Should You Worry About Black Widow Spiders in Michigan?

By Bridget Ambrose

What’s red, black, and frightens homeowners across the country each year?

Black widow spiders inhabit many of proof.’s service areas, but what about northern states like Michigan?

Keep reading to learn if black widow spiders in Michigan are a cause for concern and learn tips to maintain the safety of your home. 

Black Widow Spiders in Michigan?

Surprisingly, multiple black widow spider species call the United States home. Typically called widow spiders, these arachnids are known for their reclusive nature and aggressive breeding habits. 

Here’s a list of common widow spiders found across the country:

  • Northern black widow
  • Southern black widow
  • Brown widow
  • Western black widow
  • Red widow

As their names suggest, the spiders’ geographical location determines the type of pest you may see in your home. 

Brown and southern black widows live in many southern states like Texas, Tennessee, Louisana, Alabama, and Mississippi. Red widow spiders dwell in central and Southern Florida.

Northern black widow spiders primarily live along the east coast and northern states bordering Canada. Black widow spider populations aren’t significant in the state, but northern black widow spiders in Michigan might still cause concern for residents in the western peninsulas

While still donning a black widow’s signature red markings, a northern black widow spider may also have white patterns painting its sleek black skin. 

Check out this video to learn more!

Northern Black Widow Spider Habitats

Northern black widow spiders don’t typically inhabit indoor spaces. Instead, these arachnids prefer to create nests on or inside tree stumps, logs, leaves, or piles of rocks. 

When indoors, northern black widows congregate in dark, damp rooms. You’ll typically find one of these pests in garages or basements, away from the daily hustle and bustle of your household. 

Attics are another spot these spiders may build nests, but they’re more likely to stay close to the ground. Sheds, garages, and older unused buildings are also hotspots for these creepy critters.

Regardless of species, most black widows construct similar webs. Unlike the intricate patterns formed by other types of spiders, black widows prefer to live in an unruly amalgamation of spider silk. 

The average house spider may spin webs near your ceiling or doorways, so ground-level webs indicate a black widow infestation. 

Northern Black Widow Behavior

Despite their reputation as fearsome pests, black widow spiders in Michigan aren’t aggressive. These spiders tend to shy away from humans, preferring to rest alone in their secluded webs in unused corners.

Brown recluse spiders hunt around for their next meal, but black widows stay put on their messy webs. Once an insect creeps too close, the black widow will spin a protective covering around the pest to later consume. 

Black widow spiders feast on many typical nuisance insects like flies, grasshoppers, moths, ants, mosquitoes, and beetles. For homes with large insect infestations, black widows may invade indoor spaces in search of food and shelter. 

If you have black widow spiders inside, they shouldn’t bother you unless you mishandled them. Because of their shy disposition, black widows won’t creep near frequently inhabited areas. Most homeowners only encounter these pests in storage boxes or garage areas. 

While docile, female black widows occasionally engage in aggressive mating habits with their male partners. After breeding with a male spider, some females attack and eat their mate. 

What to do About Spider Bites

Black widow spiders may not seek out trouble, but these arachnids are still dangerous houseguests. As one of the most venomous spiders in the United States, black widows endanger thousands across the country each year. 

When bitten by a black widow, you may experience some of the following symptoms:

  • Muscle pain
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Rash 
  • Redness
  • Skin irritation or itching
  • Swelling 
  • Pain around the affected area
  • Bodywide pain and tremors

A black widow’s bite is dangerous for young children, the elderly, and immunocompromised individuals. However, anyone can experience harmful reactions to a black widow spider bite. 

Because venom can affect your nervous system, you should consult with a medical professional if your symptoms become severe. Black widows are one of the most dangerous spiders in the United States and may make you seriously ill. 

For general wound care, clean the bitten area and apply a disinfectant to avoid infection. To reduce swelling, apply a cold compress or bag filled with ice. If your illness persists, seek medical attention. 

Controlling Black Widow Spiders in Michigan 

What should you do whenever you find black widow spiders indoors?

If these pests head inside, this could indicate a larger insect problem in your home. To prevent further pest problems, evaluate the exterior of your property to look for any exposed cracks or ill-fitting doors and windows.

Because of their dangerous bite, we advise against handling the pests directly. Don’t try to squash the bugs you see. Instead, contact a trusted pest professional.

Here at proof. Pest control, we cover over thirty different pests, including black widow spiders! You don’t have to struggle with tough infestations alone. Contact us today to schedule an appointment or learn more about our services. 

Call proof. pest control at 888-291-5333, or send us a message online.

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