Brown Widow Spider

AmeriGuard Pest Defense receives daily calls for spider control services. According to, spiders rank high on the list of Top 10 Fears.  Most people fear the black widow spider because of its toxic venom. However, the brown widow spider (latrodectus geometricus) is also of significance and is gaining a foothold, especially in Southern California locations, according to this LA Times article.

Brown Widow Spider History

Unlike the black widow spider, the brown widow spider is NOT native to the United States and for years was confined to the state of Florida. However, in 2000, the brown widow spider gained a foothold in Southern California and is now common throughout Los Angeles, San Diego and southwest Riverside counties.

Brown Widow Appearance, Habitat & Photos

The brown widow spider’s appearance is a combination of tan and brown mottling with an orange hourglass located on the underside of the abdomen. The brown widow spider’s legs are striped. Webs of the brown widow spider are usually constructed in secluded and protected areas around homes. Although brown widow spider webs are usually hidden out of the plain sight, they are usually constructed near dwellings spaces, unlike black widows that build their webs in wood piles and dark corners in garages. Brown widow spiders are more likely to be found hiding under patio furniture, the underside of potted plants, up inside of the handles of garbage cans and other household items stored outside.

In the below picture, a brown widow spider was found by one of our pest control technicians.

Brown Widow Spider

Brown Widow Spider

This map shows the Distribution of Brown Widow Spiders in California. Notice the area of Southwest Riverside county is affected.

Brown Widow Spider California

Brown Widow Spider Bites

According to the University of California, Riverside, the brown widow spider venom is just as toxic as that of its black widow relative. However, the brown widow spider is not capable of injecting as much venom when it bites. Therefore, the brown widow spider bite is minor when compared to the bite of a black widow spider. Two of the common side effects from a brown widow spider bite are 1) pain at the bite location (comparable to most household spider bites) and 2) redness at the bite site.

Avoiding Brown Widow Spiders

Since brown widow spiders spin webs in protected areas, the below tips might prove useful:

  • Reduce excess storage and clutter around your home and in the garage
  • Store infrequently used items in sealed plastic bags (gardening gloves, shoes, sports equipment, etc.)
  • Inspect the undersides of potted plants and garbage receptacle handles and play equipment

Schedule a Spider Control Service

Spiders are considered a General Pest and are included in a General Pest Control Service provided by AmeriGuard Pest Defense. General Pest Control services are available on a One-Time, Bi-Monthly or Quarterly basis. Call our office at (951) 652-0505 for a free, no-obligation quote. We look forward to answering your spider questions and working toward spider control at your home or business.