Are black widows deadly?
Today, a lot of people know about black widows because they’re notorious for being deadly.
They get their name from the fact that females eat their mates during or after mating.
Black widows are also one of few species that will devour other spiders if they can.
What Makes a Black Widow Dangerous?
When black widows are born, they have toxic venom that can guarantee them a meal for their first meal.
However, they only eat insects and will not be poisonous to humans unless bitten.
Black widows are more dangerous because of the apparent warning signs of red hourglass patterns on their backs, but what many people don’t realize is that these markings can also be yellow and orange.
Many people will look at this information and assume that black widows are deadly, but in most cases, it’s just an assumption.
While black widows do inject venom when they bite, it’s not enough to kill an adult human.
However, the danger lies in the fact that their venom is neurotoxic and very painful.
It also contains a chemical known as latrotoxin which causes intense muscle pain and spasms.
Be sure not to confuse black widows with brown recluses.
Brown recluses are venomous, but not deadly to an adult human.
What To Do When Bitten By a Black Widow?
If you get bitten by a black widow, the best course of action is to head straight to a hospital.
Avoid anti-venom if it’s offered, as there have been cases of people dying from the antibodies present in the anti-venom.
Instead, the victim should try to relax and take painkillers if possible.
Full recovery can take anywhere from three days to two weeks.
As for whether or not they’re deadly, most people can recover from a black widow bite if they receive proper medical care in time.
For this reason, they are considered non-deadly under the medical definition of the term.
But, there have been rare cases wherein black widows have taken down not only their prey but also humans.
In that sense, black widows are little critters you should be wary of.
Check out our other animal FAQs here: