How to Kill Black Widows

When you think summer in Tucson, pest control problems with Black Widows is not the first item at the top of the list.  Summertime usually means getting ready for vacations, finding the family slip and slide, or doing chores around the house.   The message is look before you reach when getting items from your garage or shed in Tucson.

Black Widow spiders typically inhabit areas that are dark and seldom disturbed.  Garages and storage sheds fit that description perfectly.  Black Widows build a strong webs to catch unsuspecting insects to feed upon.  Unfortunately for homeowners, Black Widows are one of the few spiders that can seriously harm humans.   The spider produces a neurotoxic protein that is one of the most potent venoms secreted by an animal.

The initial bite may only have minimal localized pain, but symptoms can progress 20 minutes to an hour after the bite.  Symptoms include severe muscle cramps, abdominal pain, weakness, and tremors.  In severe cases symptoms could also include vomiting, fainting, chest pain, dizziness and possible respiratory difficulty.  The reaction will depend on the severity of the bite and your genetic predisposition to insects bites.  It is generally considered non-life threatening, but certainly unpleasant.

The Black Widow is infamous due to its known behavior of killing her male mate.  Females appear black and shinny with a large round abdomen often marked with a red hour glass under her abdomen.  Males are significantly smaller with a less developed abdomen.  Despite the females sincere attempt to kill the male and its diminutive size, the male sometimes survives the mating process.  The male actively tries to pin the female during the matting process to aid in his escape.

Black Widow webs are found low to the ground in dark areas.  The webs are highly irregular and considered very messy.  From a fun fact side the web is the strongest of any other spider.  The webs are easily visible, but often appear empty.  The Black Widows often remain hidden until the web is disturbed by unsuspecting insects.  Often yellowish balls will appear in the web.  These are spider egg sacks.  Each sack can have up to 300 potential spiders and a web can have up to a half dozen egg sacks.  While spider mortality rates are high, the ability to reproduce and spread are likely.

When you start foraging for your Summertime gear and equipment, look before you reach to avoid an unintentional Spider bite.  A better solution is to utilize Essential’s Pest Control Program to eliminate all your unwanted invaders, which includes Black Widows.

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