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Things You should Know about Brown Recluse Spiders

The brown recluse spider is a venomous yet non-dangerous species of spider. This story provides some facts about this arachnid.
Madhavi Ghare
The brown recluse spider, or the Loxosceles Reclusa, is a member of the Sicariidae family of spiders. It is also referred to as the American Recluse Spider, and the Violin Spider or Fiddleback Spider. It is found all through south-central and midwestern US.

How to Recognize One

This spider is between 6 millimeters to 20 millimeters (¼ to ¾ inches) long, and can even grow longer. It is light-tan to brown in color, and can sometimes be deep-yellow. It has peculiar markings on its body. There is a black line running down the center of its back, which looks like a violin, with its narrower end pointing to the back end of the spider.

Where It Is Found

This spider can be found in sheds, woodpiles, closets, cellars, and garages. It prefers places which are dry and undisturbed for a long time. It even prefers cardboard and is known to go into shoes, bed sheets, dressers, stacks of clothes, behind picture frames, or anything that has not been used for a long time.
This species weaves irregular webs consisting of disorderly threads. It leaves its web at night to hunt. Although the males move out more during the hunting period, females prefer to stay nearer to their webs.

Bite and Treatment

This spider only bites humans when it feels threatened. When it is residing within stacks of clothes and is pressed to the human skin, it can feel threatened and bite the human. Although the bite may contain venom, the poison is not life-threatening. However, for people with low immunity, it can prove to be fatal.
The bite of a brown recluse begins to itch and pain within 2 to 8 hours. The tissue around the bite may become large and may scar. There can also be symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, rashes, fever, and muscle and joint pain.
The first aid treatment for the bite of this spider includes the following.
  • Application of an ice pack on the area of the bite.
  • Tying a piece of cloth along the limb to ensure that the venom does not travel to the rest of the body.
  • Application of aloe vera to soothe the pain.
  • Calling the doctor for further medical treatment.
The medical treatment usually ensures that the symptoms are treated and the wound is disinfected and cared for.
The brown recluse is a unique and different spider species. Like almost all animals, it will attack only if it feels threatened, and not unnecessarily.