Black Widow Spiders’ Food

Like most spiders, the food source of the black widow spider includes a variety of arthropods, including ants, caterpillars, grasshoppers, beetles, cockroaches and scorpions, among others.

Black widows process their food outside of their bodies. After prey is caught in the web, it is injected with digestive enzymes. They consume the prey after it has softened and liquefied. Following feeding, the abdomen of the spider’s body expands as its stomach fills.

Like most spiders, the black widow is capable of living for several months without food. Some specimens have been known to survive almost one year in the absence of prey.