Description, photo, lifestyle of a hermit spider


Some time ago, a lot of noise was made by the story of the invasion of spiders on the home of residents of Missouri (USA). An unpleasant neighbor turned out to be a brown recluse spider - a creature arrogant and deadly. What circumstances preceded the invasion of almost 6 thousand little monsters remains a mystery, but he won this battle, evicting a man from his own home. How to identify a poisonous representative of arachnids and what threatens to meet with him, tell you more.

The brown spider resembles a harmless grass maker, which differs in that it carries a deadly threat

Why a hermit?

The hermit is called for his desire for solitude and nocturnal lifestyle. You will not see his web on the ceiling or between the plants. He builds a nest in secluded, inaccessible places, likes to be dark and dry. These are single spiders that can live in groups, but do not need this at all. In addition, he is not tied to his Putin, going for prey, goes far from the nest.

Distinctive features of the "portrait"

Brown recluse spider is easy to identify by appearance, although in the photo it is somewhat reminiscent of a haymaker - a harmless creature and terribly fearful.

The arthropod has a dirty brown or dark yellow coloration, almost uniform in color on the cephalothorax, abdomen, and legs. A distinctive feature is a violin-like pattern on the outside of the cephalothorax. The spider has long, widely spaced paws. The body is covered with short thick hairs.

There are a few more features that distinguish the brown recluse spider from a numerous order of arachnids.

  1. In addition to the recognizable pattern, it has 3 pairs of eyes, and not 4, like other relatives.
  2. If you look closely, there are lighter spots on the legs at the joints.
  3. His web is erratic, sticky, whitish, does not have the usual radial pattern.
  4. If a hermit is disturbed, instinctively he takes a threatening pose - he leans on his hind legs, the front ones - he pulls in, the second pair (pedipalps) - he raises.
Features that recognize the hermit spider

Where is it found?

The homeland and traditional habitat of the brown recluse spider is the eastern United States, from where it migrates in the southern and southwestern direction of the mainland. There is evidence that Loxosceles reclusa was introduced to Australia. According to the climatic conditions of habitat, suitable regions are the Mediterranean, the subtropical zone of Eurasia. Fortunately, the dangerous arthropod has not been noticed here yet.

How does it hunt?

The hermit is small in size, does not weave net hunters, and therefore uses the only possible way of hunting - killing the victim with the help of poison. In search of prey, he goes at night. Finding an insect or another spider, he attacks and quickly injects poison, immobilizing the victim. Death comes instantly, as its poison is one of the most toxic substances, the nature of which has not been fully studied.

Note! The poison of Loxosceles reclusa spider is transparent and viscous. It contains dangerous enzymes, which, getting under the skin, destroy cellular bonds, start the process of soft tissue dying, and cause multiple inflammations.

Life cycle

Brown spiders from the genus Loxosceles belong to long-livers. The average life expectancy is 2–4 years, some specimens live up to 6 years. The female, before laying eggs, weaves a dense cocoon. The number of eggs in the clutch is 40–50 pcs. The future offspring of the spider reliably guards, practically without leaving the nest, until the juvenile spiders appear. Until reaching the mature form, the cub sheds up to 8 times, while shedding a dense chitinous shell.

Probability of meeting a person

Not only does man tame nature, but our smaller brothers adapt to coexistence with civilization. So, the brown recluse spider gladly climbs into a dry, warm, and even better, an abandoned room. Possible places of encounter with a dangerous arthropod are sheds, attics, empty summer houses, basements, woodpiles. It penetrates houses through open windows and doors. Here is hiding from the eyes of people behind batteries, baseboards, paintings, between the wall and tightly moved furniture.

The arthropod attacks when it feels threatened — crushed, stepped. Shows aggression, if you destroy the nest, suddenly invade the shelter.

Note! In the States, the bite of this spider is not uncommon. Representatives of the Loxosceles reclusa genus suffer up to 7 thousand people annually. In a third of them, a bite leads to serious consequences. Under unfavorable circumstances, death is possible.

The hermit's web is sticky and disorderly.

Bite effects

Those unlucky describe the hermit spider bite as a sharp, sudden injection, the pain of which quickly passes. At the initial sensations it is easy to confuse with a mosquito bite. It is rare that the victim immediately calls for help, since the consequences only come after 6–8 hours. What symptoms appear?

