First time posting as i've just found this spider on the balcony and am a bit concerned as its pretty exotic looking compared to the normal house spiders i see running around. I'm thinking it may be a False Widow (or a Black widow?!)? Any help would be appreciated.
If it is, what should I do, its currently in the box on the left. It does look very similar to the spider in the pic from this article, and that happenned just around the corner from here:
Yes, Steatoda nobilis. Though they can deliver a painful bite most people manage to live alongside them without mishap. They haven't got to my house yet but if they ever do and an adult gets indoors I think I would just throw it outside, but it's up to you.
Yes it's a False Widow and it is the notorious Steatoda nobilis, now one of six species of Steatoda or False Widow found in the UK. It is still colonising the UK but the southern counties remain its stronghold and their are hot spots where they are more abundant. They do occasionally bite if trapped between clothing and skin, much as wasps or bees will sting under the same circumstances. The bite does cause local pain and swelling and in a minority of cases more acute symptoms. The likelihood of being bitten remains low and the chances of banishing them from around your home or garden are even lower. They are here to stay but we shouldn't panic - any I find indoors I liberate outside, beyond that there's not much that you can do.
I wrote this yesterday evening but rather spookily I was interrupted by a female nobilis climbing up the curtains - in a few years that will be saying 'you are never more than 3 feet away from Steatoda nobilis' .... or is that rats ;-)