Monday, September 10, 2012

Macro Monday {Latrodectus}

{Participating in Macro Monday, I heart Macro, and Your Sunday Best.}

Western Black Widow {Latrodectus hesperus}

{To see a slightly larger version of the picture, go here.}

Note: Latrodectus = widow spiders. I tricked you all into looking at this blog post, am I correct? Ha!

When we parked in the detached garage at our new house, I spied a spider on the wall near the bottom, pointed to it and exclaimed "Black Widow!" Dan took a closer look and then shook his head "no". He said it had red stripes on its back. So, I grabbed my camera thinking I was safe even though it looked all the world like a widow spider to me. I took my time and tried to get some excellent pictures.

Imagine my surprise when I did some research to discover it is a widow spider! Good Lord! The goosebumps just popped up all over my body. Even though I was about one to two feet away from the spider, it was scary knowing that I was shooting that close to the critter. I was speechless. I think Dan was too.

This goes to show you that not all black widows have a solid black upper abdomen. In other words, they can have a variety of patterns and colors too.

Due to lack of pictures on the WWW for this particular spider, I asked Texas Parks and Wildlife on facebook for help in identifying this particular species. I knew it was a widow spider (genus name: Latrodectus). But, I wanted to know the species also. They came back and said it was a Western Black Widow {Latrodectus hesperus}. So, there we go!

This is the last of the spider pictures for awhile. I am not promising that it is the last spider pictures I will post on this blog because I am a lover of critters and always wanting to know what is what to make sure it is safe to be around our house. (If the critter is inside the house, that is a different story – either it gets killed or it is transported to the great outdoors far from our house as they do NOT belong in the house.) By the way, this spider is no longer alive.

Note: This was shot on the same weekend I shot the other widow spiders.
PS Should I trust Dan about spiders in the future? I think not! Ha!