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9854

PHIL Image 9854

ID#:9854
Description:This 2007 photograph, captured by CDC biomedical photographer, James Gathany, depicted a female black widow spider, Latrodectus mactans, as she was in the process of spinning her web upon a tree branch. You’ll note the characteristic red hourglass located on her inferior abdominal surface, which can vary in coloration from yellowish, to shades of orange and red, and at times, can even be white. The female’s body is an overall shiny jet-black in color. This spider was found on a farm, here in the state of Georgia.

Spiders are members of the Phylum Arthropoda, and the Class Arachnida. Based on their habitats, the three species of black widow include the southern, L. mactans, northern, L. variolus, and western, L. hesperus. Human beings are bitten not as prey, but when a female spider feels threatened.

Females are poisonous, injecting a potent neurotoxic venom, i.e., 15X more potent than that of the rattlesnake, when it bites its victim, while the male L. mactans is harmless. Though venomous, the quantity of poison is so minute that death from a black widow bite is rarely fatal, though usually very painful.

High Resolution:Right click here and select "Save Target As..." for hi-resolution image (30.38 MB)
Content Providers(s):CDC/ Paula Smith
Creation Date:2007
Photo Credit:James Gathany
Links:
  • CDC - Environmental Health Services - Arachnids
    Categories:
    CDC Organization

    MeSH
    tree picture Chemicals and Drugs
    tree picture tree picture Complex Mixtures
    tree picturetree picture tree picture Venoms
    tree picturetree picturetree picture tree picture Arthropod Venoms
    tree picturetree picturetree picturetree picture tree picture Spider Venoms
    tree picture tree picture Immunologic and Biological Factors
    tree picturetree picture tree picture Biological Factors
    tree picturetree picturetree picture tree picture Venoms
    tree picturetree picturetree picturetree picture tree picture Arthropod Venoms
    tree picturetree picturetree picturetree picturetree picture tree picture Spider Venoms
    tree picture Organisms
    tree picture tree picture Animals
    tree picturetree picture tree picture Invertebrates
    tree picturetree picturetree picture tree picture Arthropods
    tree picturetree picturetree picturetree picture tree picture Arachnida
    tree picturetree picturetree picturetree picturetree picture tree picture Spiders
    tree picturetree picturetree picturetree picturetree picturetree picture tree picture Black Widow Spider
    Copyright Restrictions:None - This image is in the public domain and thus free of any copyright restrictions. As a matter of courtesy we request that the content provider be credited and notified in any public or private usage of this image.
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    This page last reviewed: Mar. 18 2005
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