Red Back Spiders
  Spider Information  

Red Back Spiders are found Australia wide and common in urban areas. They usual prey on insects but are capable of capturing large animals, such as king crickets, small lizards if they become entangled in the web. It is also common for large females to take stored food of other webs.

Female Red back Spiders are black with a red or orange stripe on the upper body. The strip can resemble an hourglass shaped. Females can live for two to three years.

Male Red back Spiders live around six month and do not construct any webs, but may be found around a female's web, especially during the summer mating season.

Red Back Spider Bites and Symptoms

Over 250 Red back Spiders bits occur per year and frequently over the summer months. The most common symptoms are local pain and sweating, nausea and vomiting. Since the introduction of antivenom for Red back Spiders no deaths have occurred.


Australia wide and common in urban areas.

First Aid for a red back spider bitesFirst Aid for Red Back Spider bites and other spider bites:

  1. Calm the patient and reassured them an anti-venom is available. The Red Backs venom moves very slowly. Do not apply any form of bandage around the site because it will only increase the associated pain.
  2. Wash the area well and apply an ice pack or wet washcloth to the site to reduce the swelling.
  3. Seek immediate emergency care for further treatment. Anti-venom might be needed, although it is usually not required.
  4. Collect the spider if safe to do so for identification.



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