If you suffer from arachnophobia, then you are one of nearly 19 million Americans who suffer from a specific phobia. Truth is, most spiders are beneficial to our homes and environment because their diets consist of the insects that pester us all year long. In fact, only about 12 spider species out of 40,000 spider species can cause any real harm to adult human beings. Here in the great state of Kentucky, there are only two spiders that you should be cautious of. Most of the spiders we have here are relatively harmless and are just doing their jobs in keeping the bug populations down. Today we will be discussing which spiders you should watch out for, and which ones are harmless to you.
Most Common Harmless House & Garden Spiders
Grass Spider-If you go wandering through a slightly overgrown lawn in Kentucky, you are very likely to find a grass spider lurking in the vicinity. Grass spiders build distinct large, funnel-like webs and prefer the outdoors mostly. They do, however, occasionally wander into homes. You can identify these spiders by the large spinnerets on the hind quarters of their abdomen. They look like two little needles sticking out of the back of their abdomens. They are about the size of a quarter, body and legs included, and are brown in color with distinctive gray or tan longitudinal stripes on their bodies. These guys are harmless and just waiting for bugs to pass by for a quick meal.
American House Spider– American house spiders (AHS) are found all over Kentucky and are extremely common around these parts. They take up residence in homes and rarely ever leave their webs. They build cobweb type webs and wait for prey to come to them and get tangled in their webs. AHS are about the size of a nickel, body and legs included. They are brown and tan with dark brown patterning on their bodies and have big, round abdomens. They are harmless to humans except in those with allergies to them.
Black Widow Spider– Watch out for the black widow spider. Adults are easily identifiable by their jet black, shiny bodies. Female black widows have prominent red markings on the underside of their abdomens, and males have some white markings. They have large round abdomens and measure about a half inch in length. Juveniles can be harder to identify as their colors widely vary. Black widows are venomous, their bites require immediate medical attention. They are most commonly found outdoors in rock piles, sheds, wood piles, cracks or voids in walls or any other discreet location.
Brown Recluse Spider– Measuring about the size of a quarter, they come in a tan to dark brown color on their abdomens and their legs are solidly colored with no banding, stripes or mottling. Unlike other spiders which have eight eyes, the brown recluse only has 6. Adults have a darker, violin shaped marking on their backs. Their bites are serious as well and require immediate medical attention. Just as their name states, these spiders like to stay in hidden areas that are not frequented with a lot of pet or human activity. Attics, basements, storage sheds, wood piles etc. They tend to stay in groups as well, where you find one there will likely be more.
Wolf Spider– These are probably the most common spiders you will find wandering in an around your home. Unlike other spiders, the wolf spider is not a web builder. They are usually found running rapidly across floors at night in search of bug prey. They use wolf like hunting tactics to catch bugs, which is how they get their name. There are many different species of wolf spider and they vary in size from the size of a pencil eraser to the size of a silver dollar and come in various shades of light to dark brown. People often mistake them for the brown recluse, but they have very different habits. Wolf spiders are venomous and while they are considered non-aggressive, they will bite if provoked.
All-Rite Pest Control proudly been in operation since 1972. We offer our customers the highest quality pest control services and our technicians are experienced in handling and exterminating all types of spider species in the state. Call our office if you have questions, need help identifying a spider, or want to schedule pest control services for your home or business today!