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Desert recluse spider bite pictures: Desert Recluse Spider Facts, Identification & Pictures


Desert Recluse Spider Facts, Identification & Pictures

The desert recluse is a brown colored spider belonging to the Sicariidae family. Found in certain parts of the United States, it is often confused with the brown recluse, though both are different from the other in many aspects and the latter does not dwell within the closest vicinity of the former.

Desert Recluse

Scientific Classification

Description and Identification


Size: Both the males and females are of the
same size being about ½ inch in length, having a leg span between 1.5 inches
and 2 inches.

Color: Tan, yellowish-tan, with their
abdomen being light brown in color.

Other Characteristic Features: Their body has a fiddle-shaped marking and like most recluse spiders they possess six eyes instead of eight, arranged in pairs of three.

Desert Recluse Size


The eggs are
small and round in size.

Desert Recluse Egg


spiderlings of the desert recluse like most others detach from their mother in
a span of few days from hatching.

The Web

Their webs
are irregular in shape and spun in areas which remain undisturbed. Moreover,
these spiders of hunting origin do not weave webs in order to obtain their

Are Desert
Recluse Spider Poisonous and Do they Bite

The bite of the desert recluse may be toxic, since it has a necrotic nature, damaging the skin as well as surrounding tissues severely, resulting in lesions which might take a considerable period of time for healing. Some people have also reported symptoms like nausea, fever, abdominal cramps, joint stiffness, headache, and fever. If someone has encountered the bite of this spider, then the first step of the treatment would be to care for the wound at the earliest and control the symptoms (if any) from increasing.

Desert Recluse Spider

Quick Facts

Lifespan 1 to 3
years on an average
Distribution Nevada,
Utah, Arizona, New Mexico, California and parts of Mexico
Habitat Mostly
found outdoors amidst dense vegetation as well as dens of packrats, they
hardly thrive indoors
Diet Small live
insects and sometimes even the dead ones.

Desert Recluse Spider Picture

Did You Know

  • Though
    the brown recluse and desert recluse are identical to each other in many ways,
    there are certain differences between the two, one of them being the area of
    habitation. The brown recluse also have a violin marking on its body that is
    absent in the desert recluse.

Image Credits: Utahpests.usu.edu, Blueskypest.com, Images.terro.com, Bioweb.uwlax.edu

What Does a Brown Recluse Look Like? Pictures and More

The brown recluse spider is found only in certain areas of the country, and it is rare for them to bite people. If you are in this region of the country, however, you will want to know what a brown recluse spider looks like, as their venom is capable of causing serious wounds.

These spiders are, on average, about the size of a quarter, including their legs. They are tan to dark brown and have a few distinct characteristics, including six eyes (most spiders have eight), and a violin- or fiddle-shaped marking.

Unfortunately, these descriptions don’t always hold up and you need an expert to accurately identify a brown recluse spider. It takes a close examination of the spider itself to rule out all the other species that look like a brown recluse but aren’t as potentially dangerous.

If anything, identifying a brown recluse is more about ruling out what it isn’t rather than figuring out what it is.

Why Brown Recluse Spiders Are Dangerous

Though bites from a brown recluse are rare, they can be dangerous. These spiders are not aggressive, but may bite if you inadvertently roll over on one in your bed, for example, or if one has been hiding in a piece of clothing.

Furthermore, a bite can be mistaken for something minor, like a red bump or a small wound. There is nothing that clearly identifies the bite of a brown recluse, and there is no blood test or culture that can show the presence of brown recluse venom in a suspected spider bite.

The venom of the brown recluse can cause a mild reaction or a severe one. Severe reactions are more common in immunocompromised people, the elderly, and children. If you suspect you have been bitten by a brown recluse spider, apply ice, elevate the affected area, and seek medical attention immediately. 

Brown Recluse Spider Bite Symptoms

A brown recluse bite is usually painless, and symptoms may not appear for several hours, at which point the area might become red, swollen, and tender. The majority of bites remain localized and heal within a few weeks without serious complications or medical treatment.

In more serious cases, a lesion may form, appearing as a dry, sinking bluish patch with irregular edges, a pale center, and redness on the outside. As the venom continues to destroy tissue, the bite wound may expand up to several inches over a period of days or weeks, eventually becoming a necrotic ulcer that can leave a deep scar.

Rarely, bites produce a systemic reaction accompanied by fever, chills, dizziness, rash, or vomiting.

How to Rule Out the Brown Recluse

If you’ve been bitten by a spider that you think may be a brown recluse, the best thing to do is to try to rule out that possibility by following these steps.

Determine If They Live in Your Area

Brown recluse spiders live in a well-defined area in the South Central part of the United States. They are called “recluse” because they are hard to find even in the regions in which they reside.

The scientific name for the brown recluse is Loxosceles reclusa, and they live in the red-colored area of the map below. The other colored areas on the map are home to other Loxosceles species (such as the Texan recluse, desert recluse, and more). These are related to the brown recluse and all have similar venom. Indeed, some of the other Loxesceles species have more dangerous venom than the brown recluse.

If the spider was found outside the known habitat of a brown recluse, then it is almost certainly not this type of spider. If it is outside of the other areas, it’s not even related to the brown recluse.

Rick Vetter

Brown recluse spiders like dark, dingy places where they can hide under things. Within their habitat, there can be serious infestations. Hence, if there is one spider, there are most likely dozens or even hundreds. However, even in homes with extensive infestations, it is unusual to be bitten.

If you have a specimen from inside the brown recluse zone (or if you think the experts are wrong about your particular spider even though you aren’t in brown recluse territory) you can try to figure out if it is a brown recluse from its anatomy.

Look at Its Legs

Loxosceles actually means “slanted legs.” If you look at a brown recluse from the side, you can see how the body sits low and the legs angle up to a point. It’s that angular, slanted leg shape that gives the brown recluse its scientific name.

Joao Paulo Burini / Getty Images

Two more distinct features of brown recluse legs include:

  • No spines: Unlike many other spider species, Loxosceles does not have spikes or spines on its legs. They are smooth.
  • Solid color: Some spiders have multicolored legs, but Loxosceles legs are solid, with no stripes and no patterns.

If a spider doesn’t have this type of leg, it’s definitely not a brown recluse. If it does, you’ll want to look at some other characteristics.

Check for Three Groups of Two Eyes

Assuming you’re in brown recluse country and you have a spider with a low-slung body on angled, smooth, solid color legs, the next thing is to look at the spider’s eyes.

Pablo Dolsan / Getty Images

Brown recluse spiders have six eyes. They’re paired in what are known as diads (groups of two) and arranged on the front and sides of the spider’s head. Other spider species might have eight eyes, or six eyes arranged in two triads (groups of three). You can’t be sure it is a brown recluse based only on the eyes, but if the eyes aren’t in the proper pattern, then it’s definitely not a brown recluse.

Inspect Its Body

There are two more characteristics necessary for this to be a Loxosceles:

Joao Paulo Burini / Getty Images

  • The body (without legs) has to be no more than 3/8 of an inch. Including the legs, the average brown recluse is around the size of a quarter.
  • The abdomen (big round part on the backside) needs to be a little fuzzy with very fine hairs and a solid color.

Find the Fiddle Marking

The one feature most commonly noted in descriptions of the brown recluse is the violin-shaped mark on its back.

Not all brown recluses have the classic violin mark. Even if it’s there, you might not be able to clearly see it. Furthermore, there are spiders that also have the violin marking on their backs that are not brown recluses.

The classic violin mark isn’t obvious on all species of loxosceles like this desert recluse, but the venom is just as bad.

Marshal Hedin

How to Avoid an Infestation

Brown recluse spiders are difficult to get rid of, largely because of their tendency to hide in dark areas. Crevices, corners, and wall-floor junctures, especially behind clutter and storage areas, make for ideal hiding places.

The best way to avoid an infestation of brown recluse spiders is to seal up the places in your home where they are likely to enter. Strategies include:

  • Using weather-stripping around windows and window frames
  • Filling cracks in floorboards with plastic wood filler or wood adhesive
  • Removing clutter

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you get rid of brown recluse spiders?

Glue traps can catch the spiders, but it’s best to call a professional exterminator who can use appropriate pesticides, which are more effective.

How do you treat a brown recluse bite?

Antihistamines, colchicine, dapsone, and corticosteroids are medications used to relieve symptoms. Antivenom, consisting of antibodies that neutralize the venom, can prevent large skin ulcers if administered within a few hours.

What should you do if you find a brown recluse in your home?

Call an exterminator. If you think you have been bitten by a brown recluse spider, apply ice, elevate the affected area, and seek medical attention immediately. Try to capture the spider so an expert can determine if it is actually a brown recluse, or another type of spider.

Are There Brown Recluse Spiders in Southern California?

Long Story Short: There Are No Brown Recluse Spiders in Southern California

Contrary to all the hysteria surrounding brown recluse spiders and the dangers they pose to humans, residents in Southern California don’t need to fret over the brown recluse spider.

Brown recluse spiders simply do not live in any area of Southern California, including:

  • Palm Springs
  • Coachella Valley
  • San Diego
  • Orange County
  • Riverside
  • San Marcos
  • Los Angeles

Time for a deep sigh of relief, right? Don’t exhale just yet. Although there are no brown recluse spiders nearby, we do have a few spiders crawling amongst us that can be dangerous to our well-being.

At Lloyd, we want to settle the debate once and for all: The spider you are seeing in the warmer areas of SoCal simply isn’t a brown recluse, but rather, it’s likely a desert recluse—which is very similar to the demonized brown recluse.

Additionally, Southern California features spiders like brown widows and black widows, although these spiders rarely bite humans unless aggressively handled or provoked. Bites are so rare that there hasn’t been a single bite amongst our field staff who tangle with them far more than a normal person would.

While we may be free from the dangers of the brown recluse, we have plenty of other spiders that should be on our radar as we’re in our yards, around our homes, or out and about. To better identify the exact species of spiders you might encounter, our pest control experts have put together this guide on all things dangerous spiders in Southern California.

Desert Recluse vs. Brown Recluse: What’s the Difference?

Southern California Recluse Characteristics

Both the desert recluse (L. Deserta) and the brown recluse (L. Reclusa) belong to the family Loxosceles, meaning “with slanting legs” in Greek. These spiders feature similar color variations, but the brown recluse typically features darker markings on their bodies than the desert recluse.

The brown and desert recluse spiders feature:

  • Light tan, dark brown, or yellowish-brown color
  • Uniform color across cephalothorax (fused head and thorax), abdomen, and legs
  • Oval abdomens

Brown recluse and desert recluse spiders are known for their “reclusive” behaviors, avoiding potential predators at all costs. Because they are nocturnal, they do most of their hunting at night and hide during the day.

Violin or Fiddle-Shaped Markings

As the brown recluse’s claim to fame, they feature a violin-like marking on the top of their cephalothorax. Confusingly enough, some desert recluse spiders can possess similar violin-like markings on their backs, but not always. If they do, their violin mark will be much lighter.

Recluse Venom

The brown recluse and the desert recluse both cause Loxoscelism by injecting a small dose of venom—known as sphingomyelinase D, a dermonecrosis-causing enzyme—while striking their prey or a would-be predator. In layman’s terms, necrosis-causing enzymes cause human tissue to deteriorate, meaning severe bites can eat away at your flesh.

