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Black widow spider, illustration

Black widow spider, illustration

C034/5543

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Credit

ELLA MARU STUDIO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ELLA MARU STUDIO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Black widow spider, illustration. The black widow spider (Latrodectus mactans) is highly venomous. Distinctive features of this spider are its long black glossy legs and a red hourglass marking. Females of this species are notorious for occasionally eating their mates after mating. The main components of the spider's venom are latrotoxins. Bites of the black widow spider are rarely fatal, however female bites are dangerous to humans. Antivenom immunoglobulin was introduced in 1920s.

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