  • Painless at first, a few hours later, the bite begins to throb with sharp pain.
  • The area of ​​damage swells, reddens, gets hot.
  • Gradually, the redness and swelling increases, spreads - the lesion grows under the influence of the toxin.
  • The head starts to ache, weakness, nausea appear, the temperature may rise - symptoms of intoxication of the body.
  • A blister appears at the puncture site, which then bursts, forming an ulcer.

It is at this stage that victims tend to seek medical help. If it is rendered late, local necrosis (death) of the tissues may occur. The bite site changes radically, turning into a wound, after two days.

Note! Necrosis is a severe, ugly outwardly wound, when under the influence of a poison the flesh actually rot. More precisely, the poison provokes a secondary infection, multiple inflammations, which disable the vital systems of the body. Treatment of such complications after a hermit spider bite takes from 3-6 months to 3 years. At the site of injury remains a noticeable scar.

According to doctors, this poison is so strong that death does not occur only because of a tiny dose of toxin. But if he gets into the body of an allergy, a child, a person with weak immunity, the outcome is unpredictable.

Bite ulcer 2 days later

Urgent Care

  1. The wound should be washed with soap and cold water, disinfected with an antiseptic.
  2. Try to squeeze out the poison from the puncture of the skin.
  3. To slow down the spread of the toxin, from time to time apply ice to the bite.
  4. Above the affected area, it is recommended to apply a tight bandage or tourniquet.
  5. You can take an antibiotic, drink antiallergic drug.

These are only emergency measures that do not cancel the visit to the doctor. At least for safety net.

Precautions against potential danger

The possibility of being bitten by a brown spider can be minimized if precautions are taken.

  • Inspect clothing, shoes before putting on, bed - before bedtime.
  • Cleaning the room, working in the yard, garden, wear gloves.
  • Do not litter residential, utility rooms with empty boxes, unnecessary things, paper, rags.
  • Install mosquito nets on windows, keep doors closed.
  • "Do not breed" in the house of flies, mosquitoes and other insects that attract spider-like hunters.

And finally. Before you go to an unfamiliar country, ask about its poisonous fauna.

Features hermit spider, help with the bite:

Brown recluse spider

One of this family is brown, or brown spider (hermit), its photo is presented below. These creatures are distinguished by their toxic poison. After an insect bite in this place, a complete necrosis of tissue occurs. The "lucky ones" who were lucky to have such a neighbor as the brown spider (hermit) are residents of the eastern United States.

This poisonous creation of nature can not be attributed to the most friendly individuals, but, nevertheless, it is characterized by activity and moderately intrusive character. Perhaps the brown hermit spider would have remained unremarkable arthropods to this day, but the strange quality of its poison has attracted the attention of scientists. Professor Binford explains that these spiders have been using their poison for about 120 million years.

Habitat eight-headed "monster"

This species of spiders is found on the lands of the middle west of the USA, right up to the Gulf of Mexico. They have not reached California yet, but representatives of the Looseness genus reside in those places. In Hawaii, there is a red recluse spider (see photo below). He is a relative of the eight-headed "monster."

Global warming may cause relocation of this type of arachnids further north. So get acquainted with his representatives in detail will be just the way. At present, Georgia, the Mediterranean and the southern part of Russia are considered to be favorable habitats for a hermit spider.

Spiders love to hide in the roots of trees, in animal burrows, generally where there are shady places. Over time, the hermit spider is increasingly found in the garage, basement, toilet and attic rooms, as well as in sewer manholes. The hermits began to behave like full neighbors of people, settling in apartments and houses.

The appearance of a small hermit

Brown spider is small in size. When the legs are in straightened form, the length of his body is 6-20 mm. This deadly hermit spider is not always able to be noticed, because it is very small. Females are larger in size than males.

The body is predominantly brown in color, sometimes gray and dark yellow individuals can be found. Brown hermit spider is also called a violin. This was facilitated by the fact that the drawing, located on the head and chest, very much resembles this musical instrument.

A distinctive feature of this type is the presence of 6 eyes instead of 8. On the abdominal part and paws you can see small sensitive hairs. The legs of a hermit spider are quite long and thin. When he is at rest, the legs are wide apart.


By way of life, brown hermit spiders belong to nocturnal predators. They eat food in the dark. Males come out of their web and go to night raids to survey distant territories. Females do this not very willingly, they usually prefer to hunt near their home. The remaining time of day, nightly little hunters sit in a secluded place.

