My family and I were visiting auntie in Florida. We had an encounter with a giant of a spider at her home; his body was the size of a small dinner plate.
The legs of this giant seemed like they spread at least ten inches. In auntie’s home, the heating and air condition unit had vents at the tops of the walls where the wall met the ceiling. While hubby, kids, and auntie watched television in the Florida room, I decided to go into our bedroom and put on pajamas.
As I turned to get something, my attention was drawn to the vent in the bedroom just in time to see a leg crawl inside the vent. I yelled at my hubby to come and check the vent out because I saw a leg go into the vent. He got a chair and crawled up to the vent.
He looked into the vent and said, “I do not see anything.” As quick as a wink of an eye, a spider flew out of the vent right towards my husband’s face, over his head, and landed on the bed. Hubby nearly fell off the chair, trying to get out of the way.
The rest of the family ran into the bedroom to see what was happening. Auntie heard, “Spider,” so she grabbed her broom and dustpan.
Auntie (89) years young and started to beat this oversized spider right there on the bed, killed it, and then beat it some more before sweeping it up in the dustpan. This spider’s new home was the trash can.
I made sure that the lid was on tight. We could never identify this species of spider and remain shocked to this day the size of this critter! Auntie then said, “I cannot believe that that little ole spider caused such a commotion.”
I wore glasses because I could see nothing without them. Consequently, I slept all night with glasses on and eyes trained on that vent all night.
I was awake all night because I knew that there was no doubt more spiders in that vent where this flying spider came. Some species of spiders are indigenous to the state of Florida, and I sure do not like any of them.
Do I like spiders? That is a definite no! I do not even like to write about spiders. I am not fond of spiders of any size, shape, or form; I did decide to write about the 16 most common house spiders mainly to learn and be aware of certain species.
I hope readers enjoy learning about these 16 common house spiders and be aware of those that they need to stay away from. Learn what the more common house spiders are, no matter what state you reside, and know that each state owns a specific spider that may not live in other states.
American House Spider
This spider works hard to create a most amazing tangled up mess, better known as a cobweb. This species likes to create a web in windows, attics, garages, abandoned homes, basements, and buildings.
The American House Spider’s legs are long and skinny. The backs of these spiders host comb-like hairs. When insects get too close to the web, this spider flings strings of webbing onto the insect’s victim.
This spider bites the victim and injects the insect with venom, where it stays until the spider comes back to eat a meal. The abdomen is brown with white and brown lines and patches.
This spider is the opposite of aggression. Many times it may play dead. However, if you get too close or try to pick it up, it may bite, causing a painful site for a few days.
This spider’s bite is not lethal to humans.
The American House Spider is prevalent in many homes, yet homeowners wonder what species they are and if they are harmful, especially to children.
Black Widow Spider
Nearly everyone knows something about a Black Widow Spider and associates this spider with death after it bites because the venom from a Black Widow Spider is ten times more toxic than a rattlesnake’s venom.
This spider eats their mate, thus named the Black Widow. These spiders identify as black with a red shaped hourglass on its abdomen. Any state that is hot and humid may be the home of the Black Widow.
This spider is highly venomous and can make you extremely ill. However, their bite rarely causes death. If a Black Widow bites you, seek medical attention as quickly as possible.
The venom attacks the nervous system. This bite’s effects cause a wide range of reactions from only slightly ill to severe reaction causing pain, burning, redness, and welling. Sometimes you may see two fang marks.
The Black Widow is more dangerous to small children, seniors, and those who are ill. The Northeast United States, Texas, and Florida are home to the Black Widow.
Much as been said about the Black Widow Spider. Many fear the name that perhaps should not be feared quite as much due to the low incidence of death resulting from its bite.
The Brazilian Wandering Spider
This spider is one of the world’s most deadly known to humans. Children and seniors react the most to the bite. There is an antivenin available, and this makes death unlikely.
As soon as you are bitten, you need to seek medical attention. Its bite can be deadly to humans, especially children, although antivenin makes death unlikely.
Eight cousins fit into the family of Brazilian Wandering Spiders. Brazil and throughout Latin America is the home of this species of spider. These spiders grow up to two inches of body and six legs with spans of about six inches.
