oa Journal of the Entomological Society of Southern Africa - A revision of the spider genus Loxosceles Heinecken & Lowe, 1835 (Araneae: Scytodidae) in southern Africa with notes on the natural history and morphology

Volume 38, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 0013-8789



The spider genus Loxosceles Heinecken & Lowe is known to occur in the Americas, Africa and the Mediterranean region. In recent years Loxosceles has featured prominently in scientific literature because of its medical importance. The bite of certain species is known to cause necrotic lesions in man which may vary from mild to very severe. As pain normally only develops some hours after the bite, it has been difficult to incriminate this spider in most cases. In the Americas, loxoscelism was first reported from Chile in 1937 when Macchiavello (1937) demonstrated how the bite of L. laeta (Nicolet) caused severe cutaneous necrosis.

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