How Do I Know If I Have An Infestation?
You will notice them in dry, dark places like storage sheds, barns and basements. Black widows live about 1 to 3 years so unless you haven’t been in your shed in a year, you most likely won’t have an infestation. Keep an eye out during late spring when mating season takes place. The babies are cannibalistic and will probably not survive to adulthood but getting rid of the eggs as well as the adults will aid in keeping an infestation at bay. This is a job for for the professionals at Foundation Pest Control.
What Do They Look Like?
- 8 long, black, spindly legs
- They are about 1.5” long, about the size of a small paper clip.
- Distinct red spots along the top of their “backs”
- A red “hour glass” shape on their bellies
- Males aren’t as dark and have red or pink spots.
What Do They Eat?
Black Widows are known as “man eaters” because they are just that. They will often eat the male as soon as they have mated. If the male is quick, he can get away. They also eat caterpillars, grasshoppers, mosquitoes and flies. Although their venom is deadly to other insects, it is not so for humans. Their bites do cause painful affects but are only potentially dangerous for the elderly, small children and those with health issues.
- They have “comb feet” which they use to wrap their prey in silk.
- Black Widows spin the strongest silk of any spider.
- Their webs are not pretty but are a jumbled mess in order to catch prey.
- The Praying Mantis is the Black Widow’s biggest predator.