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Black Widow Spiders-appealing to chickens? Options
#1 Posted : Saturday, January 24, 2004 12:53:14 PM
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Posts: 134,494
Boy Mamolina that sounds HORRIBLE! I did a quick google search for you (black+widow+predators) & found this stuff. They say that the males & babies are not poisonous & have a more yellowish tint to the "hour-glass" pattern rather than the red of the female. GOOD LUCK!

Control Measures
The black widow spider is shy and nocturnal in habit, usually staying in her hidden web. Although not aggressive, she may rush out and bite when her web is disturbed or when accidentally trapped in clothing or shoes. Many are associated with dry, undisturbed piles of firewood, old limbs, rock piles, bales of hay, wooden buildings and pit privies.
Remove trash, old boxes, piles of lumber, old rubble piles and other unwanted items from under or around houses and outbuildings. Do not go barefoot or handle firewood without gloves. Install screens on doors and windows to prevent entry. Seal or caulk cracks and crevices where spiders can enter the house. Wash off the outside of the house or building, especially around window wells and other undisturbed places where webs are built. Spiders are fragile and easily damaged, so sweeping with a stiff broom will remove webbing and usually kill them. (Use Caution.)
Since black widow spiders spend most of the time in or on webbing, thorough applications of fine particles of insecticides, such as ULV, aerosols or fogs, contact spiders in their webs causing quicker population reduction. Although pyrethrin is registered specifically for black widow spiders, other space sprays of resmethrin (Vectrin) are useful for clean outs in outbuildings, crawl spaces, etc.
There are many other labeled pesticides for spider control. Some are labeled for homeowner use, while others are labeled only for the licensed, certified, pesticide applicator or pest control operator. Homeowners can use amorphous silica gel (Drione, Tri-Die), some formulations of bendiocarb (Ficam), chlorpyrifos (Dursban), and permethrin (Astro, Dragnet, Flee, Prelude, Torpedo); diazinon, esfenvalerate (Conquer), propoxur (Baygon), pyrethrin (Exciter, Kicker, Microcare, Pyrethrum, Safer, Synerold, Uld, X-Clude) plus resmethrin (Vectrin). In addition, the licensed pesticide applicator can use bendiocarb + pyrethrins (Ficam Plus), clyfluthrin (Optem, Tempo), cypermethrin (Cyper-Active, Cynoff, Demon, Vikor), deltamethrin (Delta Dust, Suspend), lambdacyhalothrin (Commodore), propetamphos (Safrotin) and tralmoethrin (Saga).
Residual crack and crevice sprays of Diazinon or propoxur (Baygon) applied where spiders can hide and enter buildings, are helpful.
Outdoors, spray around the perimeter of buildings using formulations that will not damage plants. Treat under patios and decks if the house is of pier and beam construction. Baygon, Diazinon, Drion and Permethrin are frequently used.
Before using any pesticide, always read the label and follow directions and safety precautions.
. Alternating warm and cold weather in the winter and spring are detrimental to their survival.Mud-Dauber Wasps are natural predators of black widow spiders
#2 Posted : Sunday, January 25, 2004 3:54:10 AM
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Posts: 134,494
Chickens would eat them.

I believe the fear of them and their bite has been dramatized and it is not that great a problem. I think your chances of having a bad reaction are about the same as that of having a bad reaction to a bee or wasp sting.
I am basing this on my personal experiences as I have been bitten many times and haven''t ever had a bad reaction. ...May just be genetics though, as bee and wasp stings don''t bother me either, except for the initial pain.

I used to catch them and take them to grade school in a bottle. After letting the other kids see it was a widow, I would dump it into my hand and chase them around.

They like dark confined places, if you clean up any boards or anything else you might have laying around outdoors, close off under buildings, and keep your lawn mowed they will go elsewhere.
#3 Posted : Sunday, January 25, 2004 5:57:26 PM
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Posts: 134,494
Thank you for the fantasic info ajortolani! We have reduced the places they can hide by eliminating a few old wood piles. We are hoping that the crazy weather we have been having will also have an impact on next spring. Initially we used a spray that was for Black Widows but it only seemed to torture them. It took them days to die. I am happy to know that chickens will eat them. I would leave them alone because I respect them and think they are incredibly beautiful creatures but my three year old thinks so too, and that aint good!
dropkick-- It must be genetic! A bite from a Black Widow is gernerally considered dangerous. Its a neurotoxin that interfere muscle control and nerve impulses. The inital bite is like a bee sting but most people also are in serious pain for 24 hours or more. Sure, the likely hood of death is probably comparable to getting killed by a tractor on main street. Yeah, that one little chance is still to scary for this mom. Thanks!
#4 Posted : Sunday, January 25, 2004 5:57:26 PM
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Posts: 134,494
We are expierencing a problem with Black Widow Spiders in our back yard. I have to search my son's toys before he can play with them every time. I have found as many as nine in one day. I don't want to use chemicals and do not know of any other way. My mom suggested chickens. We live in a neighborhood that doesn't allow farm animals but I think I can get away with it if they will solve our spider problem. Can anyone tell me if they have ever heard of chickens eating Balck Widows?
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