Learn the differences between a brown recluse and brown widow spider in Virginia - Ehrlich Pest Control, formerly Connor's.

While most types of spiders are typically harmless, two are known to be threats in the Northern Virginia area: brown widows and brown recluses. It is important for residents to be familiar with what these spiders look like, their behaviors and the correct plan of action that should be taken when a person suffers a bite. Thankfully, bites from these spiders are rare and only occur when the spider is directly threatened. Nonetheless, it’s important to know the differences between the brown recluse vs. brown widow spider.

All about the brown recluse spider

Most brown recluse spiders are a dull brown color. The body of an adult can grow up to about 11 mm in length, and they are approximately the size of a quarter, including their legs. A common nickname for the brown recluse is the fiddle-back spider because of the violin-shaped mark on the cephalothorax. Spotting this mark is the best way of making a positive identification of a brown recluse spider, although few people want to get close enough to check for this mark. Although these spiders are not outwardly aggressive and don’t bite unless threatened, some of the dangers of the brown recluse spider include:

  • The types of symptoms that a person may experience will depend upon the location of the bite and the amount of venom that is injected with the bite.
  • Most bites actually heal in very little time and result in only minimal damage, but when a bite is serious, it can result in blisters, necrosis, and serious pain.

What to know about brown widows

Though called the brown widow, this spider can range in color. Some are a solid brown color, while others could be a patchy or mottled brown, tan, or even white. A good identifying mark for a brown widow female is the orange hourglass shape that appears on the underside of their abdomen, and the black and brown striped legs. Though not quite as dangerous as its relative the black widow, the brown widow can pose a significant threat to human health:

  • If someone is bitten by a brown widow, most of the symptoms will be centered on the location of the bite and it can be quite painful.
  • Some of the additional symptoms may include headache, muscle pain, lethargy, sweating, nausea, and shortness of breath.

Professional brown recluse and brown widow control

While most people never suffer a bite from a venomous spider, they are more common than many would think. If you believe that your home or property has a significant problem with venomous spiders and you need to determine whether you’re dealing with a brown recluse vs. brown widow spider, it’s time to call Ehrlich Pest Control, formerly Connor’s. Our team can help keep you and your family safe from these potentially dangerous spiders year-round; call us today to find out how!

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Brown Recluse vs. Brown Widow Spider in Virginia

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