Black widow spiders spread through Yucatán

The presence of the venomous arachnid has been reported at several places in the state of Yucatán

Black widow spiders are small and black, with a bright red hourglass shape on their ventral surface - Photo: Alex Brandon/AP

20/06/2018 18:05

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Yazmín Rodríguez / Corresponsal




Daly Martínez Ortiz, the Zoonosis Program coordinator from the Health Services of Yucatán (SSY), has informed that the presence of the venomous arachnid known as the black widow spider was first detected three years ago in the territory. On average, there are two black widow attacks on Yucatán citizens every year.

He expressed that, to this date, no diseases have been spread through the bite of this arachnid, which is mostly present in the south of Yucatán.

This animal is considered potentially dangerous to human lives given its powerful venom, which is known to cause severe pain, muscle cramps, and hypertension. However, only three cases of deaths associated with widow spiders have been registered in the world. Black widow spiders are small and black, with a bright red hourglass shape on their ventral surface.

Martínez Ortiz expressed that the Health Services of Yucatán usually treat around two black widow spider bite cases each year since it was identified in the State.

“In some cases, patients are able to recover from the venom intoxication without medical attention, but this can often result in after-effects and health problems. In the worst cases, it can lead to the patient’s death,” he stressed.

Martínez Ortiz said that the black widow spider is clearly not an endemic species, and it is believed that the species was brought into the region through product imports which usually arrive in boxes to the state of Yucatán.


He also revealed that the black widow spider has been spotted in places like Valladolid, Tizimín, Tekit, and the state’s capital, but none of these cases included attacks on human lives.

Martínez Ortiz claimed that, in the case of a black widow spider bite, as well as a poisonous snake bite, the victim has around two hours to apply the antidote and stop the venom’s effect on the body.

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