How Dangerous Are Michigan’s Most Venomous Spiders?
If you have a fear of spiders, you'll be happy to know that there are only two in Michigan that are venomous. However, if you suffer from arachnophobia, that's probably two too many.
The good thing about the two spiders that we're talking about is the fact that they are rarely seen by Michiganders. When they are spotted they usually attempt to flee.
The northern black widow is a venomous spider that lives in North America, including some parts of the United States like Michigan.
According to MSU, they appear to be more common in the western Lower Peninsula. They are usually found in old stumps, hollow logs, under fallen fence posts, in abandoned animal burrows or piles of brush, and in the corners of sheds and crawlspaces.
How Dangerous Is the Northern Black Widow?
If bitten, the venom can cause some nasty symptoms such as pain, muscle cramping, sweating, and in severe cases, nausea or difficulty breathing.
They say the venom of a widow spider is 15 times more toxic than that of rattlesnakes. However, since little venom is actually injected, it's not as severe.
The brown recluse is native to the southeastern US and rarely found in Michigan. However, as our climate changes, sightings have become more frequent in recent years.
How Dangerous Is the Brown Recluse?
Symptoms from its venomous bite can range from pain and itching to death of the surrounding tissue, which can become severe. Young children and the elderly are most at risk.
According to AZ Animals, brown recluses have been reported in only 10 counties in Michigan. These counties include Kent, Lenawee, Hillsdale, Wayne, Washtenaw, Oakland, Livingston, Ingham, Genesee, and Shiawassee counties.
When I was around 12 or 13 years old, I was bitten on the neck by a brown recluse while living in Lapeer County. I don't remember the actual bite, but I sure do remember the open hole that it left in my neck.
My doctor told me that he believed it was a brown recluse as the wound it left behind matched all descriptions of a typical bite. It's been roughly 37 years since that happened, and I still have the scar to prove it.