Spiders are pretty common in most homes. However, for a lot of people, the sight of them can dredge up the fear of creepy crawlers and arachnophobia. Spiders are usually attracted to bugs, which make up the majority of their diet.
Having a few spiders in your home is actually a good thing. They prey on other pests and control their infestation rates. They usually come inside to find food and to escape the elements looking for shelter and warmth.
Spiders gain access to homes through tiny window cracks, open doors, and also through small holes found on walls and floors. They are mainly found in dark areas of the house such as basements, attics, and closets.
Common spiders found in the house
There are several species of spiders that are found in homes. Some may be harmful to humans and even poisonous. However, a majority of common spiders are harmless. Here is a list of both harmful and harmless spiders that are commonly found in our homes.
- American house spider – These are tiny, grey spiders that have a round stomach, and their web is usually tangled in shape and messy in appearance. They are frequently found in dark and obscure places such as the basement and garages. They may also be found around windows where they catch tiny flies. This specie is not harmful.
- Wolf spider – They are hairy and appear to have grey, black or brown colors. These spiders do not form webs to catch their prey hence they hunt them. Sometimes they can be confused for tarantulas. There are over two hundred species of these wolf spiders.
They are normally found where insects are in plenty such as in the garage and basement. They prefer to hide in debris or under materials such as boards and may also be found in cracks or gaps around the house. They are not harmful since they prefer to hide.
- Black widow – These spiders are shiny black with red marking running through their backs. They also have a red hourglass shape on the underside of their abdomen. They are normally found in garages and dark corners in the house.
Bites from these spiders are dangerous and sometimes may lead to severe health complications. People bitten often experience strong pain, nausea, vomiting, and also muscles in the bit region can stiffen.
- Daddy long legs – This specie is one of the most common house spiders. It has very long legs and a circular body. They are commonly found in dark secluded areas of the house and form strong webs to capture flies and insects. This spider is not harmful to human beings.
- Brown recluse – This spider has a violin-shaped marking running from the top of its head to the rear end. It appears as brown and also has six eyes instead of the common eight in other spiders. They are normally found in unruffled corners of the house.
They can also be found in unfolded clothes and also inside shoes where most bites occur. The bites are harmful and cause death to surrounding cells which also causes severe pain.
- Jumping spider – One of the most distinguishing factors about this spider is the large, front, middle set of eyes. There are almost three hundred species of jumping spiders with each having different shades of color but the most common appear black.
They are normally found in dark areas of the house and are heavily active during the daytime. They do not build webs thus hunt down their prey. They are harmless to human beings since they do not bite.
- Hobo spider – The spider is brown with dark and lighter spots on the top side. They are generally found in unfolded clothes, inside shoes and on top of beddings. They pack a painful bite which can cause swelling but the cells around will not die and symptoms disappear after one day.
- Grass spider – It is one of the most common spiders which are tiny and brown. They have appendages at the end of the abdomen which makes it easy to differentiate from the brown recluse.
They are found around the house foundation where they set traps for small insects. They can also be found in dark corners inside the house. They do bite but do not cause any medical emergency.
- Orb-weaver spider – The webs that are normally seen in the house in the morning dew come from these spiders. They are brown or grey with a smooth body.
They are generally found in areas with a lot of flies around the house preferably around windows, doors, and vents where they can easily set their webs. They do not bite and hence not harmful to us.
- Yellow sac spider – This spider has a v shape on the abdomen and appears yellowish or beige. They are nocturnal since they hunt at night. They build their webs from silk and form it like a sac where they hide during the day.
They are normally found in living spaces around the house such as the bedroom and kitchen. They are also found on the ceiling corners where they build their webs. They normally do not bite us but in some instances, the bites can lead to hospitalization.
How do spiders enter the house?
There are two ways that spiders gain access to our homes. The first way is through any openings that may be found in or around the house, including any windows, doors, air vents, or any other openings in and around the house. Cracks and holes in the walls also provide an easy way for the spiders to get into the house. In addition to that, spiders may enter the house through gaps left when layering pipes, electrical cables, and plumbing works.
Spiders can also hide in common household objects that are brought into the house. Firewood, boxes, camping equipment, toys left outside in infested areas. Plants and cloths are also some of the objects spiders use to hitch a ride into the house.
General places where spiders use as hiding spots in the house
Spiders prefer different hiding spots within the house. Some are attracted to moisture and dump places while others prefer drier environments.
Plant materials such as flowers or herbs found in the house are a major attraction to spiders. These plants provide a natural setting for them to form webs and also plants attract insects which are the main food source for the spiders.
Dark and obscure places are another site for spiders to hide. The spiders may be found under furniture and closets around the house. Also, household objects such as carpets and mats can be a good hiding spot for the spiders.
Messy environments such as clutter of books, magazines, and kitchen utensils provide good hiding spots for spiders. They prefer untouched areas such as these to form webs and lay eggs.
Wolf spiders prefer to hide in cracks and holes found around the house. They are mainly attracted to these spots because they do not form webs.
The most common place to spot a spider in the home is on the corners of the ceiling in the house. These spots may not be a hiding area but good breeding sites and also provide a perfect ambushing area since most flies are found in these places.
Threatening species of spiders such as the black widow and hobo spider tend to hide under wood and rock materials such as plant pots found in the house. They require such an environment for them to lay numerous eggs and also for setting their webs.
The garage is the most likely area to find a spider infestation. This area provides the best environment since it contains clutters of materials that spiders use for nesting and also for breeding. The spiders enter the garage through holes, cracks, and the main entrance door.
Common ways of getting rid of spiders
Maintaining a clean apartment ensures that the spider’s main source of food is choked off. This is because as spiders feed on insects and bugs, they in turn are attracted to the apartment if there are scraps of food and other organic waste.
De-cluttering the apartment should also help rid yourself of these creatures. Ensure the house is well aerated and organized. Shift your furniture occasionally to ensure the spiders do not have enough time to spin webs on them.
While most spiders are harmless, in rare occasions, bites from certain types of spiders are known to have been fatal. Therefore, the key is to identify the types of spiders that have invaded your apartment. In case of a bite, you should visit the hospital as soon as possible. This is because while the bite may not be fatal, the side effects may be horrendous. For example, certain bites from spiders such as the brown widow are known to cause skin ulcers.