What Attracts Black Widow Spiders?

What Attracts Black Widow Spiders?
May 15, 2022
What Attracts Black Widow Spiders?

Learn More About Black Widow Spiders, What Attracts Them, And How To Deal With Them

Do you know what attracts black widow spiders? Black widows feature a striking red hourglass shape on their abdomen. These shiny black venomous arachnids are notorious for their painful bites, which can cause muscle aches, nausea, and even death in some cases.

If you're curious about what attracts these spiders, keep reading! First, we'll discuss the characteristics of black widows and what attracts them to their habitats.

We'll also provide tips on how to get rid of black widows and prevent them from returning. So stay safe and be informed by checking out our guide below!

Black Widow Appearance

Black widows are easily recognizable by their shiny black bodies and the red hourglass shape on the underside of their abdomens. Female black widows are typically much larger than males, with a body length of about 0.39 inches (or roughly 9-12 mm). Males, on the other hand, only develop to be about 0.24 inches (or approximately 6 mm or less) long. Male black widows are also a bit less black in color and may appear brown in some cases.

While the red hourglass shape is a defining characteristic of the black widow, it's important to note that not all spiders with this feature are black widows. For example, the red-back spider, which is found in Australia, also has a red hourglass shape on its abdomen.

In terms of coloration, black widows can range from light brown to jet black. Their legs are usually long and thin in proportion to their bodies. Black widow spiders typically have very smooth bodies with few bumps or other irregularities.

Black widows are easily distinguishable with their red abdominal hour glass.

Black widows are easily distinguishable with their red abdominal hour glass.


Black widows are found throughout the world in temperate regions. However, in North America, they are most commonly found in the southern and western United States. Black widows prefer dark, dry ground-level places such as woodpiles, garages, storage areas, crawl spaces, and sheds. They also like to build their irregular, messy webs in basements if the conditions are right.

When looking for a mate, black widows often travel long distances searching for a suitable partner. Once they select a mate, they will typically stay in the same area for the rest of their lives.

Physical Characteristics

One of the most pronounced physical characteristics of black widows is their long, thin legs. These legs are covered in tiny hairs that help the spider sense vibrations. Black widows also have very poor eyesight, so they depend on web vibrations to sense prey and avoid predators.

What Attracts Black Widow Spiders?

So what attracts black widow spiders to their habitats? One of the things that attract them is the presence of other insects. Black widows are known to eat many different kinds of insects, including flies, crickets, moths, and beetles.

Another thing that attracts black widows is the presence of heavily cluttered areas of the home or garage. These pests like to build their spider webs in areas where there is plenty of stuff to hide in and where there are plenty of insects to eat.

Notably, black widows often prefer barely ever touched cardboard boxes. These boxes make a dark, dry place to spin their web and lay eggs. Other insects may also hang around these boxes, which makes food sources even closer to the black widows.

Getting rid of the clutter in your home or garage is essential if you have a black widow problem. This will make it less attractive to these spiders and make it easier for you to spot them if they are present.

You can usually find black widows at ground level in cluttered areas.

You can usually find black widows at ground level in cluttered areas.

How To Get Rid Of Black Widows Spiders And Prevent Black Widows From Returning

While these home pests are not aggressive and usually only bite humans in self-defense, black widow spider bites are dangerous. Black widow bites can be very painful and cause difficulty breathing. 

If you've been bitten by a black widow, you must seek professional medical attention immediately, as bites can be deadly in some instances. When black widow spiders are on your property, it's essential to take steps to remove them. Here are some quick pest control tips on how to get rid of black widows:


-Remove all materials that the spiders could use to build webs, such as piles of leaves, wood, or stones.


-Wear gloves when handling any materials that could contain spiders or their eggs.


-Don't go barefoot in areas where black widows might be present. Instead, wear closed-toe shoes and long pants to help protect your skin.


-Reduce clutter around your home and yard, so the spiders have fewer places to hide. Trade out old cardboard boxes for sealable clear plastic containers. Trim weeds and remove debris, so the spiders have nowhere to build their webs.


-Seal any cracks or holes around your home so the spiders can't get inside. Check screens and weatherstripping to make sure they're in good repair. If you have a vacuum with a disposable bag, you can vacuum up black widow webs, spiders, and egg sacs.

While they are venomous, black widows are luckily no more challenging to get rid of than other spiders.

While they are venomous, black widows are luckily no more challenging to get rid of than other spiders.

Recommended Spider Control Products

We recommend using liquid residual concentrates, dusts, and aerosols to fight back against black widow infestations.

Do-It-Yourself Pest Control Has All The Black Wider Spider Control Products You Need

Not only do we have all the products you need to get rid of black widows, but our blog is also full of information on identifying and controlling spiders and many other pests.

Now that you know what attracts black widow spiders and how to get rid of them, you can begin to take action and make your family safer. Contact our friendly team of pest control experts if you need any advice or have any questions.

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