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Our Pet the Black Widow Spider
02-21-2013, 04:53 AM,
#1
4sweed Offline
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Our Pet the Black Widow Spider
When my husband and I were moving furniture in our garage we came across a very large black widow spider of which Frank captured in a jar intent of keeping it as a pet. I was none to thrilled about the idea but allowed him to keep it outside of our Florida home. We also dicovered hidden in a metal table leg a drather large family of red widow spiders, a species I did not know existed. Those spiders were not keep as pets. Frank was always giving me, as well as, others lessons and knowledge about plants and animals, and insects of south Florida, so having such a large spider was a good find for him.
These spiders are aggressive if distrubed and their venom is strong than a rattlesnake. If bitten, you will experience muscle aches and nausea, and paralysis of the diaphram. It is important to go to the hospital as quickly as possible if bitten.
Frank kept the spider for several months and it was interesting to learn about the danger of these types of spiders. The following is a documentary about Black Widow Spiders and their life-cycles so you can be better informed as well:

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02-21-2013, 08:49 AM,
#2
AnnaU93 Offline
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RE: Our Pet the Black Widow Spider
Wow, I would honestly not come close to one of these and I would definitely call a=an exterminator of some kind. This is very brave of you to agree with your husband to keep him as a "pet" because we now how dangerous this species of spiders are and the majority of people probably would not want to take a chance if god forbid it go loose or anything of that matter.
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02-22-2013, 11:02 PM, (This post was last modified: 02-22-2013, 11:04 PM by Ram.)
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Ram Offline
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RE: Our Pet the Black Widow Spider
Are you sure it is a good idea to keep a black widow spider as pet? They are lethal. I wouldn't want one anywhere near my home. In fact, I wouldn't want to get anywhere near the areas where there are black widow spiders around. One time it was on Discovery Channel or maybe it was on Animal Planet, one woman live in Phoenix was bit twice when she put on a shoe with a black widow spider in it. She was rushed to the hospital. Not a good idea to have them in your home in my opinion.

I have kept spiders too as a kid many years ago but nothing venomous enough to harm the humans.

You should post a photo or a video of your own black widow spider instead of someone else's video since you have one yourself. Smile
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02-24-2013, 11:40 AM,
#4
4sweed Offline
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RE: Our Pet the Black Widow Spider
I would agree with you concerning the black widow spider as a pet. I don't have it anymore. When I was married, my husband and his father, had a wildlife farm in Florida. They raised all types of wild animals. There were cougers and leopards, tiger and servals, bobcats and various birds, a raccoon and otters, and wild alligators that stopped by to visit.

Frank Jr & Sr, did wildlife lectures at local events and Indian Reservations, and once at the Coco Convania Club in Miami. So having a black widow spider to teach people about the danger of having them around your house, was normal for them. It was a lot of fun and a lot of work, but luckily no one was ever seriously hurt although, we had some close calls.

The reason I don't put my own pictures up is because I do not have a scanner right now that works well. Even if I did still have the spider in a jar it would be hard to get a good picture for here. Thus, I need to use other people's video's to show the creatures I write about.

Any other questions? I will be happy to answer them. Smile
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06-30-2014, 01:08 AM,
#5
JudyCap Offline
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RE: Our Pet the Black Widow Spider
I can't imagine anyone keeping a poisoness spider or snake for a pet. But to each his own. Just hope you don't have kids that can get to it and get bit.

My Grama had a "pet" spider outside her kitchen window. It was a big "popcorn" or "barn" Spider. My cousins would catch grasshoppers and thro it into his web.

When it came time to wash the window, she had my husband who is 6' 4" come and move the spider, wash the window and put the spider back.
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10-28-2014, 05:06 PM,
#6
nafretiti Offline
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RE: Our Pet the Black Widow Spider
I've heard a lot about Black Widows, first I heard they could kill you and now I hear they can just make you very sick if you're an adult and not kill you. Either way the Black Widow sounds way too dangerous to even have as a pet, honestly I'd just release it back into the wild and leave it alone. Any poisonous spider should be left alone, they can rot your flesh and make you seriously ill,it would not be worth the hospital trip and medical bills when you could of saved yourself all those problems.
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10-28-2014, 07:33 PM,
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cyberpuppet Offline
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RE: Our Pet the Black Widow Spider
I think people like your husband that learn and teach about wildlife are wonderful - especially the bits about how things like black widows are only defending themselves and do not have to be killed if you understand how to live with them safely - as he obviously did.

