Economic Importance for Humans: Negative
While Latrodectus mactans are not aggressive and do not have the instinct to bite, their venom is neurotoxic, which means that it blocks the transmission of nerve impulses. If the black widow spider bites, most likely it has been pressed against human bare skin, and this causes a natural reaction, a bite in self-defense. A bitten human suffers from a painful rigidity in the abdominal wall muscles. While the poison from this spider is serious, it is rarely fatal. If treated properly and promptly, the victim completely recovers. A black widow's bite is distinguished by a double puncture wound. Children and adults who are not in good physical condition suffer the most from the bite. It is reported that the venom of Latrodectus mactans is 15 times more toxic than a rattlesnake’s.
Negative Impacts: injures humans (bites or stings, venomous )
- Gertsch, W. 1979. American Spiders. New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold.
- Preston-Mafham, K., R. Preston-Mafham. 1996. The Natural History of Spiders. Ramsbury, Marlborough: The Crowood Press Ltd..