Florida has a few species of venomous spiders for its residents and visitors to have to deal with. Keep in mind spiders are not evil creatures out to get you at all costs. Spiders have a purpose in nature and that is to eat other pesky insects. Some people might Google “Poisonous Spiders in Florida” but the correct term is “Venomous Spiders in Florida. Poisonous would be something ingested, venomous means something injected with a bite or sting. Please check the sources listed at the end of this article for more information on these spiders in Florida.
The two venomous spider types in Florida are the Recluse and the Widow spiders. The widow family of spiders in Florida contains the Brown Widow, Red Widow and of course the more infamous Black Widow spiders.
These are black with a hour glass pattern on their abdomen, and as all widow spiders they get the name from the female eating the male after mating. Both the Southern and Northern Black Widow is found in Florida. The Southern one can be identified by its slow speech patterns and John Deere hat. Just kidding to see if anyone is really reading this and it’s no knock on southerners as I am one myself.
The Black Widow likes to live under rocks or boards anything with cover to protect it from predators. The bite will feel like a pin prick then fade quickly leaving two red marks on its victim. If you get bitten by a spider you should try to capture it or kill it without squashing it into an unrecognizable mess and preserve it in alcohol to show to the ER staff.
This would be my pick of not to get bitten by in the venomous spiders of Florida world. According to Surviveoutdoors.com it’s venom is 10 to 25 percent more potent than that of a rattlesnake, but they don’t get much venom out with their bite. Oh yeah as you can read here, Florida has rattlesnakes too!
The Red Widow is native to south and central Florida. The Red Widow has a black abdomen and it’s head and middle section are reddish orange head. The Red Widow does not have the traditional hour glass pattern but has red marks. This is a web spider who keeps its web in palmetto trees.
The Brown Widow can be brown or black or even light grey. Their abdomen has black, red, yellow and white markings and it has and orange or yellow hourglass on the underside of its abdomen. They like to build webs on buildings and are costal spiders in Florida.
The Brown Recluse has a violin shape on its body and head. They can be light colored or dark brown but the markings will be there it is really a Brown Recluse. They like sheds where they can hide and hunt insects. Brown Recluses will also come into your house and get into shoes or clothes.
Thanks for reading about venomous spiders in Florida and if you have any questions leave a comment below and I will try to answer them.
Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services
University of Florida- IFAS Extension