McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK

July 9, 2013

Housing Authority sprays for Fiddleback spiders

By Rachel Petersen
Staff Writer

McALESTER — The McAlester Housing Authority recently found an infestation of Fiddleback spiders in two McAlester homes.

“We had two families with apartments that had Fiddleback infestations,” said Executive Director Joy Holloway during the July monthly meeting of the Housing Authority Board.

“First we made sure the spiders were Fiddlebacks,” Holloway said. “We gave the tenants sticky traps to catch the spiders.” When an exterminator confirmed the spider infestation in the homes were Brown Recluses, the deadly spiders were exterminated. “We paid $160 per unit to have the spider infestation exterminated from the homes,” Holloway said.

There were no complaints of tenants being bitten by the spiders and since extermination, there have been no additional complaints regarding the spiders, Holloway said.

Fiddleback spiders, also known as the Brown Recluse or Violin spider, have potentially deadly hemotoxic venom. “The most recognized feature of the Brown Recluse spider is violin pattern on the cephalothorax or in other words the location on the top side of the spider near the head,” according to “Recluse spiders are found in the south from California to Virginia. They’ve been found as far north as Nebraska, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, and Ohio.”

Contact Rachel Petersen at

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