The body is a hairy brown color and may sport a black spot on the belly. This spider wanders the ground at night, aggressively hunting for prey. During the day, these spiders find a log or crevices to sleep.
This spider feasts on other spiders, mice, and reptiles. This spider, when threatened, raises its two front legs putting it in an attack position. When a male wants a female’s attention, he will dance.
Males fight over the female, and after mating, she frequently attacks the male. The female lays up to 1,000 eggs. These spiders live one to two years. Bites from this spiders causes,
- Severe burning pain at the site
- Sweating to coldness
- High or Low Blood Pressure
- Slow heart rate
- Abdominal cramping
- Blurred vision
Seek medical treatment as soon as possible. If this spider bites a human male, the toxins deliver a long and painful erection.
The toxin contains a chemical, nitric oxide, that increases blood flow. Medical researchers believe that this venom could help those with ED.
Many never seek medical attention because there is only a small amount of venom in their bite.
The Brazilian Wandering Spider is one of the world’s most deadly spiders, above the Black Widow.
Brown Recluse Spider
Most Brown Recluse species live in abandoned homes and empty buildings throughout Kentucky, South Central, and the Midwest. Cousins of the Brown Recluse, just as dangerous, live in Southern California and the Southwestern United States.
Like many other Spiders, this species keeps pesky insects away, such as flies, mosquitos, and other insects. This species carries a violin-shaped mark on its abdomen.
The bites of this spider can cause severe wounds and infestations. Their bites cause the tissue at the site to become necrotic (rot.) Some people have only a slight reaction.
Get medical help at once. This spider is not aggressive. The size of a brown recluse is about a quarter.
This species’ color is tan or dark brown with no other distinguishing marks except for the adults who have a mark on its back that is violin-shaped. This spider has three pairs of eyes in a circular pattern.
Their habitat includes under logs, debris, woodpiles, and rocks. They can live through cold winters and many months without food or water. This spider does not weave webs. They hunt insects at night.
As much has been said about the Brown Recluse Spider as the Black Widow. It is a spider to watch out for and avoid at all costs.
They say that the Camel Spider is not a spider. They look like a scorpion but are not, and there are over 1,000 varieties.
Some people refer to them as sun spiders or wind scorpions. This species grows up to six inches long, including the legs. This spider does not have fangs and is not going to cause the death of anyone.
Frightened or threatened, this spider can inflict an excruciating bite. This spider loves high temperatures that the desert offers. They also live in the grasslands or forests, avoiding cold temperatures.
They are not located in Antarctica or Australia. Most times, this spider-like creature hunts beetles, insects, termites, and anything they can capture. Some have even eaten small rodents, lizards, and small snakes.
The Camel Spider is not really a spider, which may surprise people.
Daddy Longlegs Spider
This spider is known far and wide as a spider species, but are classified as arachnids and fall in the class of ticks, mites, and scorpions.
Their whole body and system makeup are different from any spider species. Their color is tan or gray. They sport eight legs and have a small rounded dime-sized body.
Their legs help them skitter around—their behavior fashion after scorpions rather than spiders. This critter is not venomous, and they do not weave webs, have fangs or venom glands.
They have stink glands that they use when threatened or curl up into a ball and pretend to play dead. They hide in crevasses.
This creature uses its legs to sense smells, tastes, and vibrations. This spider loves to live in basements.
It seems no matter where you look outside or inside, there are Daddy Longlegs. Many have heard they are deadly which is a myth.
Golden Silk Spider
Also known as the Giant Wood Spider. They create a silk coloring that is gold and weave beautiful zig-zag web patterns.
They appear aggressive, but this is never found to be true. This spider’s color is greenish-yellow, reddish, brown, or black with white along the abdomen. There are stripes of white on the legs.
These colors help them to blend in with their surroundings. They have poor vision but sense vibrations. The male and female grow to one or two inches.
The female is longer than the male. This spider lives all over the world in warmer temperatures, especially in Madagascar and Australia. North Carolina and Texas are home to this spider.
They are found living around plants and flowers. This creature lives off of flies, mosquitoes, moths, butterflies, grasshoppers, and sometimes small snakes.
