What Does a Brown Recluse Spider Look Like?

Brown recluse spiders are most easily identified by the presence of a violin-shaped mark on the top of the cephalothorax. The neck of the violin points toward the rounded abdomen of the brown recluse spider. Another telltale sign of a brown recluse spider is the presence of six eyes arranged in three pairs. However, the violin marking is less distinct in young insects, and the eyes of a brown recluse are only visible with the help of a microscope. Further distinguishing characteristics may be necessary for proper identification.

Fully grown, brown recluse spiders are approximately the size of a quarter at their widest leg span. Although males are slightly smaller than females, they have proportionately longer legs. In their immature stages, brown recluse spiders resemble adults save their smaller size and lighter color.

Brown recluse spiders are light tan to dark brown in color. Their abdomens are uniformly colored and appear velvety as a result of numerous fine hairs. These hairs also cover the long, thin, brown legs of the brown recluse, but are not present along the spider’s spine.

brown recluse spider