There is a big fuss in the UK at the moment about false widow spiders. They were introduced to this country over 100 years ago but have been getting more common. People here do freak about the fact that they will bite, lots of people in the UK think there are no biting species here. Their bite can be nasty as it is the type of venom that kills cells making secondary infection very likely and while the venom wont kill you an infected bite can lead to blood poisoning which might. Although nobody has died from a bite people make more fuss about them than wasps which cause several deaths every year.
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10-29-2014, 06:02 PM, (This post was last modified: 10-29-2014, 06:08 PM by kfander.)
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kfander Offline
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RE: Our Pet the Black Widow Spider
I was a paramedic for twenty years. Only the female black widows are particularly venomous (kind of like humans that way); although the male black widow has a venom sack, they are tiny compared to the females and not especially harmful. Contrary to what most people think though, the bite of a black widow is unlikely to kill anyone who isn't very young, very old, or already sick. It is best to seek medical attention but they are not as dangerous as their reputation suggests. Of all spiders in North America, they are the most likely to cause loss of life, however.

The brown recluse, as its name suggests, is not particularly aggressive. When someone is bitten by a brown recluse, it is usually reacting in self defense to someone rolling over on it or putting their hand, arm, leg or another exposed part of the boy on it, such as children playing under a bed or behind a couch. The brown recluse is more likely than the black widow to share a habitat with people. However, the bite of a brown recluse spider is unlikely to be fatal but it will make you miserable for a long time. Again, as with the black widow, the very young, the very old, and the very sick are the most likely to have a fatal result from it, but less likely with the brown recluse than with the black widow. The bite of a brown recluse causes an ulcer that can take months to heal, will likely leave a scar, and may require surgery.

There are no recorded cases, by the way, of anyone ever dying because of a tarantula bite. Although they are venomous, their venom is very unlikely to be dangerous to humans, the larger danger being from infection caused by the bite. There are more dangerous spiders in South America that are related to tarantulas, but they are not actually tarantulas. By the way, tarantulas in Australia, Asia and Europe are more likely to attack and have a more potent venom than those in the Americas, but still unlikely to kill anyone. Their bite is more comparable to a wasp sting.

Not a spider, but while I'm on the subject of things that people are particularly afraid of, the only scorpion native to the United States that has the likely potential to kill a human being is the Arizona Barking Scorpion , found in Arizona and parts of Texas. Like the bite of a black widow, only the very young, very old, or very ill are likely to die from the sting of a scorpion. Of the more than a thousand species of scorpions on the planet, all are venomous but only about 25 have venom likely to kill a human being. I've been stung by a scorpion though, and it does hurt.

Many years ago, when I was eighteen and living in Southern California, I was renting a house with a friend of mine. We found a female black widow in the cabinet under the bathroom sink. Rather than killing it, we just made a point of looking for it before we did anything in the bathroom. It never seemed to leave the cabinet, so that was fine with us. At least, it was fine with us until one day it hatched hundreds of baby black widows. That was the day we quit pretending to be Buddhist. We took the mom and as many of the babies as we could get to crawl onto a newspaper and evicted them. We went back for as many of the babies as we could get, and then sprayed for the rest of them. Sharing a bathroom only goes so far.
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10-29-2014, 08:07 PM,
#9
cyberpuppet Offline
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RE: Our Pet the Black Widow Spider
I think one of the reasons there are some problems in the UK at the moment is we have developed the mindset that we dont have "dangerous spiders" and so people do not automatically seek medical attention when they are are bitten. Like I said in my post above we do have false widows and they will bite but the bite itself is not going to kill but failing to get medical attention for it is dangerous because it almost always sets up a really nasty infection.

I was actually bitten by one twenty years ago - and did not seek medical attention until I had a massive pus filled blister and it was painful to walk. The doctor gave me a severe telling off and said I was on the brink of blood poisoning and if I had left it another 12 hours I would have put myself in intensive care and been at risk of dying. As it was 20 years ago I did not make the front pages of the national papers like happens today but the message was the same - if you get bitten see a doctor.
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06-18-2015, 09:27 AM,
#10
SarahWorksAtHome Offline
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RE: Our Pet the Black Widow Spider
YIKES!
So yeah, I have a few questions. One was already answered by you explaining your difficulty in uploading a picture.
1. Is it legal to keep them? I know there are a lot of restrictions on snakes and such so I didn't know if there were on spiders.
2. Is it a male or female?

I just... couldn't. No way. LOL. I'm terrified of even writing spiders. I am one of those people that suddenly transform into a ninja if I accidentally walk into a web!
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