Black widow spiders are some species of spiders of the genus Latrodectus mactans It is known for its unique and striking appearance of women and the rumored tendency to eat companions. They are the most toxic spiders in North America. However, their bite is rarely fatal to humans.
What does a black widow look like?
Like in many cases Spider type, Male and female black widow look very different from each other. Jo-Anne Nina Sewlal, an arachnologist at the University of the West Indies, said in all black widow species, “Females are the most distinctive, with a shiny black body and a red hourglass-shaped marking on the underside of the round abdomen. There is. ” In Trinidad (Sewlal talked to Live Science in 2014 and died in 2020), the markings on the female hourglass can also be orange-yellow.
By comparison, men may be lighter in color, have a smaller abdomen, and have red or pink markings. Faculty of Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of California (UCDANR). Female black widow can be up to 0.5 inches (13 millimeters) in length, and males are usually about half the size of females.
Where do black widow live?
Latrodectus mactans Spiders are found in temperate regions of the world, including North America, Southern Europe, Asia, Australia, Africa and most of South America. In the United States, black widows are found primarily in the south and west, and inhabit not only forests, deserts and grasslands, but also urban areas. According to the St. Louis Zoo.. Black widow often builds houses near where people live and spins cobwebs in the dark corners inside and outside the building. According to North Carolina State University (NCSU).
What does a black widow eat?
Like many spiders, black widow eats other spiders and insects that get caught in their nets. However, despite the reputation of sexual cannibalism, females usually do not eat their peers, According to the Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture In Seattle, Washington.
“Only known Latrodectus mactans According to the museum, species that are cannibalistic in nature are no exception in the Southern Hemisphere, “says most black widowed men, who” survive to mate on another day. ” Hatched brothers, when they emerge from their eggs, Canada Nature Maintenance (NCC) says.
Black widow mainly eats flying insects and arachnids, but it is also known to capture and consume small vertebrates such as: Snake When Lizards, According to the Missouri Conservation Department.. When the prey gets entangled in the black widow’s net, the spider bites the poison and paralyzes the diet. After the prey has stopped moving, the spider releases digestive enzymes into the prey’s body, carrying away the food and eating it. According to the Faculty of Insects, Iowa State University (ISU).
How many species of black widow are there?
Has 31 species of so-called widow spiders Latrodectus mactans Genus; According to the St. Louis Zoo, five of them are black widow. The three North American spiders are the common name Black Widow. Western seeds, Latrodectus hesperusNorthern seeds, Latrodectus variolus; And southern species, Black widow spider, According to Smithsonian magazine..
“The black widow spider belongs to the spider family, commonly referred to as the spider family,” Sewlal said. “The comb-footed spider has a series of hard, short hairs in the fourth and final part.” I added. A pair of legs that resemble the teeth of a comb. It is used to drape silk over the prey when the spider is wrapping the prey. ”
There are also red widow and brown widow Latrodectus mactans Genus.
- Kingdom: Animal kingdom
- Subkai: Bilateria
- Lower bound: Protostome
- Upper gate: Ecdysozoa
- gate: Arthropods
- Amon: Chelicerata
- class: Spiders
- family: Tangle web spider
- Genus: Latrodectus mactans
How do black widow breed?
according to Canadian Geographic, Black widow is mostly lonely, except in late spring when mating takes place. Males ready for mating begin by spinning sperm-impregnated silk and then wrap the appendages near the head, called the pedipals. When they find a receptive female, they insert their sperm-covered palm into her reproductive opening, Live science previously reported..
According to the NCC, females then create a paper-like yolk sac that can contain hundreds of eggs and hatch after about 30 days. The larvae turn whitish or pale yellow after hatching and darken with each molt. According to the ISU, females mature in about 90 days and then live for about 180 days, while males mature after about 70 days and live for another 30 days.
However, Black widow spider According to the University of Michigan, black widow is known to live up to three years in the wild and up to four years in captivity. Animal diversity web..
How toxic is the bite of a black widow?
Female black widow is much larger than male, so their bites are more dangerous to people. The poison of the black widow is RattlesnakeHowever, spider bites are painful, but only in very young and very old people, because spiders provide much less poison than snakes, according to the Smithsonian Magazine.
“It’s rare to die from being bitten by this spider,” said Seural.
According to the Smithsonian, the bite of a black widow feels like a pinch to most people, but their toxins contain a chemical called alphalatrotoxin that quickly overwhelms nerve cells and causes swelling. Causes severe pain.
“The effects of bites by members of this genus vary from species to species, including nausea, heavy sweating, severe abdominal and back pain, muscle aches, high blood pressure, and diaphragmatic paralysis that can cause dyspnea. “Sewlal said.
According to, the pain can last for 8-12 hours and other symptoms can last for several days. Occupational Safety and Health Bureau.. Black widow spider antitoxins help minimize damage. According to UCDANR, antitoxin is effective for bites from all black widow races, and the pain usually disappears within 30 minutes.
Black Widow Spider: Facts about this infamous group of spiders
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