While desert recluses contain the same type of venom as brown recluses, the chances of you being bitten by one are extremely slim—and the chance of being mortally wounded by one is even slimmer.

In fact, there hasn’t been a single reported death caused by a desert recluse bite in Southern California. Additionally, most bites from these recluses won’t inject you with enough venom to eat away at your skin. Recluse bites typically go away on their own, leaving little to no harm done.

Regardless of this fact, if you think you’ve been bitten by a desert recluse, it’s important to seek out medical attention. Often, suspected recluse bites are bites from other arthropods or undiagnosed diseases and bacterial infections.

Brown Widows

Scientifically known as Latrodectus geometricus, the brown widow spider has been spinning webs across Southern California since the early 2000s. Thought to have evolved from Africa but discovered in South America, these arachnids are venomous and come in a variety of colors, making them difficult to distinguish from their eery cousin, the black widow.

Brown Widow Characteristics

The brown widow comes in a variety of brownish colors throughout its life stages.

Spiderlings and Adolescents

Brown widow spiderlings and adolescents look almost identical to their black widow counterparts, as they feature:

  • Tan legs
  • Tan cephalothorax with a black stripe
  • White, rounded abdomen with black spots

To differentiate the two, always remember that brown widow spiderlings and adolescents usually have more brown on them—or lighter brownish variations—than their black widow counterparts.

Female Brown Widows

The female brown widow spider can look strikingly like an immature female black widow, especially once both spiders are about half grown. It’s important to note that immature female black widows have an orange-colored, longitudinal stripe that runs up the abdomen, while the immature brown widow has a darker, blotchier longitudinal stripe that only goes about halfway up the abdomen.

Common female brown widow features include:

  • Light- to dark-brown cephalothorax and abdomen
  • Tan and brown-banded legs
  • Orange hourglass shapes on abdomens

While these characteristics resemble the most common variations of adult female brown widows, their colors can differentiate drastically. Some adult females can be so dark brown that they appear like black widows, with slightly reddish- or yellowish-orange hourglass markings.

Male Brown Widows

Adult male brown widows are significantly smaller than females and their black widow counterparts, featuring similar colorations as brown widow spiderlings with two large papal bulbs—copulatory organs of the male spider—near the front limbs.

For a highly detailed, comprehensive list of brown widow identifiers, check out UC Riverside’s guide on how to identify brown widow spiders.

Brown Widow Egg Sacs

Known as the easiest way to identify brown widows, their egg sacs are tan and spherical with sharp, silk points sticking out of them. These sacs help differentiate from the black widow’s, as their eggs feature white, smooth, and round surfaces.

Brown Widow Venom

Brown widows have a neurotoxic venom—a venom that affects nerve-muscle function—that causes Latrodectism, which can include symptoms like:

  • Pain
  • Muscle rigidity
  • Vomiting
  • Sweating

Thankfully, brown widows simply don’t have the power or the neurotoxin reserves to cause Latrodectism in most human bite victims. Brown widow bites often aren’t fatal either, as the effects of the toxin remain in the bite area and surrounding tissue. Normally, brown widow bites leave behind a red mark typical of a spider bite, healing on its own over time.

Western Black Widows

Arguably the most recognizable spider on the planet, the black widow—or Latrodectus hesperus—is a fear-inducing arachnid with a bigger dose of venom than the brown widow or recluse.

Black Widow Characteristics

Physical characteristics of adult female black widows include:

  • Bright red, hourglass-like abdominal mark
  • Shiny black pigment across abdomens, cephalothorax, and legs
  • Rounded abdomen

Also, when female black widows have consumed a large meal, their bodies can become so enlarged and stretched that they take on a brown or plum hue.

Immature Female and Male Black Widows

Much like the brown widow, immature female and male black widows are tan with brown-banded legs. These black widows feature a white abdomen with brown markings and are significantly smaller than the adult female widow.

Black Widow Venom

Although bites from adult female black widows are rare, they can pack a serious punch. With a larger venom reservoir and stronger biting muscles than brown widows, these spiders deliver a dose of neurotoxin into their prey and potential predators. It’s important to note that neurotoxins do not function like dermonecrosis-causing enzymes, meaning their bites do not cause flesh to deteriorate.

Although a black widow bite is often painless—or simply feels like a pinprick—human bite victims will begin to feel symptoms within an hour. These bites appear as small red marks that sometimes feature red streaking away from the wound.

According to UC Agriculture and Natural Resources, symptoms include:

  • Rigid stomach muscles, which some medical professionals have misdiagnosed as appendicitis
  • Sweating, sometimes of just the bitten body part, such as a bite to the hand that results in only the arm sweating profusely
  • Pain that can be local, radiating, or regional
  • Urine retention
  • Numbness, agitation, fever, and patchy paralysis (less common)

While these are the most severe symptoms of a black widow bite, most human bite victims experience flu-like symptoms that last a few days.

Note: If you suspect a black widow bite—or spotted a black widow biting you—seek professional medical attention.

How to Protect Your Family from These Dangerous Spiders

All spiders—including brown widows, black widows, and the desert recluse—are fond of spaces like covered barbecues, covered patio furniture, and the inside of garden shoes that are often stored outside or in a garage.

It makes sense to exercise extra care when uncovering patio furniture or turning on the gas to the barbecue to make sure you’re not grabbing at any of these spiders. Also, if you store any shoes outside of your house, make sure you shake them before slipping into them.

Professional Spider Control in Southern California

At Lloyd Pest Control, we want you to know that there aren’t brown recluse spiders in Southern California, but there are a few other spiders—like desert recluses, brown widows, and black widows—that call SoCal home.

With more than eight decades of experience treating pest pressures in Southern California, we have professional spider treatments and pest barriers that can help. But never forget that perhaps the best way to rid yourself of a spider is a swift whack with the bottom of a shoe. And don’t worry if you miss the first time; they won’t chase you. We promise!

The Alleged Brown Recluse Spider Bite · California Poison Control System (CPCS)

By Jeffrey R. Suchard, MD


Loxosceles reclusa, or the brown recluse spider is one of the most feared and at the same time misunderstood arthropods in the United States. Although their venom contains several enzymes and other agents capable of causing skin necrosis, these spiders are shy and rarely ever bite except when threatened. Our common human fear of spiders has helped propagate the undeserved reputation of this spider.

Case 1 presentation

A 38-year-old man presents to an Emergency Department in Orange County, California for evaluation of a brown recluse spider bite. He reports seeing a “violin” spider crawling on his arm about an hour earlier. He thinks that the spider bit him, although he cannot be certain because he immediately crushed the spider and then cut a 0.5 cm incision into his arm and proceeded to “suck out the poison.” He is tachycardic and very anxious, but has a normal physical examination other than some mild erythema surrounding the non-bleeding, superficial incision. He is wondering whether he requires antitoxin, antibiotics, or possibly amputation, since his friends have told him that brown recluse spider bites are often fatal. The spider was described as less than 1 cm in size, dark-colored (brown or black), and having a body shaped like a violin, rather than having a violin-shaped marking on its cephalothorax.

Case 2 presentation

A 36-year-old woman was convinced by her mother to seek immediate medical care for a 3×4 cm necrotic skin lesion to her breast. Six days earlier, the patient saw her primary physician in the southeastern California desert, and he diagnosed a brown recluse spider bite. The patient reported having seen spiders in her home, although she could not recall a specific biting incident. She also reported that the lesion had improved somewhat with oral fluoroquinolone therapy and that she had no fevers or chills. The patient was also an insulin-dependent diabetic, with a beside glucose measurement >500 mg/dL. She had forgotten to bring her insulin when she traveled to visit her mother yesterday. The patient refused treatment for hyperglycemia and any further evaluation to rule out diabetic ketoacidosis, and left the hospital against medical advice.


  1. What is the real diagnosis for each case?
  2. Are any Loxosceles spiders actually present in California?


Loxosceles reclusa, the brown recluse spider, is endemic to the south-central United States, ranging from Texas to Georgia and from Louisiana to Iowa.1 Isolated specimens have been found in association with recent shipments of goods into California from endemic areas, although reports of such brown recluse spider stowaways are extraordinarily rare (less than 10 have ever been collected2) and could not cause even a tiny fraction of the large number of alleged bites reported in this state. Some other species of the Loxosceles genus are found in the southwest United States, but they tend to cause less serious envenomations than the brown recluse. The range of the desert recluse (Loxosceles deserta), for instance, extends into areas of southeastern California bordering on Arizona, although this fails to coincide with areas of dense human population where reports of necrotic arachnidism are most common. In regions where Loxosceles reclusa spiders are commonly found, they infrequently cause clinically significant envenomations. Because of their shy, reclusive nature, these spiders rarely come into contact with people. Homes in endemic areas often contain several hundred spiders, yet the human inhabitants almost never suffer bites.3

Despite these facts, many patients in non-endemic areas like California continue to believe that their skin lesions are caused by brown recluse spiders. What factors could explain the high incidence of reported “brown recluse spider” bites? First, many people have irrational fears about insects and other arthropods. Spiders may be especially maligned because of their known predatorial nature, at least with regard to other arthropods, which is falsely assumed to extend to humans as well. Second, the human psyche would prefer to believe that unexplained signs and symptoms are caused by some external source instead of a somatic illness or weakness. Such beliefs may persist in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary. Third, the wide differential diagnosis for necrotic skin lesions is not always considered, and such lesions are instead ascribed to a spider bite. The differential diagnosis of necrotic skin lesions is extensive. Misdiagnosing dermonecrotic wounds of unclear etiology as spider bites is a worldwide issue, and has been reported in other countries such as Australia, New Zealand and Brazil.4,5 Finally, the “deadly” reputation of these spiders has been largely predicated by the lay press and literature, with even mystery novels implicating fatal reactions following a significant bite.


True envenomation by the brown recluse spider is associated with development of necrotic skin wounds. Loxosceles reclusa venom contains several cytotoxic enzymes. Skin ulceration results from a combination of localized endothelial cell damage by venom and ischemia secondary to inflammation caused by leukocyte infiltration. Hemolysis and intravascular coagulation may occur in cases of systemic toxicity. However, the pathophysiology of alleged brown recluse spider bites is as varied as the potential causes of dermonecrotic wounds.

Clinical presentation

Actual brown recluse spider bites are reported to feel like a pinprick. Within a few hours, the bitten area can become tender, itchy, tingly, or swollen; sometimes an erythematous skin reaction surrounded by pallor (a “target” lesion) can be seen shortly after envenomation. A purpuric lesion or blister may form at the site, which develops into an eschar with surrounding induration and edema. A necrotic ulcer forms when the eschar separates. Ulceration may occur within several hours or up to 2 weeks after envenomation. The ulcers may take weeks to months to heal. In addition, systemic complications such as nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, fevers and chills have been reported. Cases of hemolytic anemia have also been associated with Loxosceles bites, especially in children.


Physicians with expertise in treating necrotic arachnidism report that misdiagnosis is a common problem, even in brown recluse-endemic areas.6,7 Many causes of necrotic skin lesions exist, including various bacterial, viral, and fungal infections, primary dermatitides, vasculitides, thromboembolic phenomena, drug side-effects, diabetic and artifactual ulcers, skin cancer, the bites of other arthropods or animals, and even chemical burns. Most claims of spider bites, especially in California, have upon further investigation been attributed to other causes. Without a reliable eyewitness history or capture of the offending vector, any claim of a spider bite, particularly a brown recluse spider bite in a non-endemic area, should be viewed skeptically.

