Wildlife Enthusiast Lets Black Widow Bite Him on Purpose to Debunk Myths Surrounding the Arachnid

Most people have heard of the dangers of encountering venomous animals in the wild—specifically, snakes and spiders. However, one particular spider, the black widow, may not be as lethal as previously believed. Yet, it’s still a bad idea to encourage them to bite because the effects can be long-lasting. Either way, a YouTube channel popular for its daring encounters with wildlife has shown what happens when the spider does attack.

Black Widow Bites More Often Than Not, Just Cause Major Discomfort

Jack Schonhof of Jack’s World of Wildlife posted a video where he allowed a black widow to bite him. While he noted that the black widow bite wasn’t as lethal as people believed it to be, it’s still not suggested that people allow a black widow to bite (yes, we had to say this). Jack underwent two weeks of symptoms following the black widow bite, which included “the worst” lower back pain. In the video, Jack points out that it actually takes quite a bit to provoke a black widow. “Again, these widow spiders a very, very, very reluctant to bite. The only way you’re realistically going to be bitten by a black widow is if you pin it to your skin.” He explained. “So, if you’re leaving your shoes outside, check your shoes. If you’re leaving stuff in your garage that you’re putting on, check it before you put it on.

A black widow being squished by tweezers.
Photo Credit: Jack’s World of Wildlife | YouTube

Some viewers were not convinced that a black widow may pose no real lethal threat. “You didn’t change my mind about black widows. You still proved to me to avoid the h**l out of them.” Disclosed one follower. Meanwhile, others have commended him for his bravery and his desire to clear up misconceptions that people have regarding wildlife, such as the black widow and its lethal bite. Regardless, it’s still not a good idea to provoke a black widow because their bite is still venomous and can cause serious health risks. Moreover, there is always the possibility that someone has an allergy to a black widow bite. In this case, it can quickly become life-threatening.

A Mission to Educate Others

Incredibly, Jack doesn’t just immerse himself into the wild. He intentionally provokes wildlife to show people a first-hand account of what happens when wildlife retaliates. He has countless videos in which he shows his audience the effects of his encounters with venomous wildlife. Some include other venomous spiers, ants, centipedes, and even a scorpion. His bravery and compassion for the great outdoors has been deemed “criminally underrated” by his followers.

Numerous Misconceptions about Black Widows

As it turns out, its “lethal” bite isn’t the only misconception about the black widow. Some believe that a black widow spider might prefer to live indoors. However, this isn’t the case, and most of the time, when they end up inside, it’s by accident. In many cases, they’re found stowing away, in produce. The reason for this is that the black widow and other spiders feed on insects. Namely, those that destroy crops. So, a black widow found in produce can actually be a good sign because it means the fruits and vegetables may be free from other pesky insects.

Next, black widow spiders aren’t generally aggressive. Jack’s video shows that they actually take quite a bit to be provoked. As such, it’s rare for a human to be bitten by a black widow. In contrast, they’re actually docile beings who prefer to run and hide than to ‘fight back.

Advantageous to Have Around

Lastly, while a black widow spider bite isn’t ideal, it’s a great idea to allow them to hand about outdoors because they eat other insects that cause damage to homes, such as ants and termites, or those that cause harm to crops, such as fruit flies. When a black widow does make its way into the house, a seemingly better option than killing it is to release it. Grab a large mason jar and a piece of paper. Capture the spider in the jar and cover it with paper so it can’t escape, then find a tree nearby to release it.

While arachnophobia is a common fear, it’s one that only makes sense in certain instances. And can easily be overcome with education and a little more compassion for all the creatures with whom we share our planet.

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