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16 Black Widow Spider Facts for Kids

navajocodetalkersadmin on January 15, 2015 - 4:00 pm in Fun Facts for Kids

The Black Widow spider has a pretty bad reputation. No one wants to encounter one, even the people that do not mind spiders so much will do their best to avoid the black widow spider. The black widow spider is the most poisonous spider in North America bu only the female is poisonous.

1. The black widow like all spiders is not an insect it is an arachnid. They only have two body sections while insects have three.

2. You can easily recognize a black widow spider by the red hour glass shape under her abdomen. Her black shiny body and the red hour glass shaped marking sort of lends a bit more ferocity to her look. There are a total of five different species of black widow spider! They do not all have that discernible hour glass mark on their abdomen.

3. They lay eggs at the rate of about 400 eggs per egg sack. The silk that is used to spin her webs and create her egg sack is the strongest of all silks.

The Reputation

4. The Black Widow is a poisonous spider that can inflict a nasty bite but her name comes from the mistaken belief that she always eats her mate. While she may mistake him for a meal and eat him she does not set out to eat her mate, it just kind of happens sometimes.

5. This spider is not aggressive spider as a matter of fact they are considered reclusive spiders which means they prefer to be left alone. They live alone and spend their days busying themselves with spinning webs and finding food. They do not actively look for people to bite.

6.They will bite when threatened. Most of the time a black widow bite occurs on the foot or the fingers when someone has mistakenly stuck their foot in a shoe that contains the black widow. In other words they will not look for trouble but if you bring trouble to them they are very prepared to deal with you.

Where Do They Live?

7. To add to the creepy factor black widow spiders like to live in dark places like in the back of your closet or buried in your shoe! In the outdoors they will live in hollowed out logs or under leaves and brush. They also will live in any space that is dark indoors or outdoors.

What Do They Eat?

8. Black widow spiders are predators they like to eat insects and anything else that can get caught in their web. Like all spiders they eat their prey from the inside out. They catch their prey in a flat spider web. They wrap it up for later and fix the web where the prey was captured.

9. They suck out the inside of the prey and eat all the internal organs and blood than they move on to the next meal.

10. They prefer to eat small insects with soft bodies.

Fun Facts

11. The poison from a black widow is about fifteen times more potent that the venom from a rattle snake. They have their own predators to look out for. The praying mantis simply loves the taste of a black widow and will dine on them whenever they can.

12. They are also preyed upon by a specific type of wasp that will sting them to paralyze the spider so that they can eat them. There is another type of wasp that will use the black widow as a surrogate for its larvae. They sting the spider so that it is paralyzed then the deposit their larvae. The larvae eats the black widow from the inside out.

13. There are also some birds that have a taste for the black widow however if the bird is not well equipped to handle the venom from the spider and will get a belly ache.

14. Most people easily survive the bite of a black widow, children are most susceptible to the toxins. They can live up to three years.

15. Not all black widows have the hour glass marking in red, some are in white, some do not have any marking so any black shiny spider should be avoided.

16. They are nocturnal creatures which means that they sleep during the day and they are up all night. Out of the 400 eggs that the black widow lays only a small percentage will survive. They do lay eggs a couple of times a year but typically one black widow will only be mother to about 100 spiders in all.

Things to Remember About the Black Widow

  • They do not attack if you respect their space they will respect yours.
  • Check shoes and jackets, especially if they have been outside over night to insure that you do not have any unwelcome guests lurking around.
  • Avoid black shiny spiders just to be on the safe side.
  • If you are bit get to the doctors, the sooner treatment starts for the bite the more successful the treatment will be.
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