Friday, November 12, 2010

Steatoda Grossa: False Black Widow

 So, I'm learning that there are things that look like Black Widows but aren't.  They are all in the same family,Theridiidae, and all have the same hunched up body shape, but they are not all widows. They do, by all accounts, have a painful bite, just not up to widow standards.

Anyway, here are a few I've seen around the house and yard. These, I'm pretty sure are steatoda grossa (There are at least 3 kinds called "False black widow," so the scientific name comes in handy here). They're very shy. The widows I photograph just sit around and let me use the flash, the adult grossa outside runs into the plant saucer where he lives (he's bugguide ID'd as a male). The other--the one on the orange and white background--was racing across the bathroom wall, and I never did get a really clear shot.

Then there are the spiderlings: Someone told me they might be widows, but this was corrected: Apparently black widow babies aren't black--in fact, I have a picture of one I'll post tomorrow. Crazy, isn't it?

Spiderlings in the kitchen

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