The false black widows are a group of spiders that resemble the black widow, but are actually different species. In this article, we’re going to take a look at both black widows and false black widows to see what sets them apart.
Why it’s so easy to misidentify black widows
The only black widows that have the distinctive look are the females. They’re the ones with the black shinny coloration and the red hourglass on the abdomen. Spiderlings are hard to distinguish from other species, and the males are smaller than females and either do not have the hourglass on the abdomen, or the markings are on the top not under the abdomen. The male markings can also be something other than the hourglass.
False black widow spider species
When it comes to false black widows, Steatoda grossa are the main false black widow spider species. They do not have the red hourglass marking, but their body shape is very similar to that of the black widow, and they have a glossy chocolate-brown coloration. Their bite is not very dangerous and it rarely occurs, but it can still be very painful.
Steatoda nobilis is known as the noble false widow spider, and is usually found in California. This species also has a similar body shape to the black widow and a brown coloration, but it has a cream-colored, skull-shaped marking on its abdomen. Other spiders that are often confused for black widows include brown widow spiders, red widows, the domestic house spider and the black house spider.
What to do if you have a widow-looking spider in the home
If you ever notice a spider that looks like a black widow in the home it’s best to be safe than sorry, and call over a pest control professional for an inspection. Black widow bites are very painful and uncomfortable, and they usually require medical assistance. A pro will be able to safely remove the infestation and ensure that reinfestation does not occur.
Getting rid of black widows should be a top priority. These spiders often hide in shoes or folded clothing, and when they are disturbed or pressed against the skin, they will deliver their dangerous bites. If you have a black widow infestation, or any questions about black widows and the control options available, contact us today and one of our team members will help you out.