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Pest Guide - Spiders

Brown Recluse Spider

This spider lives in dark corners and places inside the houses, and also under the furniture, boxes and books. It has a rather shy and nonaggressive behavior, although occasionally the Brown Recluse Spider bites human because they share the same habitat.

Bite occurs only when the spider is disturbed, accidentally touched, and when putting on seldom used clothing and shoes where the Brown Recluse Spider has decided to live on.

Its web is made of a loose and irregular, yet very sticky thread. It is only built as a daytime retreat and as an egg holder.

Brown Recluse Spiders can survive six months without food or water, hidden in their lairs during daytime and roaming at night.

This arachnid prefers undisturbed places, so the Brown Recluse Spider usually bites humans when it is caught between a part of the body and another surface, for example, when children are playing under house furniture such as beds and tables or in the garage. Bites also happen while a person who is sleeping suddenly rolls in a bed where the Brown Recluse Spider has climbed, or when dressing with clothes or shoes where the spider has hidden itself.

Like all arachnids, this type is also formed by a cephalothoraxes connecting the 4 pairs of legs and the abdomen.

Golden Orb Spider

Some spiders roam at night, others wander during the day, but this black and yellow spider never sleeps; whenever an insect is trapped on its web, the golden orb will attack immediately. It lacks a good vision, but it is extremely sensitive to its web vibrations. Males go in search for females (much bigger than them), and when they find one, they lay nearby, build their webs and spend time courting the females.

The body of a male spider may grow as large as 3/8 inches, and the female's is much bigger, One and 1/8 inches.

Both have an egg-shaped abdomen, shiny, crispy, with yellow (in some cases orange) stripes over a deep black surface. The cephalothorax is hairy; the legs are black with some portions of a yellowish or reddish tone.

Eggs are laid inside a cocoon which this species hung from their webs to avoid predation of other insects. However, this turns out to be ineffective to prevent the lost of eggs caused mainly by the flying of birds.

Wolf Spider

The name suits the spider well. It is quite a hairy, fast, and ferocious spider, but it is not dangerous for humans at all.

his arachnid can actually be found almost everywhere on the planet, in places with plenty of shrubs to hide, plants and, of course, many insects to feed on. Wolf spiders can be perfectly camouflaged with the ground, where rocks, rubbish, sand or dry earth and leaves have the same color of this spider.

As they can easily be camouflaged, they roam mostly on solid ground, running over their preys and attacking them with powerful quickness and strength.

With a 4 inch leg-span, Wolf Spiders are large in comparison with the average size of arachnids. Their skin is of a brownish grey color, the fangs are long, sharp and hairy, and the creature has indeed quite a fearsome aspect. However, chances are you will never find one of these at home; they are outdoor creatures, garden spiders that hunt by day without the need of a web because of their excellent vision (spiders rarely have good sight, this being the reason why they build web traps).

Black Widow Spider

Black Widow Spiders are extremely poisonous arachnids. Their venom is 15 times as poisonous as the venom of the prairie rattlesnake. These venomous spiders are found in warm and temperate climates all around the world. They live in dark places, in drain pipes, under logs and rocks, etc. Their bite rarely kills humans.

The female will lay 300-400 eggs. The spiderlings (baby spiders) are not poisonous but they are cannibals, eating each other.

  • Females are about .5 inches long, 1.5 inches when the legs are spread.
  • Females and males have a shiny, globular abdomen
  • Females and males are black and sometimes brown
  • Females usually have a reddish hourglass shape on the underside of her abdomen. Some species have a series of red spots and two crosswise bars on the underbelly.
  • Males about half the female's size, with smaller bodies, and longer legs
  • Males usually have yellow and red bands and spots over the back as do the immature stages.
  • Newly hatched spiderlings are predominately white or yellowish-white, gradually acquiring more black and varying amounts of red and white with each molt.
  • Juveniles of both sexes resemble the male and are harmless to humans.

Garden Spider

The most prominent time for a garden spider is during the fall. The main difference between the variations of the garden spider mostly has to do with their appearance and there are in fact quite a few similarities.

The garden spiders weave large flat webs suspended between plants, across paths, along window and door frames. They are generally found outdoors, although they may find their way indoors as fall progresses to winter. Some garden spiders tend to prefer wooded and shrubby areas, while others prefer sunny areas around houses and tall grasses. The Garden spider is actually most noted for spinning webs.

There are many different types of garden spiders, however two common species are the European garden spider and the Argiope garden spider. The European garden spider is recognized by its large tan and gray body with mottled tan or brown markings across the back, which is also highlighted by five or more large white dots forming a cross like shape. The Argiope usually is yellow or black with two rows of three white spots along its back. The Argiope also spins their web with a very unusual zigzag pattern in the center of it.

Grass Spider

Grass Spiders, also called Funnel Spiders, are common sights throughout North American summers and belong to a family of Funnel Web Weavers. Males are smaller than females. What gives these little arachnids their namesake is the web funnels that they create in the grass or in crevices of buildings, fences or low-lying foliage. Unknowing insects can wander into the opening of the funnel and become entangled, triggering telegraph lines for the spider to respond to. The speedy Grass Spider can then pounce on the prey and eat it at its leisure. Grass Spiders will lay their eggs sacs against trees or other supportive structures and ultimately yield a bounty of hatchlings that will scurry about and build individual nests apart from one another by the Spring. Adults generally reach sizes of .59 in to .79 in.