Missouri Warns How to Identify a Deadly Brown Recluse Spider
Nope, nope and NOPE. The state of Missouri has shared a video warning how to know you're dealing with a deadly brown recluse spider and I already know way more than I ever wanted to know.
Don't blame me for this fun video moment. This spider documentary comes courtesy of the Missouri Department of Conservation. It's that time of year when temperatures drop and some of these spiders tend to be found inside more frequently. The brown recluse is one spider you really don't want to encounter. Along with the infamous Black Widow, this is one of the worst bites you can ever experience.
I've only had one encounter with a brown recluse that I know of. I was doing some fix-up to a house our family was trying to sell. In the corner were some loose boards. It looked like a spidery place and sure enough one of these bad boys made an appearance and came out from under a board to where I could see it. I could see the violin marking on the back and that's all I needed to know. Spoiler Alert: it did NOT end well for the spider. It was him or me and I chose me.
The Wikipedia page for this nasty spider also has some helpful tips for how to identify them. The darker the violin marking, the older the spider. The claim the recluse is not aggressive, but I'm not taking their word for it. The one I encountered came straight at me.
One comment from a woman named Jana on the Missouri Department of Conservation Facebook post is worth remembering:
Got bitten by one a few years back. The venom gravity fed into several places and took a year of my life to heal. I have horrible scarring now, and it was the worst pain I've ever had.
The bite of the brown recluse can vary from not really a big deal to horrific. Every person I've known who got bitten by this spider had severe skin issues afterward. This spider is just one big NOPE.