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Brown recluse spiders of the loxosceles reclusa species are found throughout the midwest and southeast United States. They are poisonous, causing a venemous sore that is slow to heal.

The brown recluse is a light to dark brown spider about 1/3 to 1/2 inch in length. It is distinctive due to it’s marking: a violin-shape on the back of the head. They are shy and slow moving, usually scurrying away if disturbed. Bites typically occur from a person rolling over on them, putting on shoes where the brown recluse has become trapped, or in clothing, bedding and other such places through accidentally sitting on or otherwise threatening the spider.

Brown recluse spiders prefer secluded places to set up residence. Areas like outdoor woodpiles, cracks and crevices in a houses foundation, basements or attics. They also appreciate warm, moist areas of damp heat. Bites will be sore and ulcerate depending on the amount of venom released with the bite. Bites are rarely fatal, but it’s wise to contact a physician immediately. Keeping the spider in a glass container for identification purposes will often help the doctor to be sure it was indeed a brown recluse.If a sore lasts for a while or is especially troublesome or you experience other symptoms of illness be sure to contact your physician again.

Insecticides are effective if they contain resmethrin. Spraying outdoor areas where spiders may hide like loose wood, trash or clutter can help keep down pupulations. Make sure you wear gloves and protective clothing to avoiud bites. Indoors, you may spray webs with chlorypyrifos or diazinon containing insecticides and then vacuum infested areas to remove webs, egg sacks, and remaining spiders. Destroy the vacuum cleaner bag immediately. Once again, if bitten by a brown recluse it is best to contact your doctor immediately. Keep ice on the wound to avoid swelling, and do not squeeze the area to prevent poison from spreading.