Asked in SpidersMinnesota
What kind of brown spider is found in Minnesota and poisonous?
January 28, 2008 9:07PM
Per UofM Extensions
= Potentially Dangerous Spiders =
The brown recluse spider, Loxosceles reculsa, is common outdoors and indoors in the southern and central United States. It is uncommon to extremely rare in the Upper Midwest. Only one specimen has been recorded in Minnesota (1953, Lake County). Only two specimens have been recorded in Wisconsin in the last 25 years. Brown recluse spiders have been reported in several widely scattered sites in southern Iowa since 1969. Specimens have been retrieved and confirmed from only twelve counties.
Figure 2. Brown Recluse Spider The brown recluse spider is nicknamed the fiddleback or violin spider because of the distinctive dark violin-shaped marking on top of the front body section. Notice the neck of the violin points toward the rear. The brown recluse is unusual in having six eyes instead of the usual eight. The spiders are tan to dark brown and nearly ½ inch in body size. Recluse spiders avoid areas where there is human activity, and prefer closets, guest rooms, basements, and attics. They frequently inhabit shoe boxes, clothing and furniture. These spiders are most active at night and feed on silverfish, crickets, and other insects. Most people are bitten on the hands or feet when they are handling infested items. The bite of the brown recluse spider is usually painless. However, localized burning sensation often develops within the first hour and during the next 6-12 hours, a small pimple or blister forms. The surrounding tissue begins to darken and take a raised appearance. The venom of this spider can cause extensive tissue damage (necrotic reaction) and over the next 10-14 days, a sunken, open, ulcerated sore up to several centimeters in diameter. It normally takes 6-8 weeks for a brown recluse spider bite to heal. A large sunken scar may persist that requires surgery to repair. Not every brown recluse bite results in ulcer formation. In rare cases systemic complications such as liver or kidney damage result. See your physician or emergency room as soon as you suspect a brown recluse spider bite. Capture the spider for later identification (crush the specimen, if necessary, but do so as gently as possible).