Jacksonville's Guide To Brown Recluse Spider Control

August 13, 2021

We’re very fortunate here in the United States that we don’t have a single deadly spider – even our most venomous spiders aren’t usually life-threatening to healthy adults. However, we do have three spiders with medically significant bites – meaning their venom is potent enough to require medical intervention to prevent serious symptoms or permanent damage. One of the most common medically significant spiders here in Jacksonville, AL is the brown recluse. This spider does its best to avoid contact with people, so bites are rare. However, if you do get bitten, you could be in for a bumpy ride. Let’s talk about ways to avoid a bite. 

a brown recluse spider crawling in a basement

Brown Recluse Bite

Brown recluse spiders love to hide in dark cervices and out-of-the-way spots, so it isn’t implausible for you to receive a bite and never see the spider that inflicted it. If it was a brown recluse spider, you’ll start experiencing symptoms between three and eight hours out from being bitten. Most of the time, issues begin with inflammation, redness, and burning irritation.

Over the course of a few days, you may notice a lesion start to form that’s purple or black in the center. This is the beginning of the necrosis (tissue death) that is the hallmark of a brown recluse bite. If left untreated, necrosis can spread, leaving deep ulcers that can cause lasting scars, so it’s important to get medical help as soon as you recognize the signs of necrosis.

On other occasions, you may ideally be able to capture the spider that bit you. If this is the case, you’ll need to identify your spider – this is easier said than done. Recluses are one of the most misidentified spiders because they look so similar to other spiders. Plenty of spiders have hairy legs, are brown, and even have a fiddle marking on their cephalothorax. So how to distinguish a recluse? The main way to tell a recluse from any other spider is to count the eyes. Brown recluses only have six eyes as compared to most spiders’ eight, and the recluse’s eyes are arranged in three pairs around the head.

If you can’t see the eyes well enough to tell, another general rule about the recluse is they’re plainer than a lot of similar-looking spiders. While other spiders have bands around their legs, stripes on their bodies, or spackled patterns, brown recluses are just, well, brown. Their legs are plain. Their bodies are plain except for the fiddle-shaped marking. Even their fiddle itself is plain – it’s patternless and darker than the rest of the body.

Spider Prevention Tips

Even though recluses don’t usually bite unless they’re out of options, you still don’t want to be sharing a home with them. The best way you can prevent spiders is by sealing up entry points that allow them in – such as cracks and holes in your home’s exterior – and eliminating infestations of other pests that could be attracting them. Brown recluses, like other spiders, prey on insects, so if you’ve got an infestation of roaches, flies, silverfish, or other things spiders like to eat, you might see an uptick in the number of spiders in your home.

If that happens, it’s best not to take the risk of being bitten. Here at Havard Pest Control, we’ve got over seven decades of experience dealing with pests endemic to the Southeast, including brown recluse spiders. We can safely eliminate any spider problem you may be having and tailor a plan to fit your needs so these potentially dangerous pests don’t return. So visit our contact page or call (800) 898-0264 to request your free inspection. 

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