This spider has a potent venom, and their bite causes extreme pain. However, no one has ever died due to their bite.
The Golden Silk Spider is one of the world’s most aggressive spiders. Leave it alone, and it leaves you alone.
Goliath Bird-Eater Spider
This spider falls into the tarantula class of spiders. Its color is brown to black. Their set of fangs fold under their body and contain fangs and venom.
They have eight legs or four pairs of legs. This species is an enormous tarantula known. They measure nearly five inches with a leg span of up to eleven inches.
Their habitat includes the rainforest in Northern South America, Venezuela, northern Brazil, Suriname, Guyana, and French Guiana. It burrows under rocks and roots.
As a defense mechanism, they rub hairs together. This creature emanates a loud, hissing noise heard several feet away. They can fling hairs outward at attackers. They can raise their rear legs and show their fangs.
This spider likes to eat birds, cockroaches, mice, lizards, and frogs. The male dies after about two months of mating.
This creature is nocturnal and can live for ten to fifteen years under a pet owner’s care. The female can live up to 20 years. Otherwise, the males live three to six years.
The Goliath Bird-Eater sounds like a spider from the cave-man and era. However, they do help the environment. Stay away and stay safe.
This species of spider live throughout North America. They create a web that looks like a cave within a grassy lawn, low-growing shrubs, bottoms of fences, and structures’ crevices.
They hide in the back of these webs. This spider is fast and quick to catch its prey. The color pattern of the head shows two black lines running down either side.
The abdomen has a series of dark lines. Grass Spiders do not usually bite, nor do they have poisonous venom. The male is smaller than the female.
Lawns in front and back yards harbor many grass spiders, and homeowners are unaware of how many there are in their lawn.
No one knows how many Grass Spiders they have in their lawn. They are good at hiding and very innocent.
This spider frequents the Northwestern United States. They are medium brown. There is a stripe running down the center. Their eight legs are light brown.
The size is one inch to three-quarters inch, including the legs. This spider creates a web that looks like a funnel and is open at both ends. An escape tunnel is built in the back leading to a deep crack.
There are numerous reports of bites from this spider because they wander from June to October, seeking a mate. This wandering brings them into contact with humans.
These spiders live in holes, cracks, and crevices where they spin their webs. They are ground dwellers enjoying the confines of dark, moist areas such as basements, crawl spaces, and window wells.
These spiders can bite and create only mild skin redness and pain. Hobo spiders need to be removed through professional means and proper pest control techniques.
The Hobo Spider is in the class of the Black Widow and Brown Recluse, so one would think. They shy away from humans unless threatened.
These spiders can jump. They use this ability to catch their prey. There are over 4,000 species of jumping spiders all over the world.
Three hundred species are found living in the United States and Canada. These spiders can sport a black, brown, gray, or tan body. They have markings that can be in colors of red, yellow, blue, or green.
They have short legs. Adults sized spiders are one eighth to three quarters long. The adult Zebra Spiders have gray bodies with white markings on the front and abdomen with white or brown legs with gray rings fashioned after the Zebra.
Their eight eyes set in three rows offer low night vision. Four of their eyes are very large. These spiders can bite, but it is not a common practice.
Bites can cause site redness, stinging, itching, and minor swelling. Symptoms disappear in about 24 hours. If symptoms continue to worsen, seek medical treatment.
The Jumping Spider is a world-class jumper and may catch humans off guard. This spider is only jumping after its next meal.
I have a personal story about an Orb-Weaver. One spring morning, as I was opening the kitchen curtains, a giant spider web covered half the outside window.
I asked hubby to go take down the web, his reply, “Oh, when I get around to it.” I am not too fond of spiders, and I was not getting any action out of hubby. When my daughter came for a visit later that day, I asked her if she could remove that ugly spider and take the web down. She took a closer look and said, “Mom, that is an Orb-Weaver, just look at that beautiful and perfect web.”
The morning sun was streaming through the window, and the web was sparkling like diamonds and really quite pretty. I noticed how perfect a job that spider did and wondered if she worked all night because it was not there the day before.