Yet another curious phenomenon related to alleged spider bites is the unclear purpose of making such a diagnosis. The great majority of actual and presumed necrotic arachnidism cases in endemic areas have a benign clinical course.8,9 Most patients are treated with local wound care and, at times, oral antibiotics. Only a few percent of patients go on to require skin grafting or hospitalization. If a patient’s dermonecrotic wound is from a bacterial infection, as many likely are, misdiagnosis as a spider bite is not terribly serious, as the most commonly used treatment regimen would be indicated anyway. Because such patients will improve, they will conclude that the diagnosis of a brown recluse spider bite was correct, further promoting the myth. The primary purpose in diagnosing necrotic arachnidism, then, appears to be aimed simply at providing a tangible and remotely plausible label for an otherwise unidentified disease process.

A recently reported trend among alleged spider bites in California is the presence of infection with methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). Outbreaks of MRSA infection among correctional facility inmates have been reported in California and a few other states.10,11 In Los Angeles county, an outbreak was initially ascribed to spider bites. Tight clustering of persons with sub-optimal skin hygiene has been postulated as a cause.

A similar outbreak of MRSA-associated cellulitis, abscesses, and necrotizing fasciitis has occurred in a drug rehabilitation halfway-house located near UCI Medical Center: each patient was convinced he or she had been bitten by a brown recluse spider. Other notable cases of alleged spider bites we have seen include pyoderma gangrenosum (confirmed by biopsy) and angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitor-induced angioedema. Freedman et al. reported a case of bioterrorism-related cutaneous anthrax in a 7-month-old infant that was initially misdiagnosed as a brown recluse spider bite.12 The extreme unlikelihood of a recluse spider bite occurring in Manhattan did not initially sway the physicians from this diagnosis, nor did it alter their treatment regimen of a necrotic skin wound with associated systemic complications. When this epidemiologic point was brought to their attention, the authors responded that anthrax was also nearly impossible (despite multiple highly-publicized cases of cutaneous and inhalational anthrax at the time), and that a spider was postulated to have hidden “within the infant’s stroller or the family’s belongings” during a recent trip to Loxosceles-endemic regions.13


Proper treatment of necrotic skin wounds obviously relies first on an accurate diagnosis. Most cases of alleged brown recluse spider bites are probably due to skin infections; cultures should be obtained to confirm the diagnosis, and the patient can be treated with appropriate antibiotics and routine local wound care measures. Dermatology consultation may benefit patients whose wounds do not appear to respond to this treatment, and referral to a surgeon can also be considered.

  1. Vetter RS. Myth: idiopathic wounds are often due to brown recluse or other spider bites throughout the United States. West J Med 2000;173:357-358.
  2. Vetter R. Myth of the brown recluse: fact, fear, and loathing. Available at: spiders.ucr.edu/myth.html, accessed November 16, 2003.
  3. Vetter RS, Barger DK. An infestation of 2,055 brown recluse spiders (Araneae: Sicariidae) and no envenomations in a Kansas home: implications for bite diagnosis in nonendemic areas. J Med Entomol 2002;39:948-951.
  4. Isbister GK. Spider mythology across the world. West J Med 2001;175:86-87.
  5. Nishioka Sde A. Misdiagnosis of brown recluse spider bite. West J Med 2001;174:240.
  6. Anderson PC. Loxocelism and the history of the Missouri brown spider: a recollection of Dr. Joseph Flynn. Mo Med 1990;87:747-752.
  7. Wasserman GS. Brown recluse spider envenomations. In The Clinical Practice of Emergency Medicine, 3rd edition. Harwood-Nuss A, ed. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Philadelphia. 2001. pp.1638-1640.
  8. Wright SW, Wrenn KD, Murray L, Seger D. Clinical presentation and outcome of brown recluse spider bite. Ann Emerg Med 1997;30:28-32.
  9. Cacy J, Mold JW. The clinical characteristics or brown recluse spider bites treated by family physicians: an OKPRN study. Oklahoma Physicians Research Network. J Fam Pract 1999;48:536-42.
  10. CDC. Outbreak of community-associated methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus skin infections – Los Angeles County, California, 2002-2003. MMWR 2003;52:88.
  11. CDC. Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus infections in correctional facilities – Georgia, California, and Texas, 2001-2003. MMWR 2003;52:992-996.
  12. Freedman A, Afonja O, Chang MW, et al. Cutaneous anthrax associated with microangiopathic hemolytic anemia and coagulopathy in a 7-month-old infant. JAMA 2002;287:869-874.
  13. Suchard JR, Friedlander AM, Borkowsky W, Chang MW. Diagnosis and treatment of cutaneous anthrax. JAMA 2002;288:43-44. [Letter]

Summary and discussion of case questions

The first patient was suffering from arachnophobia-generated anxiety, in addition to an unnecessary, self-inflicted minor skin incision. The patient was informed that his description of the spider was inconsistent with Loxosceles reclusa. The patient had his tetanus immunization status updated and was discharged home; the final diagnosis was “possible arthropod bite.”

The second patient did not have a convincing history of spider exposure, let alone an actual bite. Her history was much more consistent with poorly controlled diabetes and a superimposed necrotic skin infection, most likely from skin flora. The diagnosis was therefore ecthyma. Since the lesion was improving, the patient was advised to continue the oral fluoroquinolone and to follow-up with her primary physician.

To reiterate, although they are not endemic to the region, Loxosceles spiders have occasionally been found in various parts of California, mostly due to stowaways during travel. Recently, colonies of L. laeta, a South American native species brought into this country during immigration, have been found more frequently in Los Angeles, and appear to have become established. Significant necrotic bites from these spiders can occur but have not yet been well documented in this country.

Consultation assistance

A resource for information on arthropod bites in southern California is Rick Vetter, PhD, an arachnologist with the Department of Entomology at UC Riverside. In addition to publishing works about actual and alleged spider bites, some of which are referenced above, Dr. Vetter is willing to review and identify any suspected brown recluse spider. More details: The Former “show me the spider” Brown Recluse Challenge.

In addition, poison specialists and physicians skilled in the diagnosis and management of spider and other arthropod bites and stings can be reached at the California Poison Control System hot line.

The Brown Recluse Spider Bite: A Guide on Symptoms and Prevention


There are certain things you should understand about spider bites. Click here to learn about the brown recluse spider bite symptoms and prevention.

Brown Recluse spider bite? Spiders play an important role in the ecosystem, but that doesn’t mean you want to get too up close and personal with certain species.

While many spiders are virtually harmless, the brown recluse can cause serious harm to humans.

If you’re dealing with a brown recluse spider bite or you want to know how to treat a bite, read on to learn more about symptoms and how to prevent the bite from happening in the first place.

Facts About the Infamous Brown Recluse

The brown recluse is among only a few spiders in North America that are considered dangerous to humans. Thankfully, deaths from these spiders are very rare and have only been reported in children younger than seven years of age.

The brown recluse spider is native to the Midwestern and Southeastern states, but that doesn’t mean that it only lives in these areas. There have been a few claims that this infamous spider was spotted in states like California and Florida, but there’s no evidence to prove that they have made these parts of the country their habitat.

As more people travel, it’s not surprising that an individual brown recluse can show up every now and again. Another spider called the desert recluse can be found in states like Arizona, Texas, and California.

Both the brown and desert recluse have a bite that can cause skin irritation and other serious symptoms. You can spot a brown recluse spider by its violin pattern that is found on the part of the body where its legs are attached.

A brown recluse is not hairy and has a yellowish-tan or brown body and darker legs. The spider is small in size with legs that are approximately one inch long.

Brown recluse spiders are not typically aggressive, and will likely only bite you if they are threatened. You could also be bitten if the spider ends up getting pressed directly against the skin. Most spiders including the brown recluse look for dark, dry environments like a closet, attic, porch, barn, basement, or woodpile.

The brown recluse has a small web with an unusual pattern, and it often makes its home in corners or deep crevices. Most reported bites have been reported during the summer.

The Effects of Spider Venom

The venom of a brown recluse is highly poisonous, and it can be extremely toxic to a human’s tissues and cells. The venom is more potent than a rattlesnake’s but because of its small size, it won’t affect you as much as if you were to be bitten by the snake.

Venom is a collection of specific enzymes that can cause the destruction of local cell membranes once they are released into the skin. These enzymes disrupt body tissue causing it to break down and lead to tissue death (also known as necrosis).

If you’re bitten by a brown recluse spider, the venom can affect the skin, fat, and blood vessels that are immediately surrounding the area of the bite. When you’re bitten, your body creates an immune response. This response results in the release of things like histamines and white blood cells to help minimize the damage.

In severe cases, a recluse spider bite can cause the destruction of red blood cells and low platelet count. It may even create blood clots or the loss of the ability to form blood clots.

Even more extreme cases may involve acute renal failure (also known as kidney damage), coma, or even death.

Symptoms of a Recluse Spider Bite

If you think you’ve been bitten by a brown recluse spider, it’s important to know the common symptoms. You may not notice anything unusual at first since the initial bite is usually painless.

You might feel minor burning near the bite site similar to a bee sting. A small white blister may develop, and then you’ll start to feel more intense effects around two to eight hours later.

Some serious symptoms of a recluse spider bite include severe pain at the bite location that can last around four hours. This is also accompanied by severe itching and redness.

You could also feel nauseous and may even vomit after you’ve been bitten by a brown recluse. Fever and muscle pain are also common and can cause you to feel weak, dizzy, or fatigued.

Look closely if you think you’ve been bitten and be aware of any changes to your skin. Just like other spider bites, there should be the telltale sign of two distinct fang marks where the spider sunk into your flesh.

Over time, most people heal from a brown recluse bite with very little scarring. The site may become firm and could possibly show signs of mild blistering or it may even turn a blue color.

If your skin starts to change color, it could lead to necrosis which is a dangerous lesion of the skin. Blistering is common, but any death of the skin or subcutaneous fat should be addressed by a healthcare professional immediately. In rare cases, a recluse spider bite can cause extremely severe necrotic lesions that show deep, wide borders.

Making a Diagnosis

If you are concerned about any type of insect bite and the pain and the redness does not subside, contact a physician right away. Go to a local emergency room or doctor’s office the same day you were bitten, and bring the spider with you if possible.

When you bring the culprit with you, it’s much easier for the doctor to make an accurate diagnosis. If you don’t have the spider, the doctor will do their best to try and determine what species bit you.

Many victims don’t know they’ve been bitten until symptoms start to develop. The doctor will ask you about the time, location, and other key information regarding when and where you were bitten.  Make sure you tell them about any allergies you have or medications you’re currently taking.

Treating Spider Bites

There is currently no antivenom for brown recluse bites. If you’ve been bitten by an insect, the first thing you should do is apply ice to the bite location to reduce pain and swelling.

Keep the area elevated above your heart whenever possible, and wash the bite area with cool water and some mild soap. Don’t participate in strenuous activity since it could spread the venom into your skin or bloodstream.

If you’re in pain, try acetaminophen to help give you some relief. Never apply heat to any type of bite, as this could speed up tissue damage. You should also avoid applying steroid creams to insect bites.

If a doctor diagnoses you with a brown recluse bite, they may give you prescription treatments to help relieve the pain and swelling. Follow up visits may be required to ensure that you’re healing properly.

