The Red Widow ( Latrodectus bishopi)
The red widow spider (Latrodectus bishopi) is a venomous spider closely related to the southern black widow (L. mactans) and the northern black widow (L. variolus). Red widows are found in sand pine scrub and scrubby flatwoods in Central and Southeastern Florida. While these spiders can be commonly found in this Park, these spiders are considered endangered due to loss of habitat . Female red widows range from 8-15 mm in body length; males are smaller, sometimes very small (2 mm).
The red widow builds a large tangled web on palmetto shrubs but the very fine silk is not highly visible in bright sunlight. Its funnel-shaped, silken retreat usually is hidden within a folded palmetto leaf and this is where the female spider hides during the day. The last image shows a mother and one of her offspring.
I managed to capture an image of the spiderlings emerging from their silken egg. They were immediately able to produce silk thread and scramble around.
The red widow usually weaves a silken egg-shaped structure for her spiderlings but the shape of the structure can vary
A short video about this spider.
I had only seen the Red Widow living in Saw Palmettos until August when I spotted this Widow living in a Myrtle Oak. Notice the spiderlings above the silken retreat in the photo in the center. The image on the right was taken a couple of weeks after the other 2 images and shows a 2nd egg.