The food for the brown recluse spider is all that falls into the trap, the role of which is played by the web. The prey is mainly small insects and other spiders. It is not at all difficult for hermits to get food, it does not take much work. Before scientists there is an unsolved mystery about why nature then endowed this insect with potent poison. The eight-headed “monsters” live in peace, without needing to touch anyone.


A female brown hermit spider, having chosen a secluded place away from prying eyes, begins to lay eggs in white sacs-cocoons. In each such cocoon, weaved by the female from the web personally, there are 40-50 eggs. The size of the bag is about 7.5 mm in diameter.

The many young brown hermit spider born into the world develop many molts before they grow up. They change their outfit 5-8 times. These creatures painfully tolerate such a procedure, it is unpleasant to them. It is possible that this is why hermits show anger and bite painfully.

Discarded spider outfit is pretty tough, it can be stored in the ground for a long time. Experienced experts use it for identification during the study of insects of this species. Under natural conditions, a brown recluse spider can live 2-4 years.

A hermit spider bite is a danger to humans.

For people, the most terrible animals, oddly enough, are poisonous spiders. They can quietly get to their victim and deliver a "stab in the back." It is clear that no one wants to be in her place! In the same row among the most dangerous arthropods in the world are hermit spiders. The poison of these animals is of a slow action, its manifestation can be noticed only several hours after the bite. At first, the person feels a slight tingling or burning sensation. Then everything will depend on how much poison is ingested. In the event that it got a lot, after 5-6 hours the bite will begin to swell and a blister will appear. The following symptoms appear:

• Malfunctions of the heart.
• Intestinal problems (frustration).
• Annoying cough and runny nose.

Often, after a spider bite, tissue necrosis develops. It is promoted by the content in the venom of many enzymes. Necrosis of the subcutaneous tissue delays the healing process for a long three years. It is possible that the bite can lead to the death of the victim, which is often observed in young children and the elderly.

Precautionary measures

Although it is a poisonous creature and is non-aggressive, if it is disturbed, there is no need to wait for mercy: it will bite - it will bite! It is better to avoid this situation in time and to protect yourself from the deadly poison. To do this, follow the following recommendations:

• Carefully do the cleaning in the house, in time removing the web.
• Avoid the formation of cracks in the walls, if they appear - immediately gloss over or caulk.
• Before putting on any items, they need to be carefully examined.
• Before going to bed, you must also check the bed.
• There should not be rubbish and boxes under the bed, and it is necessary to place it itself not close to the wall.

If you adhere to the above rules, it is quite realistic to avoid the attack of a dangerous creature that can bring big trouble.

Help needed for a brown spider bite

When the brown spider bites, you should immediately do everything possible to stop the spread of the poison. You can put ice on the bite. Be sure to treat the wound with one of the antiseptics and, of course, seek medical help.

Previously, during treatment, the damaged skin was surgically removed. Currently, therapy is carried out with antibiotics. If a person turns on time, inject a serum.

Appearance and lifestyle

These spiders do not weave a structured web, and they usually hunt using irregular threads. Unlike most spiders, they leave their cobwebs at night.

Hermit spiders usually live in the fields, meadows, forests, but quite often crawl into people's homes. There they arrange their nests in secluded corners, and at night crawl out of them and examine the territory. Often they arrange their homes in bundles of firewood, barns, garages, and can also live in boxes and even clothes and shoes. Hermit spiders feed on insects as well as other spiders. Males hunt most of the time, while females usually try to keep closer to their web.


Brown hermit spiders are also called spiders-violins due to the fact that on their backs a stain resembling a violin. Their abdomen and head are brown, reddish-brown or yellowish.

The body size of adult brown hermit spiders is from 8 mm to 2 cm, the females are slightly larger than the males. Spiders usually live 1-2 years, although some females live up to 7 years. The area of ​​these spiders is extensive, it includes warm regions of the Americas and Eurasia, including the south of Russia.

The birthplace of the spider is Chile, but now it can be found in other countries of South America, as well as in North America and Australia. Some individuals of spiders were found even in Finland, where they most likely came with water transport.

Chilean spider has a rather large size, the paw span reaches 4 cm. It is one of the most poisonous spiders on Earth.