Preventing Brown Recluse Spider Bites

While there’s no guarantee that you won’t be bitten by a brown recluse spider, there are some things you can do to be proactive. First, clean your home thoroughly and pay special attention cracks and crevices where these spiders like to hide.

The best line of defense is to remove any possibility of a habitat for the spider to live and thrive. Get rid of any excess clutter in your attic, basement, or garage and move firewood and building materials away from your home.

Check your windows and doors to make sure they’re sealed tight. Clean behind your window shutters often, as this is a common area where the brown recluse likes to hide.

Switch your current outdoor lights with yellow or sodium vapor light bulbs that are less attractive to insects. With fewer insects, you’ll have less potential food for spiders to prey on. When in doubt, hire a professional pest control company to check for spiders and keep the brown recluse and other species out of your home.

Don’t Be a Victim

Once you’re aware of the symptoms of a brown recluse spider bite, you’ll know what to look for and when to seek professional medical treatment. Remember that you might not notice symptoms for a few hours, so be diligent and pay attention if things start to change.

With some simple preventative measures and help from a professional exterminator, you can keep yourself and your family safe from recluse bites.

If you want to know more about spiders and other pests, or need pest control services in your Jackson, MS home or business please visit our site at https://synergy2ms.com.  Feel free to read more about us and decide if Synergy² is the right company for you.  We have over 200 Five-Star Google reviews for pest control service in the Jackson metro area (Jackson/Madison/Brandon/Ridgeland). Check out our newest location reviews for pest control service in Jackson, MS here!

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Barry Pitts, Synergy² Owner


Pharmacist and Synergy² Pest owner, Barry Pitts, is a long-time Madison, MS resident with a passion for applying advanced scientific pest principles to pest control services in the Jackson metro area.  Combining exceptional customer service with cutting-edge pest control technology allows Synergy² to provide residents of the Jackson metro area with the highest levels of pest control available today.

Desert Recluse Spiders – Phoenix Pest Control And Exterminators

These spiders are found in the hot and humid desert environments of California, Nevada, Arizona, and Utah. Recluse spiders are known to have a violin-shaped mark on their backs, but with the Desert Recluse spider, these markings may be a bit more difficult to see as they’re mostly a uniform tan or brown in color.

Wolf spiders, commonly mistaken for recluse spiders, have 8 eyes whereas the Recluse has 6 eyes arranged in three groups of two – this separates them from a lot of other spider species since most spiders have 8 eyes.

They’re ¼ to ½ inch long, and spin irregularly shaped webs where they spend most of their day in, before going out to hunt for food during the night. They feed on small insects but will occasionally dine on a large insect if it’s already dead.

They’re rarely found indoors, and prefer the outdoors in dark, undisturbed places. They may be found in dead cacti, wood, and may even stay in rodent burrows where they may also have a steadier stream of insect food.

If found indoors, like most other spiders, they may be found resting along cracks and crevices on your walls, or even under an undisturbed pile of laundry or other debris.

They typically live for 2 to 4 years, and may produce over 100 spiderlings a year.

Desert Recluse bites may cause reddened skin that may develop blisters, and the bite site will be quite itchy for the first few hours. Their bites, while perhaps not immediately painful for all bite victims, are necrotic and may cause a breakdown of tissue several days after the bite, which may then take several weeks or months to heal.

Other symptoms of a Recluse bite may be fever and chills, skin rashes, vomiting or nausea, or even joint pain.

Necrotic flesh is black, dead tissue, so if you suspect that you’ve been bitten by a Recluse spider, seek medical attention right away.

If possible, try to capture the spider that bit you so you can bring it in for positive identification by professional staff.

Now if you’ve found a Recluse spider in your home or property, you may want to get in touch with a professional pest control company to have them come and take a look – there may be more Recluse spiders in your home that you haven’t discovered yet. Professionals can remove these dangerous spiders and other pests to help ensure your safety, and companies like Watchdog Pest Control will put in measures to prevent them from coming back.

Measures you can put in place to prevent Desert Recluse spiders from finding your home appealing are sealing the cracks along your walls that they can use as entry points. You may also want to invest in screens for your windows, and place steel mesh on any outside vent.

These measures would also help deter other pests from coming in to your home, and remember, since Desert Recluse spider feed on insects, the less you have in your home, the less appealing it is for them to stay there.

Recluse Spiders in Arizona –

Chances are you’ve heard some horror stories about recluse spiders, particularly the brown recluse spider. People typically think that brown recluse bites can lead to terrible infection and disfigurement, and that they are a common and dangerous pest in the United States.

While recluse spiders (which belong to the genus Loxosceles) are widespread across the country, there are only 11 native species, and only two are likely to be encountered in Arizona – the Arizona recluse and the desert recluse. We do not have established colonies of brown recluse spiders in Arizona, and they are not native to our environment, according to the Arizona Cooperative Extension.

While the chance of encountering true brown recluse spiders in Arizona is rare, you may see Arizona recluse or desert recluse spiders in or near your home. We wanted to give you the tools you need to identify them, keep them out of your home, and prevent recluse spider bites.


Recluse spiders are often referred to as “fiddleback” or “violin” spiders because they have a violin shape on their cephalothorax. However, the desert recluse is nearly always a uniform brown color, and the violin marking can be difficult to see. Striped wolf spiders and other spiders with dark markings are often misidentified as recluse spiders.

Full-grown recluse spiders can be up to 1” in diameter, including their leg span. One feature that sets recluse spiders apart from other spiders is that they have six rather than eight pairs of eyes.

Recluse webs are irregular, mostly flat, and sticky. They are easy to overlook and are not often seen by humans.

The best way to identify a recluse spider is to ask a professional. We would be happy to take a  look at a specimen you’ve caught, or photos you’ve taken, to help you identify them.


True brown recluse spiders usually live near humans in urban areas, and depend on man-made structures for shelter. Desert recluse and Arizona recluse spiders are typically less reliant on humans, and are most often found living well away from them. They prefer dry, dark places, and can be found in dead cacti, wood piles, cinder block wall crevices, storage areas, attics and piles of debris that go undisturbed.

They spend their days sitting on their webs, and go on foraging missions well away from their webs at night. Recluse infestations are rare in Arizona, and when they do occur, there usually aren’t as many gathered in one place as in brown recluse infestations.

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Since recluse spiders take shelter in piles of debris and clothes, storage areas and wood piles, it is important to keep those areas of your home clean and tidy. Recluse spiders can hitchhike into your home on firewood or other items you might bring in from the desert.

To prevent recluse spider infestations, keep wood debris stacked well away from your home. Keep firewood stacked off the ground, and don’t store it indoors. Pick clothing up and don’t leave it in piles on the floor. If you store wearable items like boots or gloves, keep them in airtight storage containers, or in plastic bags that are sealed.

Recluse Spider Bites

Recluse bites initially produce a red, swollen area that may develop into a blister. If they go untreated, recluse bites can develop into open, weeping sores. If you think you have been bitten by a recluse spider, seek medical attention immediately because individual reactions to their bites can vary.

Recluse spider bites, while they can be painful, are rarely fatal. Other infections and skin conditions are often misdiagnosed as recluse spider bites. Unless you see characteristic puncture marks on your skin, or witness the spider biting you, you may be reacting to something else. When in doubt, seek medical attention.

To prevent recluse spider bites, always wear cloves when cleaning out little-used storage areas or attics, and when handling yard waste and wood debris. If you are picking up clothing items off the floor, shake them you before putting them on. Always check stored clothing items and shoes before wearing them.

If you suspect a recluse spider infestation in your home, be sure to give us a call. We will implement targeted treatments that will disrupt spider nesting areas and prevent them from returning to your house. We will also inspect around your home to find and knock down active spider webs. This is not only a benefit aesthetically, but also aids in the control of all types of spiders.

Photo credit: Tony P Iwane via photopin cc

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look like

The brown recluse spider, whose name is Loxosceles reclusa in Latin, is a highly venomous arthropod.

The consequences of his bite can be extremely dangerous to human health. In this article, we will look at what a hermit spider looks like, how its bite threatens, and how to help a victim from its venom.


Appearance and dimensions

Recognizing a hermit spider is relatively easy:

  1. Despite the name, the body of Loxosceles reclusa is not always brown in color – it is gray or brown-yellow.The size of females in this species is slightly larger than the size of males.
  2. Representatives of this species of spiders have an unusual mark – a brown spot in the form of a violin. This is a feature of adult hermits, but sometimes it is also present in younger individuals.

    Did you know? Arachnophobia is a fear of representatives of the order of spiders. This phobia is one of the most common in the world and affects approximately 10% of men and 50% of women. The severity of the phobia can vary in one direction or another.

  3. A clear difference between the brown hermit and other arachnoids in the number of eyes. He has only three pairs of them, while other spiders have four, that is, 8 pieces.
  4. In a calm state, the hermit’s legs are placed on the sides of the body, but in case of alarm, he immediately becomes in a protective position: he pulls his front legs under him, raises the pedipalps and straightens the hind limbs.
  5. Adult Loxosceles reclusa’s back coloration ranges from tan to dark brown.
  6. Belly and legs are evenly colored, without stripes or spots. The legs are long and slender, without noticeable spines. The belly is covered with fine, short hairs that, when viewed without magnification under a microscope, can appear as soft fur.
  7. The joints of the limbs are slightly lighter in color than the legs.



Loxosceles can be found almost all over the world in warm, tropical regions. This species is common in parts of the United States of America (Southern California, Colorado, New Mexico).

The appearance of these spiders in other countries can happen by accident – they are transported along with cargo by air or across the ocean. In Russia and Ukraine, they have not yet been seen. In nature, brown recluse spiders live outdoors under rocks, logs, and wood debris.

The spider can also live in the same room with people. Hermits are resistant enough to temperature extremes to withstand winter in unheated basements or stifling summer heat in attics, spending long months without food or water.

During the daytime, brown recluse spiders usually hide in dark, secluded places, living up to their nickname. Adult females rarely go far from their hiding place, while males and young females are more mobile and prone to long journeys.

Video: about the hermit spider

It is they who often get into shoes, clothes or bed at night and bite people when there is an accidental contact of a spider with a person.

Sometimes Loxosceles reclusa can be seen during the day – they move on floors, walls and other open surfaces.This behavior can be caused by hunger, pesticide use, or other factors.

How to hunt and what eats

Loxosceles reclusa hunts at night for insects. It does not use a net to capture prey – the cobwebs on walls, ceilings, bushes, or trees almost always belong to harmless spiders.

Their presence in the house is also unpleasant for many people, but these spiders also prey on brown recluses, thereby bringing benefits.

Loxosceles reclusa – a medium-sized spider, does not produce hunting nets, so it hunts the victim in the classic way: it catches up, attacks, injects poison and immobilizes, killing the victim with the help of poison.

The poison in the brown recluse is fatal to insects – it is a very toxic substance, the nature of which has not been fully understood. Loxosceles reclusa hunts only small insects, whose size is much smaller than its own.

Did you know? With the exception of one family (Uloboridae), all spiders are venomous.They use poison to get food and when they bite their prey, they constrict the venom glands, sending poison through their fangs into the victim’s body. Spider venom paralyzes prey.


