Northern Black Widow [Latrodectus variolus] Spider Bite

Northern Black Widow [Latrodectus variolus] Spider Bite

Black Widow Spider common name of Latrodectus genus and contains 31 recognized species. L. variolus known as Northern Widow or Northern Black Widow. It’s venom is 15 times stronger than rattlesnake. L. variolus most resemble to Southern Black Widow.

Latrodectus genus broadly distributed and contain 31 species from which 5-6 species are common. Black Widow Spider name due to strong belief that Female black widow eat male after mating. Northern Widow dotted with large red circles on dorsal. Split or broken red hourglass clearly visible on lower side of abdomen. Separation between hourglass part (top or bottom) is important.

Northern Black Widow Spider also called Cobweb Spider, Comb footed spider, Gumfoot web spider. L. variolus has been sighted 25 times outdoors and 2 times indoors. Also L. variolus spider sighted in United States.

Northern Black Widow Spider

Mature females of this species red or orange hourglass shaped marking at lower abdomen. Male spider retain red spot on top side of abdomen. Northern widow spices have larger male than L. hesperus and L. mactans. Glossy black abdomen of Northern Widow Spider female ar venomous and only females harmful.

Northern Widow Spider Facts – L. variolus abdomen dotted with large circle on back side. It clearly visible on ventral side.

Northern Black Widow
Northern Black Widow

Mortality from a bite by Northern Black Widow is about 1% of victim. Most of the fatalities being small children.

Bite victim feel immediate pain, increase intensity after sometimes. Other symptom – Sweating, fever, nausea, rapid heart rate, weakness and discomfort.

Spiders tangled, messy web. They not aggressive and does not seek to bite people.

Northern Black Widow Habitat – L. variolus common species in northern part of its range (Eastern North America). They can 100-400 eggs. Northern Widow Spider live in woodlands, stone, woodpiles. Also in undisturbed corner of shed, grapes and shelters.

Latrodectus variolus

They normally shy or prefer to hide, It bites in defense or when undisturbed. Northern Widow Spiders normally active in dark place, less likely seen during daytime.

Kingdom Animalia
Phylum Arthropoda
Class Arachnida
Oder Araneae
Family Theridiidae
Genus Latrodectus
Species L. variolus

It commonly found in middle atlantic states (New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland) of US. Mating season – April to May of every year and they prefer warm weather than cold weather.

Northern Black Widow Spider Life Cycle & Lifespan 

Egg sac are white, tan or greyish spherical & hung in the female’s web. Sometime sac also pear shaped and contain 100-400 eggs.

Northern Widow Spider Size – Female approx 0.9 to 1 cm (only body length not included legs). Male approx half the size of female (4-5 mm).

Female – Range of L. variolus significantly overlaps range of L. mactans. But female of L. variolus differ from female of L. mactans by type of hourglass marking on abdomen. Northern Female Widow Spider hourglass broken with row of red spots. Abdomen shiny black in color.

Northern Widow Spider’s Web – three dimensional, unorganized mass of silk. It mainly in dark crevice or corner. Web is very strong and sticky in nature.

Northern Widow Spider Bite

Latrodectus variolus commonly known as Northern Black Widow Spider (male/female). They generally not aggressive and try to hide in dark place. It only bite in defense and undisturbed. Northern Widow spider release neurotoxin when bite. It directly act on Central Nervous System of victim. Due to that blockage of transmission of nervous impulses.

L. variolus release highly toxic (very minute) venom by using fangs. Health problem depends upon condition of victim. Severity may high in Children, elder persons or people which have weak immune system.

Northern Black Widow Spider Symptoms & reaction 

immediate pain, increase intensity after sometimes. Other symptom – Sweating, fever, nausea, rapid heart rate, weakness and discomfort.

Treatment or precaution – Contact your doctor or poison center and follow all instructions properly. Try to kept spider to identified.

About РLatrodectus hesperus 

Overview – Latrodectus variolus slightly smaller than L mactans and L. hesperus. Also not quite dangerous or venomous as like others. But it not means to be messed with

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