Spiders may be creepy and disgusting to many people, but they hardly ever harm humans. They can be pesky, though, if they invade your home. While the following species are common spiders in California, some types of spiders can be found throughout the United States. When a spider infestation occurs in your home, it can be as a result of spiders coming in from outside, or an egg sac having hatched. Since spiders are shy, the hatchlings will quickly spread away from each other, and they’ll hide in dark corners, or even in the walls, all over the house, business, or the garage they live in. If you’re finding spiders in your home, you may be wondering what kind of spiders they are and if they are dangerous. Read our handy guide to learn about common spiders in the Modesto area and how to prevent them from coming into your home.
Cross Orb-Weaver (Araneus diadematus)
The cross orb-weaver is one of the most common species of spider in California. You’ll find them year-round in our area, but it is primarily sighted outdoors in the fall when they reach maturity. They have striped legs, in colors ranging from brown to white, even orange and red, but they all have scattered white markings on their abdomens. Cross orb-weavers tend to leave their egg sacs in rolled-up leaves or under the eaves of buildings. Their webs are vast and intricate and geometric shapes. Luckily, they aren’t aggressive and only bite humans if they feel threatened or provoked.
Long-Legged Sac Spider (Cheiracanthium mildei)
The long-legged sac spider has a plain appearance, being mostly white or yellow. These spiders have bitten humans, and people used to think that their venom caused necrosis or the premature death of cells in living tissue. That claim is now proven false, though their bites may still cause mild pain or swelling. Long-legged sac spiders have become accustomed to living in close quarters with humans. Even though they hide during the day and become active at night, these tiny spiders can always be hard to find. A lot of times, people will have encounters with long-legged sac spiders when the spiders rest in clothing that’s folded up in drawers. Can you imagine putting on a long sleeve shirt, only to find a spider inside the arms? Bites are painful but nonlethal.
Common House Spider (Parasteatoda tepidariorum)
Often mistaken for the brown widow spider, the common house spider is much less dangerous. They build their webs in dark, secluded corners of structures, seen year-round. Their light brown/tan colored thin legs allow them to blend into most surroundings. While they are capable of subduing prey larger than themselves (including small lizards), they will only bite humans if they feel threatened. Their bites are nonlethal and will cause localized, temporary minor pain at the site of the bite. House spider bites are not common but not impossible.
Bold Jumping Spider (Phidippus audax)
The bold jumping spider has brown or black coloring and a white or orange triangle on their abdomen. What sets them apart from other common spiders is their jaws, have a lovely iridescent sheen ranging from blue to green and even pink. Adult male bold jumping spiders have much thicker and hairier front legs than females, while juveniles have multi-colored banded legs. Rather than spinning webs, bold jumping spiders stay on the move and catch prey. They rarely bite humans but will do so if they feel threatened or are directly handled. A bold jumping spider bite isn’t lethal and won’t hurt all that much. Weak, localized pain around the bite will occur, but it will quickly subside. Fields, gardens, homes, and even cars can serve as a habitat for these hyper spiders that are almost always on the go. Because bold jumping spiders eat other small insects, they are mostly considered to be a beneficial pest rather than a dangerous or destructive pest.
Long-Bodied Cellar Spider (Pholcus phalangioides)
More commonly known as a “daddy longlegs,” the long-bodied cellar spider has front legs that can grow up to two inches in length. They’re lightly colored, in grey, brown, tan, or white. Their habitations are often in secluded areas like under leaves or rocks, or the attics of homes and other human made buildings. They are somewhat large but don’t let their size intimidate you. They pose no serious threat to humans or the structure of your home. It’s actually a myth that daddy longlegs are the most venomous spider in the world that can’t bite humans. Cellar spiders are actually beneficial for natural pest control in your home. Their diet can consist of much larger spiders that you’d prefer not to have crawling around your home, such as wolf spiders!
Western Black Widow (Latrodectus hesperus)
The Western black widow is not a pleasant spider, but don’t worry: its bite likely will not kill a human. The red or orange hourglass-shaped marking on its belly is its best-identifying feature. Females are usually larger than males, which are white or tan instead of black and hardly ever bite. While a black widow bite is not typically fatal, seeking medical assistance is vital to relieving more severe symptoms. Like most spiders, Western black widow spiders hide in dark, quiet areas of your home like in closets, garages, and among clutter.
How can I prevent spiders from getting into my house?
Spiders enter homes through small openings around the exterior of your home. Seal small cracks or openings and repair broken or torn screens and windows. Clean up clutter to reduce hiding spots where spiders and other pests like silverfish and mice can hide. We know it’s not possible to find every single crack and crevice because they are so tiny, which is why professional pest control is necessary if you don’t want spiders in your home.
How can AAI Pest Control get rid of the spiders in my house?
AAI Pest Control can get rid of the spiders in your home, whether they’re venomous, passive, or just a nuisance to have in your home. If you require immediate spider pest control, or if you’d like to prevent eight-legged creatures from living behind your refrigerator, give AAI Pest Control a call today.