Brown Recluses primarily feed on insects, but they will bite a human if they feel threatened or are accidentally pinched against human skin. If bitten it may not be painful or even noticed at first, but being bitten can be very serious. The Brown Recluse is not native to the area, but we have heard reports from people who have been bitten by them, right here in Reno.
The Brown Recluse releases a potentially deadly venom when it bites which can be toxic to cells & tissue. Fifty percent of the time symptoms from a Brown Recluse bite will occur 12 hours after being bitten. The bite will look like a white blister with redness around it and can possibly cause a fever, rash, nausea, vomiting, and muscle/joint pain.
The other fifty percent of the time a Brown Recluse spider bite can cause necrosis where the skin around the bite starts to die, leaving a deep, open sore that will need immediate medical attention. Most cases of necrosis occur within 96 hours of being bitten. If the wound is left untreated it can reach up to 10 inches in diameter & cause other serious infections.
If at all possible, capture the spider (in a clear, tightly closed container) and take it to the medical facility with you so that it can be correctly identified.
Most deaths reported from a Brown Recluse spider are in children ages 7 and younger.
Brown Recluse spiders typically build their webs in dark, warm, dry places that are not often disturbed like attics, sheds, cellars, & basements. When dwelling inside an occupied humans home they chose cardboard or other sources of warmth like clothes laying on the floor or inside a pair of shoes.
A female Brown Recluse can produce several egg sacs in just 3 months, each sac containing about 50 eggs & they will typically live up to 2 years.
To prevent Brown Recluses from coming inside we suggest you reduce any clutter in unoccupied areas of the home & perform thorough house cleanings.
If you find a Brown Recluse spider we suggest you consider professional pest elimination.