The northern black widow has taken up residence in southern Quebec, according to a new study published Wednesday.
According to researchers from the Insectarium, McGill University and the University of Quebec at Rimouski, the spider was discovered in the wild at three different locations in southern Quebec and Ottawa. These findings confirmed the predictions made by scientists from modeling techniques.
According to the researchers, this species of black widow could be found throughout southern Quebec, as far as Lake Saint-Pierre.
The arachnid does not pose any real danger for humans. According to the researchers, she bites very rarely and the amount of venom she injects is minimal. In addition, she tends to flee humans, which represent a danger for her.
As its name suggests, the black widow of the north is black in color and has an hourglass pattern interspersed in the middle under her abdomen. She also wears a series of red dots, and sometimes pale lines on the dorsal portion of her abdomen. The web she weaves is irregular.
The black widow of the north hides in reclusive and dark places, especially under old stumps, in cavities and recesses of buildings.
The study also included a threatened species of mygale, Sphodros niger. This spider was observed as far east as Belleville between Kingston and Toronto. If it has not yet been observed in Quebec, the researchers believe that the conditions of its habitat could be present.