The black widow spider

Species of black widows The black widow's comb foot is a distinguishing feature. Although these bites are generally not life-threatening for healthy adults, medical attention should always be sought following a black widow bite — particularly for children and the elderly.

There may be four to nine egg sacs produced during a summer. The largest population in Canada is found in Ontario. It takes 2 to 4 months for black widow spiders to mature enough to breed, however full maturation typically takes 6 to 9 months.

In some cases, females kill and eat their partner after mating.

black widow spider facts

Rarely do more than spiderlings survive through this process. The female deposits her eggs in a globular silken container in which they remain camouflaged and guarded. Indoors, black widow spiders similarly occur in dark, undisturbed sites such as behind furniture or under desks.

Adult males can be distinguished from juvenile females by their more-slender body, longer legs and large pedipalps a second pair of appendages of the main body part typical of most other male spiders.

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Black Widow Spiders