The Woodlouse Hunter Spider Often Invades Homes In Pennsylvania, But Their Bites Are Not As Dangerous As Some Sources Claim
It is well known that some of the world’s largest and most venomous spider species exist within tropical regions outside of the United States. The largest spider on record, the Goliath bird eater, dwells within the rainforests of northern South America, and many experts agree that the subtropical Sydney funnel web spider produces the deadliest venom of all documented spider species. Many people rightly claim that black widows, and the brown recluse are considered the most medically significant spiders in the US, but not everyone knows that the brown recluse can be found as far north as Iowa, while the northern black widow can be found as far northeast as Maine and up into Canada. Both the northern and southern black widow species can be found in Pennsylvania, but sightings are rare, and these species almost never enter homes. The woodlouse hunter spider is often mistaken for the brown recluse, but luckily, the woodlouse hunter is not known for inflicting medically harmful bites to humans, and the brown recluse is not native to Pennsylvania.
According to an online survey of documented woodlouse hunter encounters, the majority of sightings occurred indoors, and most outdoor sightings occurred near homes. Females of this species reach sizes of around .6 of an inch in body length, while males are a bit smaller. This species can be recognized by its reddish-orange cephalothorax and its dirty white abdomen. The woodlouse hunter is unique for having six eyes that form an oval, and its fangs are particularly large and slant forward, causing significant pain to bite victims. Since this species is spotted indoors often, they have been well documented as inflicting bites to humans. However, studies have shown that bites from the woodlouse hunter are often mistaken for brown recluse spider bites. The woodlouse hunter’s bite has never been documented as causing severe allergic reactions or tissue necrosis, but their bites have been documented as causing significant pain and intense itching at the site of the wound. The woodlouse hunter is not considered an aggressive species, but handling these spiders is not recommended.
Do you believe that you may have sustained a bite from a woodlouse hunter specimen?
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