Black Widow Spiders Pest Control Q&A

Black Widow Pest Control

Black widows are one of the most feared spiders in North America, because their venom is toxic.  These spiders are very distinctive in appearance; they are generally black and have a red hourglass-shaped marking on the underside of their abdomen. 

Where Are Black Widows Found?

Black widows can be found throughout North America and temperate locations throughout the world. Generally they nest in low areas, including garages, crawl spaces, and around the base of the home.  Here in the Triangle, black widows are very common.  Many people have black widows, and they do not even realize it.  Black widows avoid light, and they hide in sheltered places.  They are also more active during the night.

How Do I Identify A Black Widow?

Besides their iconic red hourglass belly and black bodies, you can identify a black widow web because they are irregular and more coarse in appearance than most spiderwebs.  Only females have venom, and generally, they are shy, except when egg-laying and guarding their eggs. Females are also much larger than males and males are a lighter color than females. If bitten, the pain is usually immediate and can last for up to 48 hours.

Can A Black Widow Kill You?

It’s unlikely that you will die from a black widow bite. However, it’s important to get medical treatment if bitten because the bites can make some people very sick especially children or people who are allergic to the venom.

Are Black Widows Aggressive?

As stated in a previous answer, black widows are quite shy and would prefer to hide rather than confront anyone. Often times people don’t even know they have black widows on their properties because they hide so well.

I can personally attest to this.  When we first moved into our house, I treated the perimeter of our home within the first week of living there.  The next day, there were so many dead black widows around the house, I could not believe it.  I would never have guessed that there would be so many if any at all.  Our daughter was very young at the time, and she enjoyed playing outside.  I felt confident letting her play outside knowing our house was regularly treated.

The above picture is from our front porch area (I moved some of them closer for picture-taking purposes).

Our general pest control program is designed to kill and protect against black widow spiders (as well as many other pests).