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Several species of spiders found in Virginia have fearsome reputations for giving painful bites resulting in life-threating complications. All spiders use venom to kill their prey, but many spiders are not nearly as aggressive or dangerous as they are presented in urban legends and the media. Spider identification requires specialized knowledge and sufficient magnification. Many harmless species are mistakenly identified as being dangerous due to a lack of a lack of training or a good microscope.
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February 10, 2020