A black widow crawling along
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How To Spot The Difference Between Black Widow And Brown Widow Spiders
Although black and brown widows may belong to the Theridiidae family, they are far from identical. Both spiders have distinct appearances and habitats.
The brown widow has a body length of no more than 1 inch. It can be various shades of brown and is usually adorned with stripes on its stomach and sides.
While it's true that you might come across some with orange-colored stripes, those aren't reliable for positive identification; these markings can fade as they mature.
Black widows have a shiny black appearance and can be up to 2 inches in size. Female black widows also have a distinct hourglass shape on the underside of their stomachs.
Unlike the versatile brown widow, which can live outdoors or in industrial settings, the black widow gravitates toward darker, more secluded spots, like basements and woodpiles.
There’s also a difference between their bites. The less aggressive brown widow has a mildly toxic bite that should be cleaned with soap and water before applying a cold compress.
In contrast, the black widow’s bite is highly venomous and can cause issues like severe pain and muscle cramps. A medical professional should be consulted for both types of bites.