Latrodectus Mactans

[quote]stumpy wrote:
Yet another reason why living in the north is a good thing.[/quote]

Don’t be so complacent. You can find one if you look :wink:

[quote]BigRagoo wrote:
Honestly, I don’t think anyone is sure. It could be a color contrast to warn potential predators that they are about to take on death. Such is the case with poison dart frogs, coral snakes, gila monsters, and certain catepillars.

Sharp color contrast, in nature, serves to those nearby as a warning meant to be seen, instead of the prey type animals that camouflage themselves.

[/quote]

Alot like the tribal T-Nation, huh?

If you can tell me, what is the range of the brown widow?

In PA I’ve run in to a bunch that look like black widows, but much lighter, and about the size of a nickel.

[quote]BigRagoo wrote:
stumpy wrote:
Yet another reason why living in the north is a good thing.

Don’t be so complacent. You can find one if you look ;)[/quote]

No kidding. I find buttloads of spiders while looking for mushrooms. Some damn grizzly looking little buggers too.

[quote]SkyzykS wrote:
Alot like the tribal T-Nation, huh?

If you can tell me, what is the range of the brown widow?

In PA I’ve run in to a bunch that look like black widows, but much lighter, and about the size of a nickel.

[/quote]

The brown widow can be found basically where any spiders like black widows can live. They enjoy dark, slightly damp cubby-type holes, such as basements, pump sheds, and wood sheds. Their body resembles a house spider, but the legs are more robust, like a black widow.

Here’s a pic that resembles the ones I have found.

[quote]SkyzykS wrote:
BigRagoo wrote:
stumpy wrote:
Yet another reason why living in the north is a good thing.

Don’t be so complacent. You can find one if you look :wink:

No kidding. I find buttloads of spiders while looking for mushrooms. Some damn grizzly looking little buggers too.
[/quote]

Most of those are hunters, like wolf spiders and jumping spiders. These don’t spin webs as a nest or trap. They, instead, actively seek prey and are primarily nocturnal. Tarantulas are this type.

No, the ones I run in to are realy sturdy looking, shorter legs, and more hairy.

Usualy under loose bark and logs, they dart back into small holes and recesses.
Ambush type of predators from what I can tell.

Interesting stuff. I remember wathing a series about a British spider hunter after south american ‘chicken’ spiders. Basically a kind of tarantula that was so big, it was said to pray on local chickens. Unfortunately he only found a 9" diameter cretin, but i was hooked on that 30 minute programme.

Obviously chicken spider was not the scientific name but it was a burrowing spider.

Google brown recluse and look at the first couple pictures of the guy’s thumb. Oh yeah, you will probably be scared of spiders for the rest of your life…

[quote]SkyzykS wrote:
No, the ones I run in to are realy sturdy looking, shorter legs, and more hairy.

Usualy under loose bark and logs, they dart back into small holes and recesses.
Ambush type of predators from what I can tell.
[/quote]

Hmmm…from that description, it may be wolf spiders, or borrowing spiders. I see many spiders that make funnel like webs (not the Australian funnel web spider) that get pretty big, look sturdy, and have a hairy abdomens. But without a pic, I can’t be sure.

Here’s a typical specie of wolf spider. Does it look like that?

[quote]panther2k wrote:
Google brown recluse and look at the first couple pictures of the guy’s thumb. Oh yeah, you will probably be scared of spiders for the rest of your life…[/quote]

Necrosis is a bitch.

[quote]supermick wrote:
Interesting stuff. I remember wathing a series about a British spider hunter after south american ‘chicken’ spiders. Basically a kind of tarantula that was so big, it was said to pray on local chickens. Unfortunately he only found a 9" diameter cretin, but i was hooked on that 30 minute programme.

Obviously chicken spider was not the scientific name but it was a burrowing spider.[/quote]

There are tarntulas in the Amazon that are big enough to eat small birds. Their leg span can be bigger than a dinner plate, with fangs at an inch long.

So, is the Brown Widow as dangerous to humans as the Black Widow? Also, I thought only the female spiders were dangers and the Male black widows were completely harmless to humans.

The only story I can share was when I lived in Flordia, I went to Ocala National State Park to go 4-wheeling. On one of the trails I was going, I happened to look at my leg and see a spider that looked highly disproportionate and colorful. Crazy long legs and a weird thorax.

