety, it is recommended that while performing tasks where you cannot see where your hands are being placed (such as lifting boards or firewood or reaching into storage boxes) you should wear gloves to prevent being bitten by a hidden black widow spider.

Also, clothing should be checked thoroughly before wearing, especially if unused for a considerable time as a black widow may have taken up residence inside it.

More Information 

Three species of these are native to the McKinney, Texas area.

Brown Widow

Brown widows often vary in color, but most are a light to medium brown with gradients of black and white. They have an orange hourglass marking on the underside of the abdomen. Brown widows’ leg segments are banded, with one half of each segment lighter in color than the other half. Their back often has a row of white spots (rarely they will be orange or light blue), and there are a few white stripes on each side. A darker brown widow can often be difficult to distinguish from black widows.

It sometimes makes it easier to identify a brown widow if their egg sac if it is present. Their egg sacs resemble a sandspur and are tan, spherical, and have many small tufts of silk sticking out from them. Other widow spiders make white, smooth egg sacs tending to be pear-shaped.

Brown widows also tend to be extremely timid and have rarely been reported to bite. Brown widows will build webs anywhere that there is sufficient space to make one. Brown widows tend to be extremely abundant in houses and other man-made structures (e.g., barns, fences, guard rails, bridges). They reproduce frequently and disperse rapidly, Making them very hard to control.

Southern Black Widow

The southern black widow is the most common and most recognizable out of all of the widow spiders. When people think of a black widow this is often the spider they think about.

The southern black widow is a glossy jet black all over. It has a bright red hourglass marking on the underside of its abdomen and a red spot just above its spinnerets. The southern black widow occurs commonly throughout the state.

Northern Black Widow

The northern black widow is very similar to the southern black widow, except for its hourglass mark which is broken into 2 triangle-shaped markings. There is also a row of red spots down the middle of the back.

The northern black widow’s web is a large tangled mess which is generally found at the tip of a low tree branch.

How to Prevent Them

Generally, widow spiders are very timid and only bite in self-defense . Their bite symptoms are systemic, spreading through the body via the lymphatic system. The symptoms usually start about 1-3 hours after the bite has occurred. The most common symptoms of their bite are intense pain, rigid abdominal muscles, muscle cramping, nausea, vomiting, general malaise (not feeling well), local sweating and hypertension (high blood pressure).

If left untreated, bite symptoms will generally last 3-5 days. Treatment includes Calcium gluconate and/or antivenin which is administered to relieve or counteract symptoms.

For more information on Black Widows and others found in McKinney and other areas of Texas, please check out the Texas Department of State Health Services website here.

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