Posted Sep 28, 2013
In my experience, black widow spiders are a joy to keep. My time with widows started when we found one in our garage that had to be removed. Instead of relocating or killing her, I decided to keep her as a pet. I set up a simple habitat consisting of a flower pot and a toilet paper roll inside a Critter Keeper. I offer her three small crickets a week in this set-up, and she has thrived in this set-up for two years!
Care: Keep your widow in a dark, low traffic area of your house, such as in the corner of a bedroom. There are no special temperature and humidity requirements for this spider, anything that is comfortable with you will be fine with her. Feed small or incapacitated domestic crickets (Acheta domesticus) two to three times weekly. Do NOT use wild caught insects, as they may be contaminated with pesticides or carry parasites. Field crickets are to be avoided, as they may eat your spider. Black widows are very docile and unlikely to bite, however, they do have a medically significant bite, so handling is not a good idea. Black widows are also nocturnal, so your best chance of observing them is after the sun goes down.
I would recommend this spider to anyone who wants a low cost, low maintenance display only animal.