Serving the Topeka / Lawrence Areas Since 1985

Larry and Sheryl Miller - Owners

 (785) 862-7378 Topeka     (785) 749-0965 Lawrence

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BROWN RECLUSE (Loxosceles reclusa) - Brown recluse spiders are considered to be one of the most dangerous spiders in the United States.  Brown recluse spiders are also known as violin or fiddle back spiders because of the dusky maculation of the carapace.

Brown recluse spiders are extremely common in northeast Kansas, where they are believed to be present in as many as 90% of all homes.  The Brown Recluse spider searches for food, such as fire brats, cockroaches, crickets or other soft-bodied insects at night.  At first light, wandering spiders will normally return to their retreat of an irregularly spun-off white web with their prey.  However, spiders will crawl into shoes, trousers, or other clothing removed at night to be worn the next day.  People are most commonly bitten in bed, dressing or cleaning storage areas.  Webs are commonly found in clothing, sacks, corners, walls, ceilings or other undisturbed areas.  In the outdoors or cooler weather, the Brown Recluse spider will spin a cocoon-like web for a retreat shelter.  The Brown Recluse can survive long periods without food.

SPIDER CONTROL - The first step to controlling the Brown Recluse is the use of sticky traps to monitor for activity.  In areas where activity is observed, several non-chemical measures can be taken to effectively control the problem.  Outdoors, removal of cover such as debris, stones, brick , concrete blocks, loose bark, wood or lumber piles and other materials will help to reduce the spiders by disrupting their natural habitat.  Good sanitation and housekeeping practices indoors are vital for the success of complete pest management program.  Good sanitation practices should include regular trash removal and discarding old boxes, old clothing and other seldom or unused items.  It is important to dust and vacuum frequently around windows, corners of rooms, shelves, under furniture, behind mirrors and pictures.  Rubber gloves and other protective clothing should be worn in areas suspected of brown recluse or black window infestations. 

Typically, an initial treatment with an insecticide suitable for spider control is an important step.  Longer term, periodic treatments to eliminate other insects the spiders feed on is recommended.

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