Spiders lay their eggs on a bed of silk, which they cook immediately after mating. As soon as the clutch is finished, the female covers it with a large amount of cobwebs, which makes the cocoon dense and waterproof. Cocoons look like whitish rounded sacs, the size of which does not exceed 7–8 mm.

Each cocoon contains about 40-50 eggs. After hatching, the little spiders grow, gradually increasing in size, passing through the molt five to eight times as they mature, before reaching sexual maturity.

Loxosceles reclusa become adults about a year after birth, live from 2 to 4 years. Females lay up to 5 egg cocoons throughout their lives. Infestation rates with these spiders in homes vary widely, from the presence of one or more specimens to several hundred.

Consequences and help with a bite

Like other spiders, the brown recluse is not aggressive. The majority of accidents occur if a person accidentally crushes a spider and the arachnoid comes into contact with bare skin.

Some people can be bitten in bed, other bites occur when moving things and pieces of furniture, or when a person puts on clothes that the spider had chosen for its daytime shelter shortly before.

Loxosceles reclusa have very small mandibles and cannot bite a person through clothing. Initially, the bite is painless. Often, the victim is not aware of the bite until after 3–8 hours the bitten area becomes reddened and swollen.

Most spider bites remain localized, and recovery occurs within 3 weeks without serious complications or the need for medical intervention.

In other cases, the victim may develop a necrotic lesion, which manifests itself as a dry bluish spot on the skin, with uneven edges, a pale center and peripheral redness.

Often there is an ulcer inside the lesion. As the poison continues to destroy tissue, the wound may grow larger over several days or weeks.

In the case of subcutaneous fat necrosis that has begun, healing may take up to three years. Complications include local nerve damage and secondary infection. A necrotic ulcer leaves a deep scar after healing.

Often, bites in the early stages (in the first 72 hours) cause in humans:

  • fever;
  • chills;
  • dizziness;
  • rash;
  • vomiting;
  • weakness;
  • headache;
  • myalgia;
  • arthralgia;
  • Maculopapular rash and leukocytosis.

Hemolytic anemia, hemoglobinuria and renal failure sometimes develop, which can lead to death. The wound should be rinsed, a sterile dressing and a cold compress should be applied.

Important! Severe reactions to Loxosceles reclusa venom are more common in children, the elderly and patients with poor health.

The affected limb must be immobilized, it must be given an elevated position, if necessary, analgesics, antibiotics must be administered.Spider Poisoning Serum is effective, but not approved in all countries. The drug can be used only after the inflammation has been relieved.

Difficulties in diagnosis

Spider bites are difficult to diagnose even for doctors. This is especially difficult to do based only on the appearance of the wound.

Externally, a necrotic wound is very similar to the effects of other diseases:

  • bacterial and fungal infections;
  • gangrene;
  • diabetic or peptic ulcer disease;
  • Staphyloccus aureus bacterial infectious disease outbreak.
How to avoid being bitten

If these poisonous spiders are found in the house, precautions must be taken to protect people from possible bites:

  1. Beds should be away from walls.
  2. Carpets, stripes, curtains, draperies must be temporarily removed.
  3. Shoes and clothing should also be stored in plastic zippered covers or at least shaken well before being worn.Remove unwanted items from your home and store rarely used items in plastic containers with airtight lids.
  4. After preliminary preparation, all corners and crevices are treated with poisons against arachnoids in the house.

Important! If there is an assumption that the victim was bitten by Loxosceles reclusa, but this occurs outside the usual territorial habitat of these spiders, then you need to carefully examine the room and find an individual to transfer it to doctors.Identification and confirmation of its toxicity will help the doctor to correctly prescribe a course of treatment.

The brown recluse spider does not live in our area en masse, but there is always the possibility that a poisonous guest can be brought into the country along with imported goods.

To avoid trouble, you need to make it a rule to shake your clothes before putting them on, inspect the bedding before going to bed, and if intruders are found, treat nooks and crannies in the house with insecticides.

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Bite of a poisonous brown recluse spider – Medical Center “Liko-Med”

Publication date
3 October 2018

What is it?

A venomous brown recluse spider bite requires urgent medical attention. Such a bite can lead to significant damage to the skin, and even be fatal for children.

Timely treatment increases the likelihood of a favorable prognosis. This spider has a yellow-brown or dark brown coloration and a violin-like pattern on its back. It dwells in dark, closed places, such as under a woodpile or a porch. Most commonly, the brown recluse spider is found in the United States (southern and central regions). As a rule, the spider bites only in response to aggression (for example, if it is accidentally pinned down).


A suspected brown recluse spider bite requires immediate medical attention. It is advisable to bring the spider itself to the doctor in a container for identification purposes.

What to expect?

Bite symptoms develop slowly. First, pain builds up over a period of several hours, and a small white blister appears. The venom can then continue to destroy the skin, which will require a visit to the doctor after about three to four days to remove the dead tissue and prevent infection. After being bitten, the wound is sometimes left open for up to six weeks. Some victims may need surgery to repair the defects caused by the bite. In severe but rare cases, skin lesions are severe enough to result in amputation.


Treatment for brown recluse spider bite includes:

  • drugs to relieve pain and itching;
  • antibiotics in case of infection;
  • tetanus shot;
  • Fixation bandage in case of localized bite in the elbow or knee area.

What can you do yourself?

Brown recluse spider bite requires emergency medical attention. Before starting treatment, you can relieve symptoms by using the following rules:

  • wash the bite area with soapy water;
  • Apply ice, wrapped in a napkin, to the bite area for 10 minutes, with 10-minute breaks;
  • Ensure that the affected area is elevated above the level of the heart, if possible.

How does it get worse?

Lack of treatment, the presence of a weak immune system aggravate the course of the disease.

When to see a doctor?

In the event of a bite, medical attention is required immediately.

What to ask a doctor?

  • Are symptoms caused by a brown recluse spider bite?
  • What kind of treatment is needed?
  • What are the possible complications?
  • When can we expect improvement?
  • How can brown recluse spider bites be avoided in the future?

Making a diagnosis

When making a diagnosis, the doctor specifies the time and place where the brown recluse spider bite occurred, examines the victim, and may prescribe blood and urine tests.

The “Atrocities” of the hermit spider – Priroda.SU

Brown recluse spider, aka Brown recluse (Latin: Loxosceles reclusa ), lives mainly in the southeastern United States.
Theoretically, the Mediterranean, Georgia and the south of Russia – Sochi may also turn out to be favorable for its habitat. Fortunately, so far this representative of arachnids has not been brought to us, but in view of the upcoming Olympics in Sochi, this representative of arachnids may appear with us, and global warming may contribute to the further advancement of this species further north. So it will not be a sin to get acquainted with this arachnid in more detail.
This spider is famous primarily for its bites. At one time, photographs of a bitten person were already published on the network.

Bite site Brown recluse after 5 days

Bite site Brown recluse after 6 days

Bite site Brown recluse 9002


9000 Brown recluse after 10 days

Brown recluse brown.The head and ribcage are black, somewhat reminiscent of a violin (sometimes it is called the “spider-violin”). The dimensions of this spider are small – up to one centimeter long and half a centimeter wide. Females are slightly larger. Both sexes are poisonous. The lifespan of an individual is one to two years. Clearly structured trapping nets are not weaved; they are usually bypassed with the help of disordered threads. They feed on caught insects (I wonder why they need such a strong poison?).

Feels great in a human-changed environment.Loves shady places, found in abundance in basements, sheds, garages, attics, toilets, pipe systems, sewer manholes. Spiders can take refuge in shoe boxes, boots, under furniture, behind baseboards and paintings. In general, they are found where there is a tree and twilight.
The brown recluse spider is not aggressive. He usually bites people when they encroach on his life and territory. Most people find themselves bitten due to not being careful and not being careful in the cleaning process.The spider bites some people right in bed, other people when they put on shoes or clothes in which this representative of arachnids hid.

The bite very often goes unnoticed, but in most cases the sensation is similar to that of a needle prick. Then within 2-8 hours the pain makes itself felt. Further, the situation develops depending on the amount of poison that has entered the bloodstream. In most cases, it still does not reach what is shown in the photo. The venom of the brown recluse spider has a hemolytic effect, which means it causes necrosis and tissue destruction, which is very clearly visible in the photos and video below.A bite for young children, elderly and sick people can be fatal.

In case of a bite, it is necessary in any way to slow down the spread of the poison from the bite site (you can put ice on the bite site), treat the wound with antiseptics and you should go to the hospital (it is advisable to bring the spider that bit you). Previously, treatment was carried out by removing damaged human tissue, now – with the help of antibiotics and hormones. Serum is used with timely treatment.

In order not to be bitten, the following recommendations must be followed:

  • shake boots and clothes each time before putting them on;
  • inspect the bed before going to bed;
  • Remove boxes and other rubbish from under the bed, and move the bed itself away from the wall.

Below are videos showing the life and “tricks” of this inconspicuous spider.
This is how we run

Informative video for residents of the South of the USA, where this spider is found

Palm damaged by a spider bite


0 a nomad spider in the shoulder

A guy squeezing out pus and semi-decomposed tissue from the bite on the chin

One-year-old child bitten by a spider

The process of treating the site of a spider bite

A selection of various brown spider injuries caused by http: // www. youtube.com/watch?v=VoJ2_mJGFUM

Another collection of the consequences of the bite of this spider. The video concludes with a shot of the worst case of a recluse spider bite.


Brown recluse spider 🌟 Photo, description, range, food, enemies ✔

The brown recluse spider is very small, but very dangerous – its poison is so strong that without timely medical assistance it can lead to death, while the pain begins to be felt far from immediately, and it can bite a sleeping person.This dangerous creature often lives in abandoned buildings and even residential buildings.

Origin of the species and description

Photo: Brown recluse spider

The appearance of the first arachnids dates back to the Devonian period – however, these were not at all the same species that inhabit our planet now. Arachnids evolve rather quickly, as a result, old species are dying out, but not just like that, but changing and giving rise to new ones.

The oldest arachnids became the first sea creatures to land on land, settled on it, and when other living creatures followed them, they began to lead a predatory lifestyle.The main difference from other living beings was their web, produced by special glands originating from one of the pairs of legs.

It is by the use of the web that it is determined when the ancestors of the species of spiders originated: among the simplest ones, it is used only to create cocoons, while the more developed ones find other uses for it, for example, they put nets or make nests. The brown recluse spider is one of those that use the web only for the cocoon.

Video: Brown Hermit Spider

But this does not mean that the species itself is ancient – like all other species of arachnids, it appeared not so long ago, within several tens of millions of years ago, it just changed relatively little in comparison with its ancient ancestors. In general, the evolution of spiders has been relatively little studied and further research is needed.

Scientists have not yet established reliably the chain along which most of them developed, including hermit spiders. It is only clear that the lifestyle of the brown recluse spider is similar to that of its distant ancestors – it is even possible that such a strong poison was necessary for him against some already extinct creatures, and therefore has survived to this day. This species was described in 1940 by V. Gerch and S. Mulayk.Received the scientific name Loxosceles reclusa, assigned to the family Sicariidae.

Appearance and features

Photo: Poisonous brown recluse spider

The dimensions of this spider are quite small: with legs up to 20 mm, and without them it is even 5-7 mm. Usually the female is larger, but the difference is small. The body of the spider is covered with hairs, thick and short, in appearance they can be mistaken for fur.