My daughter said, “Mom leave her alone; she will be gone in the fall. I said, “By fall, do you know how long away that is?” I asked my daughter where the spider goes in the fall, and my daughter said, “She will have her babies and die. The babies will move on to more excellent pastures.” Even though I was not too fond of spiders, this spider quickly became special.
It was losing battle with the new tenant, Ms. Weaver, and it looked like she had a home for the summer. That window never got opened or washed all summer.
Every morning I would open the curtains, I would say, “Good morning Ms. Weaver.” I got to enjoy watching her rebuild and repair her web. Still, I was not too fond of spiders; however, I did like Ms. Weaver and missed her when fall came.
The amazing Orb-Weaver spider is found throughout Alaska, Hawaii, Canada, and the United States. They spin beautiful webs around light fixtures, tree branches, tall grasses, and bushes where prey is prevalent.
They catch small insects and reportedly eat frogs and hummingbirds. These spiders appear in the spring and are around into summer and fall. Males wander, looking for a mate, and the females stay close to the web.
After laying her eggs, the female dies at first frost. These spiders are docile and not at all aggressive. They do not harm people or pets and are beneficial to the environment as they catch and eat pesty insects.
It is not common for an Orb Weaver to bite unless highly provoked. Their bite is similar to a bee’s sting and no serious. They are active at night hunting and fixing their web. During the day, they sit solitary on the web.
Even though the Orb-Weaver is not the most attractive spider, it is an amazing creature to watch and learn.
This spider is known as the Australian Black Widow.
They have a round abdomen of deep black and red. This spider jumps and is one enormous jumping spiders known in Western North America. The male is not dangerous; however, the female causes serious illness if she bites a human.
Some bites have caused death. They rarely leave their webs, so the only way a human would get bitten is if a hand went into the web.
The bite is poisonous but not deadly. There may be pain around the bite site. The person may notice muscular pains, vomiting, sweating, and headaches.
Stay away from the Red-Black Spider as its bite, while not deadly, can cause you grief with illness.
Spider lovers may have a tarantula or two in their home. However, for may more tarantula’s give them a creepy feeling.
Their bodies are hairy and extensive as is their legs. They may look threatening but are harmless to humans. Harmless until they decide to bite. The venom they carry is not as toxic as a bee sting, making them a popular pet.
Tarantulas go through a molting process where they shed their external skeletons and replace internal organs. If a leg was lost, that regrows.
Typically these spiders live in the ground and enjoy tropical and subtropical regions. They are nocturnal creatures who hunt insects at night. They are known to eat frogs, mice, and toads.
They are not web creators, but they spin a tripwire to alert them when danger is near, or they caught their dinner. One large meal and this spider is suitable for a month without eating.
The Tarantula Spider is one popular pet throughout the United States. It is amazing how this spider can shed its skin and regenerate some of its vital organs.
This spider looks similar to a tarantula and has four eyes, two medium eyes on the head’s side, and two large eyes above a row of small eyes.
This spider is dark brown, black, tan, or gray with dark markings. Size varies from three quarters to one inch. These species are ferocious hunters with healthy eyesight and night vision.
These spiders eat insects, other spiders, and small vertebrates. Wolf Spiders live the world over and frequent meadows, grasslands, deserts, wetlands, rainforests, and mountains.
Some hide in leaf litter and vegetation, and tunnels. The venom from their bite is not potent or harmful to humans. A bite may cause some swelling or redness at the site but nothing major.
Some creatures rely on wolf spiders for their food sources such as birds, lizards, and rodents. Males live for one year at most. Females live for several years.
This is one ugly spider which is not entirely harmful to humans unless provoked, and it must defend itself.
This spider is not yellow, as its name says, and will bite humans on occasion.
These spiders are found throughout the United States. They love to hang out in gardens in the summer and seek the indoors’ warmth in the colder months.
A bite’s symptoms are mild, such as ulcerated sores around the bite, slow healing, and swelling at the site. No medical attention is needed unless the symptoms worsen.
The bite is similar in degree to a yellow jacket or bee sting.
The Yellow Sac Spider is essentially harmless to humans. They help to adorn the flower gardens.