Danger to humans

Hermit spiders are one of the most dangerous arthropods on Earth. Although they are very poisonous, their bite often goes unnoticed. Usually, the bite resembles a needle injection.

The poison of hermit spiders is very slow, the first signs appear only after a few hours.

First, a burning sensation or a slight tingling appears at the site of the bite. The further development of symptoms depends on how much poison is in the blood. If there was a lot of poison, then after 5-6 hours The area swells and a blister forms.

Disorders of the intestines may appear, problems with the work of the heart, sometimes runny nose and cough. A few days later the blister bursts and a non-healing ulcer forms. The combination of symptoms after a hermit spider bite is called lox cosselism (from the Latin name of the spider Loxoscelesredusa).

Necrosis of tissues after a spider bite develops due to the fact that the venom contains many enzymes, such as protease, alkaline phosphatase, and others. If necrosis of subcutaneous tissues has developed, recovery may be delayed for three years.

The bite of a brown recluse spider can even cause death. Most often, deaths are observed in children under seven years old, elderly and weak people.

Яд чилийского паука-отшельника еще сильнее и часто приводит к почечной недостаточности. В Чили провели исследование, показавшее, что из ста случаев укусов смертью закончились три-четыре.

Пауки-отшельники неагрессивны и сами на людей не нападают. They bite only if they feel a danger or an encroachment on their territory. Often people are bitten because of their carelessness when cleaning. Sometimes hermit spiders climb into bed and bite people in their sleep. She can't bite through the clothes of a hermit spider.

There are several types of loznoskorpiona, but one of the most common is the book. A detailed description of this arachnid read here.

If you want to attract the best pollinating insects to your site, then you should know that these are osmium bees. How to interest them, read the link.

What to do when you bite

First of all, you need to keep calm and call a doctor. It is advisable to catch the spider and put it in a strong container. This will help the specialist to determine the type and degree of poisoniness of the spider. Then you need to try to prevent the spread of poison throughout the body. Ice is applied to the bite site, and the bitten limb is raised higher. The wound should be treated with antiseptic.

Further treatment depends on the severity of the bite. If after eight hours after the bite there is no blister, no severe pain and no signs of tissue necrosis, then serious treatment may not be necessary. If serious symptoms develop, it is sometimes advisable to inject corticosteroids. Dalson, heparin, nitroglycerin and other drugs are also used. With the development of severe necrosis, it is necessary to surgically remove necrotic tissue, and if a secondary infection has developed, treat it. The ulcer usually heals itself, but sometimes it is necessary to transplant the skin. If systemic intoxication has developed, patients are hospitalized.

In the habitat of hermit spiders, in order to avoid a bite, it is recommended to be attentive with boxes, carefully inspect clothing and shoes, wear gloves when working with firewood, and also close up slots through which spiders can crawl into the dwelling.

What does this little eight-headed monster look like?

The dimensions of this hermit spider are small. If he straightens the legs, then their scope is from 6 to 20 millimeters. This deadly spider cannot even be immediately noticed. Females are larger in size than males.

Male hermit spider

Body color is predominantly brown. But there are yellow and gray representatives of this species. On the top of the cephalothoid in a hermit spider is depicted something resembling a violin.

A distinctive feature of this species is the presence of only 6 eyes, instead of 8. The abdominal part and legs are covered with small hairs.

How to protect yourself from a hermit spider bite?

In fact, these eight-legged creatures are not at all aggressive, they rarely attack themselves without a reason. But if you disturb the spider ... for example, when he got into his underwear, and you started cleaning ... then you shouldn't wait for mercy - he would bite so!

Immediately after the bite of a brown spider, tissue necrosis occurs, that is, their necrosis. As a rule, an adult healthy person with a strong immunity, except for an unpleasant wound, is not threatened, of course, if you consult a doctor in time. But the little children and the elderly, as well as sick people are less fortunate. Their bodies are not able to resist the toxins contained in the spider’s venom as easily. Therefore, there have been cases of death.

Symptoms of a poisonous spider bite

To prevent the appearance of spiders in the house and to protect themselves from the deadly poison, you must follow some rules:

  • clean the house regularly, paying attention to the removal of the web,
  • caulk and cover up the gap in the walls,
  • check the things you are going to wear.

These actions can get rid of the attack from the cunning little creature that is able to deliver big problems!