Black Widow

Asked May 21, 2018, 9:48 AM EDT

Good day,

I was wondering if Black Widow spiders lace their webs with venom, whether it be intentional or just residual when fabricating a web. I was working on an old Cessna reciprocating engine that was covered with webs and, after touching the web with my bare hands, my skin started to degrade and expose wounds. After further inspection, I found a Black Widow nestled next to the cylinder cooling fins and it looked like an adult. I didn't perform any hard labor previous to finding the spider that would cause these wounds on my hands. I am not asking out of paranoia. The wounds are minuscule. I am simply asking out of curiosity and appreciate any help in advance.

Respectfully,

Dusty Ray

Pima County Arizona

1 Response

Dear Dusty,

Thank you for your question. I recommend that you contact the University of Arizona's John Palumbo, who specializes in entomology.

John Palumbo

Research Specialist, Entomology

jpalumbo@cals.arizona.edu