A Black Widow Spider spinning a web in a tree

Northwest spiders to avoid

There’s a reason most people have an aversion to spiders. Spiders are predatory, venomous and can be very aggressive. Luckily, the majority of different species of spiders in the Pacific Northwest either don’t have enough venom in their bite to do any harm to humans, or they don’t possess mandibles strong enough to puncture our skin. ThinkstockPhotos-622184076

Good to hear, right? Well, don’t get excited just yet. There are still a few species of spiders that call Portland home and can cause actual harm to humans: hobo spiders and black widow spiders.

Hobo spiders

These small brown spiders resemble many other species, making them hard to identify. Hobo spiders have been linked to localized necrotic wounds in the past, although recent scientific studies are beginning to question the dangerousness of the species. Despite some scientific hesitation, it is still a good idea to avoid hobo spiders and call a Portland pest control service if you notice an infestation.

Black widow spiders

One of the creepiest spiders in the Portland area is also one of the most dangerous. Widow spiders prefer undisturbed areas such as woodpiles, deck undersides, sheds and garages. They aren’t the most aggressive species and rarely come indoors, but if one does bite you, things can get ugly. The neurotoxins in their venom can cause trembling, convulsions, respiratory failure and death. Antivenom is available, so if you think you have a black widow bite you should see a doctor immediately.

What do you do?

Prevent a spider-related injury by donning gloves whenever you work in the yard, clean your basement, or reach into dark areas around your home. The safest way to deal with a potentially dangerous spider is to contact a professional pest control service to properly identify the species and determine whether an infestation has occurred.

Mr. Little

He’s represented Western for nearly a century. But he’s no old fogey. Follow Mr. Little’s blog for pest tips and facts!

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