Black Widow Spiders
The glossy, black-bodied female widows have distinctive red spots on the underside of their abdomens. In L. mactans this spot often is shaped like an hourglass; in L. variolus it is not. Faint red or white spots may also appear on top of the abdomen, as they do in males. Only the sedentary female is capable of inflicting a potentially dangerous bite; the smaller, wandering, and seldom-seen male is harmless. This spider is timid and usually flees when disturbed, but it will bite if consistently provoked.