Black Widow Spiders in Norfolk

08 December 2016

Arachnophobia – No fear for Abate Pest Management!

Abate Pest Management were called into action when they received a pest control call from a company in Norfolk stating that they had a nasty looking spider on their property.

Staff managed to trap the spider in a glass tumbler until the professionals arrived and quickly identified the spider to be a female Black Widow Spider, considered the most venomous spider in North America.

A plan was implemented that included tracking down where antivenom is located in the UK, which turned out to be just two hospitals.  The local James Paget hospital was notified and medical advice was given should anyone receive a bite.

Ian Parkinson Service Manager at Abate Pest Control, had to face his spider fears and transfer the Black Widow from the glass to a sealed insect jar. In addition a small cocoon was removed from the premises and within 48 hours has produced approximately 100 spiderlings. 

Abate used specialist insect fogging to make sure that any other spiders at the location would be eradicated. It was believed that the spider hitched a ride on a container from Texas.

Jon Blake Director of Abate Pest Management commented, “It was down to the fast reaction of the company who called us to deal with the problem that brought this issue safely under control. Black Widows are very notorious spiders identified by the coloured, hourglass-shaped mark on their abdomens. This spider’s bite is much feared because its venom is reported to be 15 times stronger than a rattlesnake’s. In humans bites produce muscle aches, nausea, and a paralysis of the diaphragm that can make breathing difficult; however, contrary to popular belief, most people who are bitten suffer no serious damage. We have been called out for snakes, scorpions and spiders before but never in the past 24 years for one of these deadly creatures.”

The Department of Zoology, University of Cambridge is currently looking to help rehome the Black Widow spiders.

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