Also differs from most other spiders in that it has only 6 eyes, not 8. By this sign it can be recognized: it is clearly visible that in the middle of the brown recluse spider there is only one pair of eyes, and two more on the sides of her.Otherwise, it differs little from some other spiders, which is why they are often confused.

However, there is one more important sign: on his cephalothorax you can see a pattern that resembles a violin. However, this drawing still needs to be considered, often a magnifying glass is required for this. Although these spiders are called brown, in reality not all of them are like that, some are gray or dark yellow.

Their web does not have a clear and ordered pattern, and it seems to be woven completely chaotically – in fact, it is so.The web is sticky to the touch. Paws are thin and long. The alarmed recluse spider pulls in the front pair, rests on the back pair and lifts the middle one up. So he warns that he is ready to defend himself, this pose is designed to scare off the aggressor.

Interesting fact: Previously it was believed that in ancient times giant spiders lived on Earth, but relatively recently it turned out that a mistake was made during the reconstruction of fossils, and in fact they are not at all so large. So the largest spider lives on our planet to this day – it is the goliath tarantula, its length is 28 centimeters.

Where does the brown recluse spider live?

Photo: Brown hermit spider in Turkey

Main habitat – southeastern United States from Illinois and Nebraska to Texas and Virginia. In California, it can be found occasionally and only indoors. In the states located within the specified range, it is found quite often.

In some places even too often – sometimes there are real invasions of these spiders. They can be found outside the designated area, but much less often, only if they are accidentally brought in.It is able to live in various natural conditions, so that even if during transportation it turns out to be in very distant lands, for example, in Europe, it successfully survives.

There is information that he took root in Africa and South America. In addition, in recent years it has been noticed quite often in Australia, it is possible that it has become entrenched on this continent as well. Until the habitat of these spiders outside North America has not yet been reliably established, information about them is fragmentary.

He prefers a room as a habitat, it is best if it is warm and dry.At the same time, he was called a hermit for a reason, but because he does not like company and prefers to settle in abandoned premises, or simply uninhabited, such as summer houses, basements or attics.

It will not become an obstacle even if the room is unheated: the hermit spider is quite capable of surviving the very moderate winter cold inherent in its habitat. And yet he does not like the cold, and therefore in winter, living quarters can also move through doors or windows.

He prefers to hide from people and live in secluded places: behind skirting boards, furniture, radiators.It can also live at a distance from dwellings, in various shelters, for example, in a rock or under logs.

Now you know where the brown recluse spider lives. Let’s see what it is.

What does the brown recluse spider eat?

Photo: Brown recluse spider

He hunts exclusively on small insects, inferior in size to himself, most often significantly. This is due to the fact that he does not set trapping nets, but hunts without them: he hunts down the prey, after which he attacks it and bites, injecting poison.Without the help of the network, it is difficult for him to cope with large prey – it can turn out to be dangerous.

In his diet:

  • small midges;
  • 90,013 mosquitoes

  • mol;
  • 90,013 small spiders, including fellow tribesmen;

  • and the like.

After being bitten, the victim is immediately paralyzed, and she can no longer resist – and most often dies after a few moments, since the poison in this spider is very strong. This method of hunting is still less effective than using a net, and therefore a hermit spider sometimes has to be left without food for a very long time.

His body is accustomed to such a situation – it can store nutrients for future use for several weeks or even a month and a half in advance. It hunts at night, during the day it usually rests in secluded places – it does not like sunlight at all and tries to avoid it.

Interesting fact: Usually spider venom is poisonous to the extent necessary for food. So, if a spider feeds on insects the size of a fly, it is just enough to quickly immobilize it. The larger the prey the spider hunts, the stronger its venom.

But with this species everything is completely different: it hunts for very small animals, but its poison is extremely toxic even for humans – and they are not afraid of the poison of almost any other spider. For researchers, it still remains a mystery for what reasons, in the course of evolution, he began to produce such a powerful poison.

Characteristics of character and lifestyle

Photo: Brown hermit spider in Russia

Always tries to dwell in solitude so that he is not disturbed. This means that even if he settled in an apartment, he cannot be found somewhere in a conspicuous place, except perhaps during a hunt.In its course, it can move far away from the nest, especially if it does not live indoors, but in nature.

If there is little prey in the place where he lives, he may even move to another. But long walks on the hunt are characteristic primarily of males, they also migrate more often, but females are much less easy to climb and spend almost all their time in the nest, trying not to move away from it.

Since he prefers to hide from people and is active at night, you can usually meet him just at night, when he hunts – most often spiders bite people precisely because they disturb them, not noticing in the dark.A spider can show up in a shoe drawer or in a closet, and sometimes hunting can even take him to bed.

If they do not encounter people, then they live quite a long time by the standards of spiders – on average 3-4 years, sometimes they can even reach the age of 6 years. During this time, the female manages to lay eggs many times, so if you leave the hermit spider alone, at some point you can find that there is already a whole family of them – therefore it is better to fight them right away, without waiting until there are a lot of them.

Social structure and reproduction

Photo: Poisonous brown recluse spider

Almost always live one by one, however, the possibility of forming groups is not excluded. The reasons why these spiders, usually avoiding the society of congeners, sometimes begin to live in groups, moreover, in large ones, have not yet been reliably established.

But one can only pity the owners of the premises in which such a group settled: it will be very difficult and dangerous to fight them, there are cases of real invasions, and for the owners they sometimes ended very sadly, because these spiders are extremely poisonous.

At the same time, they are usually not inclined to attack people, and indeed any creatures other than prey: they only bite if they believe that they were attacked. The problem here is that due to the small size of the spider, people sometimes simply do not notice it – and also due to the fact that meetings often take place in the dark.

For example, a spider may be considered an attack if a limb is accidentally pinned down. In addition, females can be very aggressive if a person is close to their nest with a clutch – they can bite even if he does not take any aggressive actions.

Reproduction can occur several times a year – after fertilization, the female lays eggs in a cocoon, several dozen, sometimes up to fifty. After that, it stays nearby all the time and protects the clutch, even practically stops hunting. After hatching, the spiders grow rapidly for the first time, and after about a month they begin to live separately. They reach sexual maturity by about a year.

Natural enemies of hermit spiders

Photo: Dangerous brown recluse spider

Although it is a very poisonous and dangerous predator, there are also larger, more agile opponents who are not afraid of its poison, who already feed on it.

These include:

When living in nature, it is threatened by many dangers, which is why, despite effective reproduction, the population of cinnamon hermit spiders remains quite stable – a very large number of them are exterminated by predators.

This is especially true for young spiders, predators are much easier to hunt for them than for those who have already gained experience, who have learned to hide and defend themselves, and have become very dangerous adult hermit spiders. After all, an unsuccessful hunt for such a poisonous spider can end in the death of the hunter himself!

But in apartments there are much less threats to them, because in them these spiders can reproduce quickly.Other spiders become the most terrible enemy in them, because although a hermit spider is dangerous for humans, by the standards of many other spiders it is relatively small in size, inferior in dexterity and strength.

Therefore, the presence of harmless spiders in the home can be useful. For example, haymakers are very effective against hermits, they are completely harmless to humans. Also among the enemies of the brown recluse spider, of course, are the people themselves.

Since they are very dangerous, they are often purposefully fought with, using poisonous substances to remove them from houses or utility rooms.Removing them from homes in the US states that are part of the range of these spiders is one of the main activities of pest control specialists.

Population and species status

Photo: Brown recluse spider

Although the habitat is not very wide and covers only the states in the southeastern United States, they are inhabited by representatives of this species very densely, in the opinion of many residents of these states, even too much.

So their population is large and nothing threatens them – they themselves are certainly not going to die out, and it is not easy to breed them.It is their excessive reproduction that causes concern: for example, there is information that the population of the brown recluse spider is growing significantly in those areas where it has been introduced.

There is a risk that it will gain a foothold in these new territories, and even on other continents, and will begin to actively multiply there as well. Given its danger, such a development of events is extremely undesirable, because it becomes more and more difficult to deal with it as it spreads.

Interesting fact: In the United States, about 7,000 people suffer from bites of this spider every year.Its poison is very dangerous, while at first the bite may seem insignificant – usually there is almost no pain from it, and it is comparable to a mosquito. It starts to hurt after 3-4 hours, and more severe consequences occur after 7-8 hours.

Symptoms: nausea, weakness and dizziness, headache – all this indicates poisoning. If the bitten spider looks like a brown recluse, you cannot wait for the symptoms – you must immediately go to the hospital, because in the absence of timely treatment, necrosis is possible, moreover, everything can even end in death.

Difficult to hatch and rapidly multiplying The brown recluse spider is one of the most dangerous uninvited occupants living in the neighborhood of humans. Therefore, being in its habitats, you should be careful, and if you are bitten, immediately consult a doctor – this is the only way to prevent the onset of very unpleasant consequences.

Date of publication: 20.06.2019

Date of update: 25.09.2019 at 13:33

Author: Alekseeva Inna

90,000 photos of skin lesions, symptoms, first aid and treatment of a spider bite

Spider bite

Not in all cases, a spider bite is dangerous to human health and life.Possible consequences depend on the type of insect and the individual reactions of the victim’s body to the enzymes that the spider injects during the bite. To reduce the risk of developing severe consequences, it is necessary to know the main rules of first aid and the principles of treatment.

What a spider bite looks like

All representatives of spiders have poisonous glands. A toxic substance is necessary to immobilize the victim, liquefy the viscera. Some spiders have enough poison for fruit flies, mosquitoes, others paralyze rodents and amphibians.The latter are usually called poisonous, it is their bites that can be fatal for a person.

Spiders bite with special fangs – chelicera. They are located in the front of the cephalothorax and have different shapes. In terms of power, the power is different for all predators. Some barely bite through the skin, others pierce the “tusks” at the very base. Bites differ in the strength of pain – there is an instant burning pain or discomfort after a while.


Spiders do not attack people on purpose, they bite, protecting their own lives.Most of the bites occur due to a person’s carelessness, when he does not notice the predator, or out of excessive curiosity, as well as improper handling of an exotic pet.

Like a spider biting, external symptoms:

  • the presence of two wounds located in the immediate vicinity, or a continuous inflamed spot;
  • swelling;
  • redness;
  • edema;
  • Blisters on the skin filled with liquid inside around the inflamed area;
  • suppuration may appear in a few days.

Externally, spider bites often resemble stings of bees, wasps, hornets, and sometimes mosquitoes. It all depends on which species made the attack. A photo of a spider bite in humans is located below.

Spider bite

The penetration of pathogens into an open wound leads to severe inflammation, swelling, an increase in redness, suppuration, the appearance of ulcers, weeping eczema. A photo of a secondary infection skin lesion can be seen below.

Tools for fighting the spider

In addition to preventive measures in the fight against the brown recluse, more radical insecticides can be used.The latter are more than enough in specialized stores. One group is intended for domestic use, and the other – subject to licensing – for industrial use.

The best option is to contact specialists: to the public health services and private firms that provide similar services. If this is not possible, then you can use some household drugs.

Such chemistry has a negative effect not only on arthropods, but also on human health, so it must be used with extreme caution.Be sure to use protective equipment and isolate the room from people during disinfection.

The most effective insecticides, among others, which experts recommend in every possible way, are Tsiflutrin and Tsipermethrin. Both drugs belong to the group of pyrethroids (synthetic pesticides) and have proven themselves in the fight against the brown recluse. They, unlike past generations of insecticides, are less toxic and do not cause serious harm to humans.

