Black Widow Spider
Two species of black widow are common in the Middle East, Lactrodectus
pallidus , occurring from Libya to Azerbaidjan, and Lactrodectus
hysterix , known from Aden and Yemen. In the Emirates, black widows
occur along the coastal strip and hide in rubbish or objects left outside
overnight. Care should therefore be taken when picking up debris etc.
Their bite is rarely felt but is noticed later when the wound starts
to swell and two tiny spots become visible where the fangs have penetrated
the skin. The bite is very painful and the whole body can ache especially
the legs. Other symptoms include shock, fever, nausea, headache, raised
blood pressure, difficulty in breathing and heavy sweating. However
most bite victims recover completely within two days. If bitten seek
medical attention and always reassure the victim. Treatment includes
intravenous salts and pain killers which alleviate symptoms.