Common Indoor Spiders and How to Deal with Them
Spiders are predators rather than pests. Here are some common indoor spiders and how to deal with them. Nearly all spiders are venomous, but only widow spiders (Latrodectus s pp.) and recluse spiders (Loxosceles spp.) are potentially dangerous to healthy humans in the U.S. A compromised or hypersensitive immune system can mean any venomous creature is dangerous.
Cellar spiders, family Pholcidae, are small-bodied spiders with very long legs. They build cobwebs in corners, often near the ceiling, and in garages, basements, and sheds. Disturb one and it make shake violently in its web.
Jumping spiders, family Salticidae, are small, hairy, often colorful spiders that hunt “on foot” instead of building webs. They have keen eyesight and are curious, but harmless, climbers that can jump good distances.
Barn Funnel Weaver
The Barn Funnel Weaver, Tegenaria domestica, spins a thick, sheet-like web from corners. The spider hides in a retreat, dashing out to apprehend insect prey. There are many related species in the family Agelenidae. Males wander in search of mates and may be mistaken for wolf spiders or Brown Recluse.
The long fangs and jaws of the Woodlouse Hunter, Dysdera crocata, often cause alarm for a person finding one, but these spiders are not dangerously venomous. They specialize in killing woodlice (aka sowbugs, potato bugs, roly-polies, pillbugs).
Longlegged Sac Spiders
Two species in the genus Cheiracanthium are often found in and around homes. They build silken “sleeping bags” where walls meet ceilings. They rest there during the day, roaming at night in search of insect prey.
Dealing With Indoor Spiders
- Seal cracks and crevices to deny spiders entry to begin with.
- Inspect objects coming indoors from outside.
- Use a commercial device to remove spiders without injuring them; or invert a container over the spider, slip a card beneath it, and then turn the container right side up, imprisoning the spider. Take it outside and release the spider unharmed.
Spider bites are rare events. If you feel you were bit by a spider or insect try After Bite for instant and permanent relief from itching and pain. If the bite or a wound persist consult your physician and monitor symptoms. Secondary infection in any wound can be far worse than spider venom.
Find more articles on how to deal with bugs and pest around the home in our Common Household Pest Series.