Out in nature, spiders are beneficial because of the number of nuisance insects they feed on. They are arachnids and have eight legs, two body parts, and fangs. They are wingless and also lack antennae. Even though many people are fearful of spiders and their bites, spiders are not aggressive; in fact, they are shy reclusive creatures that want to stay out of sight. Some of the most common species of spiders living in our region include cellar spiders, orb weaver spiders, house spiders, tarantulas, wolf spiders, funnel weaver spiders, grass spiders, jumping spiders, hourglass spiders, western black widow, and woodlouse (crustacean).
Most of the spiders that live in our area and that people come into contact with across the country are nuisance spiders. The venom they use to paralyze their prey is not strong enough to create health problems in people. Those spiders considered dangerous, do have venom, which is strong enough to cause health problems. The western black widow is an example of a dangerous spider that people need to avoid.
Spiders prefer to live outside in sheltered and secluded areas, but do find their way into our homes, usually while hunting or seeking a safe place to place their eggs. Inside, spiders live in low traffic areas like basements, attics, closets, under furniture, in cabinets, and the corners of windows and doors.
Spider Prevention Tips
To make your yard less attractive to spiders, remove excess debris, keep the grass cut short, and trim back overgrown shrubs. Also, cut back thick vegetation away from your exterior walls and store woodpiles away from your house. To keep spiders out of your home, seal up cracks in the foundation and exterior walls. Also, place mesh covers over vents and drains and seal spaces around utilities like wires and pipes that enter into your home.