The black widow spider gets its name because the larger female sometimes kills and eats the male if he does not escape immediately after mating; but she is quite as likely to live on friendly terms with her mate.

The female black widow is one of the few spiders in the United States dangerous to humans.  It’s painful bite contains a poison that can make a person very ill, but a black widow bite seldom kills anyone if the bite is properly treated by a doctor.

Fortunately, the black widow is easy to recognize and can easily be avoided.  It has a shiny black body about the size of a large pea, and usually has a scarlet patch shaped like an hourglass on its stomach.

The black widow weaves hopeless webs under logs and in dark nooks in the corners of barns and sheds.  The female spider places her eggs in round silken cocoons.  Each cocoon may contain as many as 700 eggs. – Dick Rogers