“Can you come over right now, I have a Tarantula in my closet?” said one of my customers. Many people who call me, “Spiderman” are dealing with arachnophobia which is a dreadful fear of spiders. Part of overcoming this is understanding some of the facts about spiders.
There are over 3500 species of spiders in Kansas, yet only two are poisonous. They are the Brown Recluse Spider and the Black Widow Spider. Many of the household spiders like the Wolf Spider will eat the Brown Recluse Spider, thus are like defenders of your castle “Home.” Understanding a little about them can help calm the fears of someone terrified of spiders.
The Brown Recluse Spider can live 18-24 months and prefers to live in areas of a home that are secluded. Thus the name “Recluse.” They molt, shed their exoskeleton, five times before they are fully grown, and only get about as big as a fifty cent piece. So, the “Tarantula” my customer referred to was actually not a poisonous Brown Recluse Spider, but a non poisonous spider that was helping them control the poisonous ones. They usually come out at night and hunt for their food . The Brown Recluse Spider will eat dead or alive insects and sometimes even other Brown Recluse Spiders. Many people think the best way to identify them is the “Violin shaped” marking on top of them. While this can be helpful it is not always seen, especially on the young spiderlings.
A lot of people ask me if I have ever been bit, and I have not. The best thing to do for those who suspect they have been bitten would be to try and find the spider, elevate the area, apply ice, and go to the doctor. There are many misdiagnosed bites because they do resemble other things like staff infections etc. So, have the spider will help eliminate other possibilities. Applying the ice will slow the spreading of venom in ones body. These are some important tips in preventing Brown Recluse Spider bites.
Read about our Brown Recluse Treatment.