Preparations are available both in powder and spray form.In the first case, the composition must be spread out around the perimeter of the room, as well as in all the supposed places of the appearance of the predator. Powders provide long-term drug activity. Sprays are used pointwise or directly on the spider.

Treatment with pesticides must be carried out in such a way that the product is in contact with as many pests and their networks as possible. Sprays can be sprayed on the outer perimeter of a residential building: ebb, cornices, decorative superstructures and other elements where a spider can hide.

Powders should be scattered into cracks, under skirting boards, furniture and other movable and immovable interior items. In difficult cases, disinfection must be repeated several times.

Spider bite – symptoms in humans

The development of general symptoms depends on how the spider bites, what species it belongs to, how much poison it injects. In most cases, people get off with discomfort, painful sensations on the skin, and some of the victims do not notice anything at all, the bite goes away on its own.

A huge role is played by the strength of immunity, the individual characteristics of the organism. However, in the event of a poisonous spider bite, even the strongest defensive reaction may not work. The effect of a toxic substance depends on qualitative, quantitative indicators. The spider bites once, rarely makes a second attack. After the first attack, he tries to quickly hide in a secluded place. The poison enters the bloodstream, spreads throughout the body, what the consequences will be, depends on the quality indicators, the mechanism of action of the toxic substance.

  • Neurotoxic poison affects the central nervous system, peripheral. It provokes muscle spasms, which disrupts the work of internal organs – the heart, lungs, stomach, brain, etc.
  • The spider’s hemolytic venom destroys red blood cells, leads to a change in the composition, quality of blood. The bite can cause internal bleeding.

Spiders in Russia are the owners of a neurotoxic substance. The consequences depend on the composition of the poison. With a potent substance, a deterioration in well-being is observed within 15 minutes after the incident.

  • weakness;
  • headache;
  • dizziness;
  • loss of consciousness;
  • nausea;
  • vomiting;
  • diarrhea;
  • difficulty breathing;
  • laryngeal edema;
  • shortness of breath, lack of oxygen;
  • limb tremor;
  • muscle pain;
  • profuse sweating;
  • violation of coordination of movement;
  • heart palpitations;
  • increase in blood pressure, body temperature;
  • pallor of the skin;
  • slowing down the heart rate.

Consequences of a bite
Without timely medical care, a person can die of suffocation or cardiac arrest.


The consequences of a spider bite are always more pronounced in children, the elderly, especially with reduced or pathologically weak immunity. In this case, even a bite of an ordinary cross can threaten a person’s life.


You can understand that a person was bitten by a spider, and not some other insect, by the following signs:

  1. at the puncture site appears a white speck with a red or pink border along edges.
  2. The damaged area is swollen, numb, and firm to the touch.
  3. The pain increases gradually, and does not burn, as, for example, when a wasp attack.
  4. There is a burning sensation, itching, which are first felt at the puncture site, and then spread throughout the body.

In severe cases, the following symptoms are observed:

  • upset stomach;
  • nausea;
  • vomiting;
  • weakness;
  • drowsiness;
  • body aches;
  • drooling;
  • sweating;
  • heat;
  • chills;
  • pressure surges;
  • dizziness;
  • fainting;
  • convulsions.

Spiders cannot physically attack multiple times. If a chain of successive punctures, numerous bite marks are found on the body, then most likely the person was attacked by another insect.

The listed symptoms are general, they combine all the characteristic signs of spider bites. Lesions may differ depending on the type of arthropod.

What spiders bite

Experts say that spiders that live in Russia do not attack themselves, do not rush to attack humans.They do not differ in an aggressive disposition, they prefer to quickly hide in a secluded place without unnecessary incidents. If the situation develops in such a way that the predator feels a threat to its own life, it bites, injects poison. Absolutely all arachnids bite, but the consequences are different.

Read also What to do in case of food poisoning? Symptoms and treatment at home

You can meet a predator at home. In the warm season, spiders settle in residential buildings, apartments, penetrate through open windows, doors, cracks in the wall.Small spiders hide in the corners during the day, behind furniture, at night they are active – weaving a web. The bite of a domestic spider is a rare, not dangerous phenomenon. Small children under 1 year old suffer, who showed excessive curiosity, were left without parental supervision. Home spiders are dangerous only for people with arachnophobia.

The most dangerous species of arachnids in Russia live in the wild, but in search of food, in the process of migration, they may end up in the possession of a person, in his home. Often, predators bite people in nature, after they quietly climbed into things, shoes, clothes.A bite is applied imperceptibly.

Why does the spider bite?

Contrary to the opinion of many people, unmotivated aggressive behavior is not characteristic of spiders. Sensing danger, predators, distinguished by a developed instinct of self-preservation, try to run away and hide. Only if they can’t escape, they save their lives.

As a rule, the person himself becomes the culprit of the attack, accidentally or deliberately threatening the life of the arthropod: trying to kill it, finding it on his clothes / skin, disturbing the habitat, and so on.It is important to understand that spiders biologically sense threat and defend themselves as best they can.

Dangerous spiders of our area

Due to global warming, dry summer, there is a migration of southern individuals to the northern regions. In Russia, poisonous creatures have become common, the bite of which leads to death if timely medical care is not provided.


The most dangerous spider in our area. The bite of a poisonous spider provokes instant pain, a local allergic reaction, after 15 minutes the general symptoms of poisoning, described in the section above, develop.

Medium-sized predator. The female reaches 2 cm, males – 70 mm. Long black legs, 13 red spots on the abdomen. With age, the color becomes more uniform, the spots disappear. Karakurt live in arid places, build burrows underground.

Karakurt and tarantula

South Russian tarantula

The most sold poisonous specimen of our area. A bite on the skin of a person causes an instant allergy, after 20 minutes, a deterioration in well-being is observed. Failure to provide timely medical care can result in death.Tarantulas are most dangerous for children.

The size of the female together with the leg span reaches 35 mm, the males are half as large. The color is beige, brown, white with dark stains.


A distinctive feature of the poisonous South Russian tarantula is its dark head. The limbs are long, powerful, the whole body is covered with hairs.


Exotic, bright creature with a memorable appearance. Other names are heiracantium, yellow. The predator is medium-sized sak, the female is about 1 cm, the males are even smaller.Legs, abdomen amber yellow, cephalothorax red or orange.


Strong jaws, chelicerae in the form of curved canines. Calmly bites through the nail plate of a person.

The animal is shy, does not differ in an aggressive disposition, if a yellow sak bit, it means that he had to defend his own life. There is an instant, burning pain, followed by redness and swelling. After a bite in children, people with weak immunity, a tendency to allergies, weakness, malaise, symptoms of intoxication appear.Medical attention is required.

Black fat head

A bite is dangerous with an allergic reaction of varying intensity. Refers to poisonous. Skin marks disappear within 2 weeks. General malaise is present for the first few days. Severe allergic reactions require medical attention. The bite of a red spider is not fatal.

The males have a bright color – the legs, the cephalothorax are black, velvety, the abdomen is red with four black spots. Females are larger in size – 1 cm, the whole body is black.

Spiders, whose bites are dangerous

Black widow, false black widow

Is the most poisonous creature on earth. Black widows belong to the karakurt family.


Poison is 15 times more potent than a rattlesnake bite. Life-threatening symptoms develop within 15 minutes. The introduction of a special substance is required to neutralize the poison. If a child is bitten by a spider, death can occur in half an hour.

The false black widow is slightly different in appearance, its poison is not so strong.Provokes allergies.

Remarkable appearance – black long legs, cephalothorax, abdomen with a glossy sheen. On the lower part there is a characteristic pattern in the form of a red hourglass; for false black widows, it is pink, white-brown.

Poisonous spiders also include wolves, crosses, hermits. They bite hard, but not fatally. In most cases, the consequences are limited to an allergic reaction.

Risk factors

Although these spiders do not bite people often, they pose a slightly greater risk to people working indoors.

Train drivers, cleaners and housekeepers may face even greater risks when working in areas where there is an increased likelihood of contact with spiders.

Living in the Midwest or Southeastern United States is the main risk of accidental encounters with this species of spider.


Despite its dire reputation, only about 10% of brown hermit spider bites result in serious skin complications.

There have been no documented deaths from the bite of a brown recluse spider.

What to do if bitten by a spider

It all depends on what kind of spider is bitten. If it is a small, non-venomous creature, first aid is sufficient. If the spider bites badly, an allergic reaction begins on the skin, local antihistamines are used. In the event of an attack by an unknown specimen, a general deterioration in health, you should immediately contact a specialist.

  • The bite of a domestic spider is treated with antibacterial, antiseptic drugs.The pain disappears within 24 hours, the skin recovers completely in a week.
  • Green spider bite is not dangerous. Symptoms are limited to local allergies.
  • If bitten by a white spider, you need to rinse the wound, treat with an antiseptic. If you have allergies, use an antihistamine ointment.

Read also Alcohol poisoning: symptoms, first aid, treatment

If spiders live at home as a pet, if handled carelessly, they can bite.Further actions depend on how poisonous the pet is.

Clinical manifestations

Tarantula venom includes a form of protein that is foreign to humans. As soon as it has entered the body, unpleasant sensations begin. The rate of development of the clinical picture depends on the age, sex of the victim, and the rate of metabolic processes. Symptoms include:

  • edema;
  • intense burning sensation;
  • marks from two punctures are visible on the skin surface;
  • bitten people experience pain from 1 to 5 hours;
  • if the victim has hypersensitivity, then the discomfort lasts more than 24 hours;
  • temperature rise rarely occurs;
  • after 2 hours, the skin at the site of injury becomes yellowish;
  • redness.

First aid for a spider bite

The initial task is to wash off the remains of the poison, prevent it from spreading through the blood, and reduce the symptoms of an allergic reaction. The choice of first aid depends on the location where the event took place. If a spider has bitten at home or in the immediate vicinity, you can use a home first-aid kit; in the wild, materials at hand are used.

First aid for bite

  1. The bite needs to be rinsed out. Use running water, mineral, spring.At home, you need to use laundry soap.
  2. Disinfect the wound after the bite. They use folk remedies, alcohol tincture, hydrogen peroxide, menovazine solution, ammonia, etc.
  3. If the bite hurts badly, swelling appears, apply a cold object, a compress, ice cubes wrapped in gauze.

In order to prevent the spread of poison through the blood after the bite of a poisonous predator, a tourniquet is applied over the wound or a bandage is made from a bandage, improvised materials.


It is impossible to squeeze out the poison, since this procedure promotes the spread of a toxic substance through the blood, the risk of developing a secondary infection, death of cells around the affected area increases.

When to see a doctor

People should see a doctor for any painful, red, emaciated or improperly healing wound.

If a brown recluse spider is confirmed to be the cause, a doctor may recommend a tetanus shot if the person has not received it in the past 5 years.The doctor may also check the wound 2-3 days after the bite to make sure the venom is not destroying tissue. Treatment can begin quickly if any problems arise. This reduces the risk of further complications.


There are many other diseases that can lead to severe injuries, similar to the bites of brown recluse spiders. These conditions include tick bites, infections from bacteria, viruses and fungi, diabetes, and other skin conditions.

Unless a person lives in an area where brown recluse spiders are known to live and have caught a spider for proper identification, the cause of injury should not be blamed on the bite of a brown recluse spider.

