False widow spider (Steatoda capensis)
Species: S. capensis
Scientific name: Steatoda capensis
Common name: False katipo spider, Black cobweb spider, False widow spider.
They are a spider with a body length up to 7 mm.
Originating from South Africa it is now commonly found in New Zealand. They can be f
ound under logs or any dark places. It is much more common than the katipo. They catch small crawling insects.
Unlike the katipo the bite of the false katipo spider is not harmful, but it stings and the area bitten aches for an hour. It may also cause headaches or nausea. Small blisters may occur around the bite site.
A young Steatopda capensis
A male Steatoda capensis with distintive markings.
Side view of a male Steatoda capensis
Sean Hann's 1994 paper (NZ J Zool: 21:2, 225-238) on Steatoda states S. capensis has a variety of possible markings, including a yellow band as in photo below.