RALEIGH, N.C. (WKRN/WNCN) – Changes in the weather means changes in the types of insects you may see, both inside and outside of your house.
And as temperatures heat up across the South, some viewers of CBS North Carolina’s sister station in Nashville, Tennessee, WKRN, reported brown recluse problems in their homes.
Dr. Frank Hale, a professor of entomology with the University of Tennessee, said this is the time of year when brown recluses are extremely active.
And if you find them in your home, chances are they have been there for a while.
Hale told WKRN he is not surprised more people are reporting cases of the spiders in their homes.
Hale said this is the time of year people often unknowingly bring the venomous crawlers inside their homes.
“I always tell people if you’re getting boxes from that attic, your grandmother’s house, or something like that you should inspect those boxes,” he said.
But in North Carolina, the chances of someone encountering a brown recluse are low, according to N.C. State University.
While some maps show the brown recluse as only being found in the westernmost tip of North Carolina – they can be found across the state.
While feared, the brown recluse is not aggressive and will only bite when it feels threatened, N.C. State said.
Hale said the spiders like to hide in reclusive places, but this is the time of year they come out of hiding to prey on insects.
A bite from one of the venomous spiders can be serious and, in rare cases, deadly.
“In the worst case scenario, some people have actually died from this. I know a child in Middle Tennessee who got septicemia, but that is extremely rare,” said Hale.
N.C. State said two children are documented as being bitten by a brown recluse in North Carolina.
Nashville country star Meghan Linsey has been out spoken about her scary experience after getting a brown recluse spider bite on her face.
She posted images on social media that showed her face swelled to the point where her eye nearly closed.
“I had a stinging sensation on my face, and I looked in my right hand and I was holding a dead spider,” Linsey said in an interview in April with ABC News.
To test your house for venomous brown recluse spiders, you can purchase sticky test strips at any home improvement store. They cost about a dollar and you simply place them in the corners of your home.
Hale put the sticky glue traps around his office and discovered he has a brown recluse spider problem.
“Fortunately, no one has ever gotten bit, but we are monitoring them with sticky traps,” he said.
You’ll know it is a brown recluse spider if it has a violin or fiddle shaped mark on its back.
“Another thing we look for, most spiders tend to have eight eyes. These have three pairs of eyes. These have six eyes,” said Dr. Hale.
If you find brown recluse spiders in your home, you will need to contact pest control and your home will need a few treatments.