First aid for bites

At the slightest suspicion of a poisonous spider bite, you should call an ambulance and provide the victim with first aid. First of all, it is necessary to wash off the remnants of a toxic substance, slow down the spread of poison in the bloodstream, and stop the symptoms of an allergic reaction. The choice of first aid equipment depends on where the attack occurred. If at home, a home first aid kit will do, if outdoors, you will have to use materials at hand. So:

  1. Thoroughly rinse the bite from the remains of the poison with running, mineral or spring water.Use laundry soap at home.
  2. Disinfect the wound with alcohol, ammonia, hydrogen peroxide, vodka or any alcoholic infusion. Attention! It is categorically impossible to comb the wound, since this can accelerate the spread of the poison throughout the body.
  3. In case of severe local reaction, apply any cold object, compress, ice cubes wrapped in gauze to the inflamed wound.
  4. Give the victim an antihistamine to reduce allergic reactions.
  5. If an arm or leg is injured, a tourniquet or tight bandage should be applied above the bite. This is necessary in order to slow down the blood flow and the spread of the poison throughout the body.
  6. Give the victim more fluid so that the kidneys quickly remove the poison from the body.
  7. In case of severe pain, give the victim an anesthetic.

Remember! If a predator has bitten on the neck, face or mucous membrane – the slightest delay can cost the victim his life.

Response to a spider bite

Anxiety can accelerate the spread of toxic substances, which means it is important to stay calm. Then you need to carefully consider the site of the bite. If it is slightly reddened, but the characteristic wounds-points are absent, the attack was made by a harmless spider (most likely, medical attention will not be required).

Folk remedies for the bite

What to do if a spider bite happened far from civilization, when you cannot reach the nearest settlement in a couple of days?

To relieve unpleasant symptoms and speed up wound healing, you can use traditional medicine methods:

  1. Rinse the affected area with a solution – 1 teaspoon of vinegar in a glass of water.
  2. Dilute baking soda with water to a mushy state and apply to the inflamed area.
  3. Wipe clean with lemon juice.
  4. Apply shaving foam for 5 minutes and rinse with cold water.
  5. Apply aloe leaves.

Attention! Any folk remedy, especially herbal remedy, can provoke an allergic reaction and aggravate the victim’s condition. Therefore, it is better for allergy sufferers to refrain from such experiments.

After reviewing the presented review, many will ask the question: is it possible to avoid a spider bite? To minimize the likelihood of an attack, it is enough to adhere to some recommendations:

  1. Do not try to catch or hit an arthropod.
  2. Keeping your home clean, not bypassing the most secret corners.
  3. Once in nature, check shoes and clothes, and keep sleeping bags and tents closed.
  4. Going out of town, stock up on deterrent sprays and creams.
  5. In summer, close doors tightly, equip windows with mosquito nets.

In most cases, everything is limited to a local reaction that goes away within a few days. Although no one is immune from a meeting with a dangerous individual.In order to timely and competently respond to the consequences of a bite, it is important to equip a home first-aid kit with everything you need, and when going into nature, take with you an “alarming suitcase”.


A person with a brown recluse spider bite has an excellent chance of recovery, especially with proper care, as most bites do not require special treatment or healing on their own.

In most cases, minor bite wounds heal completely within a week or so.

People with other medical conditions, such as diabetes or problems with the immune system, are at a higher risk of complications. These people are also at increased risk for a wide range of skin infections and other skin problems. However, it is especially important that they see a doctor in the event of an actual or suspected brown spider bite within 24 hours if there is a reaction. Any wound that does not heal properly should be assessed, regardless of the cause.

Folk remedies for a bite

To eliminate unpleasant symptoms, accelerate the healing of the epidermis, use:

  • Vinegar solution.For a glass of water 1 teaspoon of the product. Treat the bite site.
  • Baking soda paste. Dilute with water to a state of gruel.
  • Juice of lemon, orange, cucumber, onion, parsley, potatoes, as well as dandelion, plantain, celandine.
  • Toothpaste, shaving foam. Apply to the bite site for 5 minutes, rinse off.
  • Aloe vera leaves or juice.

Used for minor manifestations of allergies or as an adjuvant.

Treatment of a spider bite in humans with medicines

To stop the pathological process, to neutralize the effect of the poison, local, systemic antihistamines are used.

Tablets for allergies

Tablets, drops for allergies:

  • Suprastin;
  • Claritin;
  • El-tset;
  • Eden;
  • Diazolin;
  • Tavegil;
  • Zodak;
  • Loratadine;
  • Diphenhydramine.

In case of a sharp deterioration in health with difficulty breathing, arrhythmia, increased blood pressure, it is prohibited to treat the bite on your own. For the antidote, doctors inject a special serum or a combination of several drugs of different effects.

Preparations for the treatment of the skin with a bite:

  • Fenistil-Gel;
  • Psilo-Balm;
  • Advantan;
  • Betamethasone;
  • Elokom;
  • Dermovate.

You can use any cream, ointment with antiallergic, antihistamine effect. With a slight manifestation of allergies, use the Asterisk balm, Calendula ointment, Menovazin, Bepanten cream. The bite is processed 1-4 times a day.


If spiders attacked, abscesses appear after the bite, you need to see a dermatologist, allergist.Treatment will be prescribed by a specialist. In the presence of abscesses, ulcers, therapy is carried out with local antibiotics or combined means – Elokom S, Tetracycline ointment, Levomekol, etc. If a spider has bitten in the neck, you need to immediately go to the hospital without waiting for the appearance of alarming symptoms. The body’s response can be unpredictable.

According to the International Classification of Diseases – ICD 10, poisonous spider bites, their consequences, treatment are considered in section T63.3. The deadly poisonous spiders in our area include 2 species – karakurt, tarantula.

Tarantula bite: possible complications

In rare cases, in the presence of predisposing factors, a tarantula bite can cause serious consequences for a person. The toxin has a neurogenic effect on the central and peripheral nervous systems, can lead to neuromuscular disorders, failures in the cardiovascular and respiratory systems. First of all, the central nervous system is excited, its exhaustion occurs.

The main complications of a bite can be:

  • long-term non-healing wound;
  • various dermatological pathologies;
  • Failures of the neuromuscular function.

In people with irregularities in the work of the heart and respiration, the existing disturbances are exacerbated.

Many do not know whether a tarantula bite is fatal to humans. Acute allergic reactions lead to bronchospasm, anaphylactic shock and can be fatal.

Spider bites – a directory of diseases – HealthInfo

The bite of a black widow spider (karakurt) usually causes sharp pain, as if pricked with a needle, followed by a feeling of numbness; sometimes pain appears in the area around the bite. In addition, spastic pain and stiffness in the muscles of the abdomen, shoulders, back or chest develops, which can be very pronounced. Characterized by a sharp tension of the abdominal muscles, dilated pupils, urinary retention, defecation. Other possible symptoms are anxiety, anxiety, increased sweating, headaches, dizziness, drooping and swelling of the eyelids, skin rashes and itching, nausea, vomiting, increased salivation, and general weakness.The skin around the bite site may feel hot to the touch. In severe cases, excitement, delirium, spasm of the bronchi with difficulty breathing are possible.

A brown recluse bite may be painless at first, but for an hour or more, pain of greater or lesser intensity appears around the bite site, sometimes quite pronounced and extending to the entire damaged area. The skin around the wound turns red, hemorrhage occurs, itching is possible, sometimes generalized. At the site of the bite, a bubble is formed, surrounded either by an irregularly shaped hemorrhage zone, or by a zone of redness with sharper boundaries, in appearance resembling a target.The bite site is sometimes compared to a bull’s eye. Then the bubble enlarges, fills with blood, and bursts; an open ulcer is formed, after the healing of which a large scar in the form of a crater often remains. The victim has nausea, vomiting, pain, fatigue, chills, increased sweating; the composition of the blood changes; renal failure develops. However, death occurs only in rare cases.

Tarantula – large spider, up to 35 mm long, covered with thick hair; color from reddish to almost black.It lives in deep vertical burrows, more often in sandy soils. At the time of the tarantula bite, there is a sharp soreness. The bite sites are well distinguishable, separated from each other by a few millimeters (5-15 mm). Soon the bite site turns red and swells, in some cases significantly. Unlike a karakurt bite, the pain is localized and does not spread throughout the body. The pain persists throughout the day, gradually subsiding. The victim has lethargy, drowsiness, sometimes sharp sweating, palpitations.Fatalities are unlikely and may be associated not so much with the action of the poison as with severe allergic reactions.

12 types and what to do with each of them. / State Budgetary Institution of Health of the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug “Labytnangskaya City Hospital”

Insect bites: 12 species and what to do with each of them.
Insect Bites do not look the same. How to determine who bit you? In this article, you will learn about 12 of the most common insect bites you may experience.Be careful! In the summer, when families go out of town on vacation, to summer cottages or picnics near the lake, the risk of getting unwanted bites from various insects increases. Some pass quickly, and with especially severe bites, you should immediately contact a doctor. We suggest reading about the 12 most common bites that you may experience while outing in the city or abroad on an exotic vacation. Insect bites: how to distinguish and what to do 12 types of different insect bites.Tick ​​Mosquito Wasp Bee Hornet Flea Ginger ant Lice Blindfuck Bug Deer fly (golden-eyed) Hermit spider
1. Tick. The forest tick is the most dangerous for humans, since it is a carrier of dangerous diseases. The oral apparatus of the parasite is designed in such a way that it makes it possible to deeply and firmly adhere to the skin. At the same time, a person will not experience pain and may find a tick on his body even after a few days. It may turn out that the tick bit you and fell off. Then, at the site of the bite, there will be a red spot with a circle of several centimeters, and in the center there will be a black or red dot.In this case, you should immediately consult a doctor.
2. Mosquito. Visually, mosquito bites look like pink papules with circular outlines, drops on the skin. If the bite is combed, it will turn red because the mosquito’s saliva will enter the surrounding tissues, which will intensify the reaction. There are cases when an allergic reaction with edema appears at the site of the bite.
3. Wasp. The wasp sting is very painful. A burning sensation is felt in its place, it swells and turns red. Occasionally, a wasp sting will cause headaches, fever, and a rash all over the body.
4. Bee. Having stung, the bee dies. This is because, along with the sting, she leaves her digestive tract. Therefore, it is quite easy to recognize a bee sting. It is necessary to urgently remove the sting so that the poison does not enter the bloodstream. Bee sting is the second most common cause of anaphylaxis. If you have shortness of breath, decreased pressure, or breathing problems, call an ambulance.
5. Hornet. The insect pierces the skin like a bee, however, the sting does not leave in the wound. The bite site swells, turns red, and sharp pain appears.Among the symptoms of a hornet bite: rapid heart rate, nausea, vomiting, cold limbs, bluish tinge to the lips, ears and neck. Loss of consciousness is not excluded. Young children and adults with weakened immune systems are very painful to tolerate a hornet bite. If symptoms appear, you should immediately consult a doctor.
6. Flea. The bites of these insects are most often observed on the legs. The flea may bite repeatedly. The bites appear as small red dots. If you comb them, they heal for a long time, and dark spots remain at the site of the bites for a long time.
7. Red ant. When bitten, the insect releases a toxin that causes an allergic reaction. The affected areas are visually similar to flea bites, but the sting of an ant causes instant sharp pain.