I just smacked it off my leg, spooking me a bit. I told someone about it later and they said those spiders are everywhere and really dangerous…

I’ll try to find a picture of one if you dont know what Im talking about…

[quote]BluePfaltz wrote:
So, is the Brown Widow as dangerous to humans as the Black Widow? Also, I thought only the female spiders were dangers and the Male black widows were completely harmless to humans.

The only story I can share was when I lived in Flordia, I went to Ocala National State Park to go 4-wheeling. On one of the trails I was going, I happened to look at my leg and see a spider that looked highly disproportionate and colorful. Crazy long legs and a weird thorax.

I just smacked it off my leg, spooking me a bit. I told someone about it later and they said those spiders are everywhere and really dangerous…

I’ll try to find a picture of one if you dont know what Im talking about…[/quote]

No, the brown widow’s venom isn’t as potent as a black widow’s. But it can cause necrosis, and if bitten immediate treatment is a must.

I’m not sure of the spider you speak of in Fla. What was the coloration? I have seen many “lynx” spiders that live in meadows and are green to brown with long, stout legs with thick spike like hairs. They have an elongated abdomen and large frontal eyes. But they are not dangerous to humans.

Or, if it was late summer, it could have been a calico nephila, large spider, white cephalothorax, yellow abdomen, long black and amber legs.

Or a garden spider Argiope aurantia. Large spider, white cephalothorax, white and black mottled abdomen.

Both the nephila and the garden spider are web builders and are “seasonal”. They mature throughout the summer, and are full grown by August, when they mate and then die. Plus they aren’t a real threat. Bites reported from these have usually been similar to bee stings. They will leave a nice welt, but won’t be so necrotic as a recluse.

Oh, and to answer your ohter question, yes, only the female widows are dangerous.

Curiously, the male Australian funnel web spider’s venom is more toxic than the females. That’s an an exception to the rule.

The difference between the venom of a brown recluse spider and that of a black widow is significant. Brown recluse spider venom contains cytolytic elements which can cause creeping necrosis radiating from the bite site. It is important to note that not all brown recluse bite progress to a necrotic syndrome.

A large fraction of black widow venom is the protein alpha-latrotoxin, which is an extremely potent neurotoxin. Black widow venom is around fifteen times more potent by weight than rattlesnake venom. We are saved by the small size of the spider.

The neurotoxin affects motor neuron function locally around the bite site causing spasms of the voluntary muscles, and a generalized syndrome of faintness, pain, and nausea of variable severity.


No real knowledge to add, just a couple of pics of Aussie spiders. The Sydney Funnel Web is reported to be the deadliest of all spiders, I don’t know this as a fact but it has killed at least 13 people and is only found in an area of about a 160 km radius of Sydney. Maybe one of you guys could let us know some other facts.

[quote]barbos01 wrote:
The difference between the venom of a brown recluse spider and that of a black widow is significant. Brown recluse spider venom contains cytolytic elements which can cause creeping necrosis radiating from the bite site. It is important to note that not all brown recluse bite progress to a necrotic syndrome.

A large fraction of black widow venom is the protein alpha-latrotoxin, which is an extremely potent neurotoxin. Black widow venom is around fifteen times more potent by weight than rattlesnake venom. We are saved by the small size of the spider.

The neurotoxin affects motor neuron function locally around the bite site causing spasms of the voluntary muscles, and a generalized syndrome of faintness, pain, and nausea of variable severity. [/quote]

Precisely, which is why a recluse bite looks so much uglier days later than a widow bite. Both are not pleasant by any means.


Our Redback, very similar to your Black Widow.

L. geometricus, or brown widow, is native to Brazil which was introduced to and subsequently became established in Florida and Hawaii. It is not aggressive and is more shy than other widow spiders, all of which have a strong propensity for shyness.

Human bites have rarely been recorded and the brown widow is considered to be the least dangerous of the commonplace widow spiders.

Well me being retarded I had no idea what a Latrodectus Mactans was… boy do I regret clicking on this thread. I now feel the need to check all of my sheets before going to bed… I’m such a wimp.

Sooooooo… spiders are even grosser than I ever thought. Ehhh…