The false widow spider is making headlines across the country including here in Plymouth as its presence forces the closure of many schools. Of course, given that it is spider season, if ever there was a time to see one it’s now. But how do you spot a false widow from other spiders without getting up close and personal and what do you do if you find one in your Plymouth home?
The false widow spider can often be mistaken with its deadly distant cousin, the black widow. There is no need to panic, it is nowhere near as dangerous although it can bite and it carries a milder venom. It is thought to have been introduced into southern parts of the UK in bananas and have since taken up residence here and continued to multiply in numbers. As we have seen with many insects this year, there seems to be an apparent abundance of them. The sightings first started in the south in areas like Torquay and Plymouth and they have since made their way north across the country.
Whether you are afraid of spiders or not, you should be wary of the false widow. As well as being a spider that will give you a fright if you see it scuttling across the shower, you should be aware that it is venomous and that it does bite. Much like a bee or wasp sting, a Plymouth false widow spider bite will cause localised pain and minor swelling. In some cases, it can cause nausea and, if not treated it can lead to an infection much like gangrene. Now a bite isn’t a cause to rush to the doctors. The good news is that you can simply wash the area with soap and water and then use an antiseptic on the bite to prevent infection.
This unmistakable spider, much like any spider, will make its home in warm and dark areas. You will find them hiding in dark corners, around window frames, in sheds and garages or the normal places where you would find spiders. They have a brown abdomen with distinctive white markings on their back. If you spot one or believe that you may have more than one, give us a call. As local Plymouth pest control experts, we are happy to come and help you to get rid of these unwanted arachnids. Give us a call on 01752 929292.