Slideshow: 5 Common Spider Invaders in the U.S.

There are more than 3,000 types of spiders found in North America alone. Of those, some are more likely to be encountered in our homes than others. Browse this slideshow for information on the habits and threats of 5 common spiders in the United States.

  • Wolf Spiders

    Wolf Spiders

    Wolf spiders are usually dark brown, often with paler stripes or markings. They hunt at night and rest in sheltered places during the day. They do not spin webs, but instead chase their prey down.

    These spiders are big and hairy, giving them a scary appearance. However, they typically will only bite if they are handled. Because they feed on a variety of insects, these spiders can be beneficial guests in the garden.

  • Common House Spiders

    Common House Spiders

    The common house spider is the spider most often encountered indoors. They are yellowish brown in color, with a dirty white abdomen featuring several dark stripes meeting at an angle. They create tangled webs to catch their prey.

    These spiders are considered mere nuisance pests, and pose no threats to humans. They have a difficult time surviving in modern homes due to low humidity and fewer insects for food.

  • Jumping Spiders

    Jumping Spiders

    Jumping spiders are usually black, but can also be brown, tan, or gray, and usually have pale markings on their backs. They are active during the daytime and seem to prefer the sunshine. They have the keenest vision of all spiders and are excellent jumpers.

    The jumping spider bite is not poisonous and they aren’t considered dangerous pests. In homes, they can most frequently be found hunting around windows and doors where there is sunlight.

  • Brown Recluse Spiders

    Brown Recluse Spiders

    These nocturnal spiders are brown with a characteristic dark brown violin-looking mark on their back. Indoors, they typically hide in undisturbed areas. Closets, attics, crawl spaces and basements are common spots.

    The brown recluse will bite in defense, and does not bite humans instinctively. However, they are capable of injecting venom that can cause intense pain, blisters and open ulcers. Those bitten should seek immediate medical attention.

  • Black Widow Spiders

    Black Widow Spiders

    Black widow spiders are black with a characteristic red hourglass on their abdomens. They are active when the temperature is 70 degrees or higher. These spiders spin irregular webs, which they build at night near ground level.

    Female black widow spiders are known to be aggressive and bite in defense, especially after laying and when guarding eggs. Their venom can be fatal, but such cases are rare and can usually be prevented with prompt medical treatment.

Concerned about a spider infestation in the home? A licensed pest control professional will be able to assist in proper identification of the species and treatment. Use our zip code locator to find a local company near you. 

For information on spider bites, check out this article on what to do and when to worry.