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Black House Spider

 

Black House Spiders are widely distributed in Australia and are also found in the United States. Their webs form untidy, lacy silk sheets with funnel-like entrances. Somewhere in the web is a funnel-shaped entrance to the nest, where spider spends most of his time, waiting for prey. They are quite shy, only coming out of the nest to capture their prey, then quickly retreat. They prefer dry habitat areas and secluded locations, and are commonly found in window framing, under eaves, gutters, in brickwork, sheds, toilets and among rocks, tree trunks and bark. Electric lights attract their main food source of moths, flies, mosquitoes and other insects. The black house spider is a favoured prey of the white-tailed spider.

 

The Black House Spider is a dark robust spider, with the female (up to 18mm) being larger than the male (about 9mm). Their heads are black in colour. The carapace and legs are dark brown to black, and the abdomen is charcoal grey with a dorsal pattern of white markings (sometimes indistinct).

 

The bite of the Black House Spider is venomous, but not lethal. Some people report severe pain around the bite site, heavy sweating, muscular pains, vomiting, headaches and giddiness. In any case if bitten by a Black-house spider, immediate first aid and medical attention should be sought.