If there is a spider season in Missouri, it would be late fall. Many spiders don't live more than one year, and they will mate in fall before they lay their eggs. This need to get out in search of a mate is one of the reasons spiders are so noticeable this time of year. Another reason is that all of the spiders that hatched from eggs in spring are now fully grown. And, a fully grown spider is a lot harder to miss than a tiny, baby spider. But, black widows aren't like those other spiders. Here are a few things you should know.
Black widow females can live between 1 to 3 years, depending on environmental conditions and available food sources. That means they don't have the pressing need to make babies in fall. But, that doesn't stop them from being a problem in autumn.
Black widow nymphs go through five to eight instars (development stages) as they move toward adulthood. In fall, young adult black widows will overwinter in buildings or sheltered places to stay safe from freezing temperatures. Although they have a sort of antifreeze that protects them from the cold, these spiders can still freeze to death if the temperatures get too low. And, since they can produce 200 to 900 eggs from a single egg sack, there can be several young adults attempting to overwinter in a single structure. That is why it is vital to make sure your home is sealed.
Steps For Sealing Black Widows Out
If you see a single black widow spider on your property, call a professional pest control company. It is unwise to attempt the following exclusions if these spiders are already present.
Do an inspection of your exterior walls and basement walls. Use a caulking gun to seal any holes you find. Look closely around pipes, utilities, and other objects that pass through your walls.
Inspect your door and window screens for any holes, gaps, or tears, and repair or replace those screens.
Inspect closely around window frames for any holes, and cover or fill those holes.
Move stacked firewood, construction materials, lumber, stones, and other wood products as far away from your home as you're able.
Remove any ivy or vegetation from your foundation and exterior walls
Keep your lawn trimmed.
Alter storage conditions in your basement, garage, shed, or outbuildings. Keep items in sealable containers and try to get those sealed containers off the floor and away from the wall.
If you live in mid-Missouri and you need assistance with black widows and other spiders, Rottler Pest & Lawn Solutions employs a team of highly-trained pest specialists with experience in excluding these poisonous spiders. This may not be black widow season, but it is definitely the time of year to get your walls sealed and your foundation treated.