How to Identify Dangerous Spiders in Indiana

How to Identify Dangerous Spiders in Indiana
In Indiana, there are just two venomous spiders that have the ability to cause great harm to a human being. These are the black widow and the brown recluse, which is also commonly referred to as the "fiddleback spider." These two spider species rarely interact with people, but when they do, people need to give them a wide berth.


Difficulty: Moderately Challenging

Step 1
Check the color and shape. The female black widow has a sleek, dark black, spherical abdomen (the female is venomous, not the male). A brown recluse will be brown, with the oval abdomen darker than the legs.
Step 2
Look for markings. The black widow has an hourglass-shaped marking on the underside of its abdomen. The two triangles that join to form this shape are typically red but also can be yellowish or orange. The brown recluse spider has a pattern on its head that resembles a violin. The base of this "fiddle" is close to the very top of the head and the tapered end extends toward the back.
Step 3
Consider the spider's size. The black widow's body is a half-inch in diameter, but when you factor in her legs, she may be as large as an inch-and-a-half. The brown recluse is a small spider, rarely bigger than a half-inch.
Step 4
Know where to find them. The black widow will normally be where it will not be bothered, hiding under rocks and old woodpiles. The brown recluse will frequent old clothes that have not been worn for quite awhile as well as sheds, barns and other places where it will not be disturbed.

Tips & Warnings

The brown recluse has three pairs of eyes rather than the typical four that most spiders have, but if you can make this distinction you are way too close to it.

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