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  • The golden silk spider wraps its prey (insects) in silk thereby immobilizing it Read More
  • The jumping spider can jump a distance of more than 30 times its own length
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  • The funnel web spider is very aggressive, and its bite can cause death within 15 minutes
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  • The bird spider are tarantulas. They live in Asia and China
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  • Fear of spiders has been a natural part of human evolution. Learn the basics about fear of spiders.
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  • The brown recluse spider is a solitary creature that seeks and prefers loneliness in shelters and small crevices.
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  • The hobo spider is sometimes referred to as the aggressive house spider. It is not aggressive at all
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  • Females are double the size of males. They don’t eat males unless no other food is available
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  • Learn about spiders so big that they can capture, kill and eat birds.
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  • Wolf spider females carry their egg sacs with them. When new spiderlings hatch, they can stay with their mother on her back
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  • Learn what to look out for if you are bitten by a spider, and when to seek help
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  • Camel spiders are not spiders. When approached it will make a hissing warning sound
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  • Brazilian wandering spiders hunt on the ground during the night - no web is needed
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  • Tarantulas are nocturnal animals. They can grow very large and are often shown at exhibitions
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  • See a video of a wolf spider with its eyes glowing in the dark - plus many other videos
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  • 4-5 times as many people are killed by horses than spider bites in the US.
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  • Brown widow spiders live at the east coast in the USA - they have a beautiful hourglass as coloration
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About

Drawings are ©www.venomousspiders.net

Brown Recluse Spider

By Anders Nielsen, Ph.d.

The brown recluse spider belongs to a group of spiders known as the recluse spiders. Eleven different species are native to the United States; most are found in the central and Midwestern parts of the country. The spider is also referred to as the violin spider, or fiddleback spider, due to a marking on its back. Its Latin name is Loxosceles Reclusa.

Appearance

Loxosceles reclusa have six eyes arranged in pairs. The abdomen is uniformly colored and ranges from light brown to dark brown. The abdomen and the thin, long legs are covered with numerous fine hairs. Spiderlings of the brown recluse spider can be distinguished from adults by their coloring, which is often lighter.

Topic: Golden Silk S.
Red Back Jumping S.

Habitat

The name reclusa refers to its habits. It is a solitary creature that seeks and prefers loneliness in shelters and small crevices. Indoors, they may be found in attics, basements, crawl spaces, cellars, closets, and ductwork or registers.

Topic: Yellow Sac S.
Are spiders insects?

They may seek shelter in storage boxes, shoes, clothing, folded linens, and behind furniture. They also may be found in outbuildings, such as barns, storage sheds, and garages. Outdoors, brown recluse spiders may be found underneath logs, loose stones in rock piles, and stacks of lumber.

Topic: Jumping S.
Funnel Web S.

Brown recluse spiders generally occupy dark, undisturbed sites, and they can be found both indoors or outdoors. In favorable habitats, their populations are usually dense. They thrive in human-altered environments. Males are slightly smaller than females, but males have longer legs than females.

Topic: Bird Spider
Most dangerous S.

Venom

The brown recluse spider can be one of the most venomous spiders in the world. Wounds from a brown recluse spider are severe in some cases. On the page about spider bites, some examples are listed, including pictures (warning—some of them aren't nice).

Topic: Worlds Biggest S.
Wolf Spiders

Brown Recluse Spiders in California

It should be noted that it isa popular belief that there is no population of the brown recluse spider in California. This may have changed in the last couple of years. However, in California it is definitely not like in Tennessee, where the spider is very common and 15-25 percent of all spider bites are from this feared spider.

Unlike in California, people from Tennessee actually bring the spider to their doctor when bitten. Somehow this never happens in California.

Topic: Brazilian Wandering S.
Tarantula Spiders

Life Cycle

Spiderlings hatch from eggs that were laid from May to July. Eggs are encased in a white silken sac. There are approximately 50 eggs in each egg sac. The spiderlings emergeafter one month. It takes one year before a spiderling can be considered an adult. It takes a spider about eleven month to reach the adult stage from the time of hatching, and adult brown recluse spiders often live about one to two years. Each female produces several egg sacs over a period of two to three months.

Topic: Hobo Spider
Black Widow S.

The brown recluse spider is resistant to long periods without food. It can tolerate up to 6 months of extreme drought and scarcity of food.

Topic: Spider Bites
Camel Spider

The Ecology of the Brown Recluse Spider

The web of a brown recluse spider is very irregular and sticky. The web functions as a day time retreat. Since it is a very timid spider, the web is often produced in undisturbed corners, near garbage, etc. The brown recluse spider is a scavenger. A scavenger refers to an animal that consumes organic material that is already dead. As a scavenger, the brown recluse spider serves a useful role in breaking down dead animal and/or plant remains.

Topic: Venom
Brown Widow Spiders

Effect of a Bite From a Brown Recluse

Some people are unaffected by a bite, whereas others experience immediate or delayed effects as the venom kills the tissues (necrosis). It is not aggressive, and it only bites when handled or disturbed. The effect of a bite depends on the amount of venom injected. Since 1956 no one has died from a bite from a brown recluse spider.

Topic: Spider Videos
Spider Webs

Rarely, bite-victims experience reactions, including restlessness, itching, fever, chills, nausea, vomiting, and shock.

Usually, a small white blister initially arises at the bite site surrounded by a swollen area. The affected area enlarges and becomes red, and the tissue is hard to the touch for some time.

The bite of the brown recluse spider can result in a painful, deep wound that takes a long time to heal. Fatalities are rare, but bites are most dangerous to young children, the elderly, and those in poor physical condition. Perhaps the most dangerous part of the bite is the onset of bacterial attacks at the wound site.

If bitten, seek medical attention immediately, even though effective antivenin is not available.

A brown recluse spider

Resources About the Brown Recluse Spider on the Internet

These sources on the Internet are recommended if you want to know more about the fiddleback spider.

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Topic: Spider Pictures
Yellow Garden S.
Topic: Arachnophobia
Brown Recluse S.