Gardener Paul Heafield of Colwell Road, Haywards Heath is wondering if a spider he found in a garden is a hybrid of the venomous black widow spider.
He says the insect (pictured) is not like a false black widow but does have two red triangles on its abdomen like the real thing.
He said: “It is worrying. I don’t think it is a Western black widow and it’s certainly not like the false black widow that I have come across up until now.
“False black widows seem to be prolific; I have never found as many as I have this year. I found one living in some fencing with a nest and bags of eggs.
“This latest spider has the red markings similar to a black widow but in the wrong order.”
Paul said the red triangles were separated rather than touching at their apexes as they are in a black widow proper.
However, he wonders if perhaps there is some mutation going on so that false black widows are taking on the appearance of their more deadly relatives.
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