Although related to the Black Widow, it is a less venomous spider. It is not a particularly aggressive spider, but it can bite. The venom can cause illness in children. In adults, although bites cause discomfort, there are no records of serious symptoms. This species is adapting well to the British climate and there are reports of it becoming established.
The female False Black Widow is of similar appearance to the Black widow, a relatively small spider, the female body length being 10-15mm, the male only 3-6mm. The false Black Widow are shiny black and globular like the Black Widow, but they lack the characteristic red double triangle or ‘hourglass' marking.
The abdomen of the immature female has pale chevron markings on the dorsal surface and a white band around the anterior, but these diminish with each moult until the adult abdomen is black except for the band, now turned red.
DO NOT TOUCH!