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Seeing More Spiders This Fall? Here’s What You Should Know
The National Pest Management Association offers answers and advice for a spider-free home
FAIRFAX, Va. (October 7, 2021) – Have you noticed more spiders recently? Fall is peak season for many spider species making sightings more abundant throughout parts of the U.S. While spiders play vital roles in all ecosystems, they are not something one would want in their living space. To help consumers keep these creepy crawlers out of their homes, the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) is offering expert prevention tips.
“Plentiful rain in a region can cause insect populations to boom, creating more food for spiders,” said Brittany Campbell, BCE, Ph.D., staff entomologist at NPMA. “Spiders may also become more obvious this time of year as they grow larger, build webs and actively mate. In the spring when spiders emerge from egg sacs as spiderlings, they are inconspicuous, but as they continue their life cycle and become larger this time of year, you may take more notice of them.”
Spiders have lived amongst humans for centuries. While some may bite if disturbed, most species are not harmful to humans. However, there are two species with particularly potent bites that can lead to severe symptoms such as pain and swelling or an open sore at the bite site, redness, cramping, nausea, vomiting, fever, chills, tremors, sweating, and more:
Black widow spiders are black and shiny with a telltale red hourglass shape on the underside of their abdomen. This spider tends to seek out dry and dark locations. Female black widow spiders are known to be aggressive and bite in defense, especially when guarding eggs. In rare cases, black widow spider bites can be fatal.
Brown recluse spiders are light to dark brown, with a characteristic dark brown violin marking on their back. The brown recluse spider also bites in defense when disturbed and prefers closets, attics, and crawlspaces as they provide warm, dry, and dark environments. Severe bite wounds from brown recluse spiders may take longer to heal and can result in scarring.
Dangerous or not, most people prefer not to have any spiders in their homes. The best way to prevent spiders is to remove harborage sites. Keep garages, attics, and basements clean and clutter-free and seal up cracks or crevices around the home. Shake out and inspect shoes and clothing before dressing and remove webs around the house. If you're concerned about spiders in your home, contact a licensed pest control professional.
For more information about spiders, visit www.PestWorld.org.
About the National Pest Management Association
The NPMA, a non-profit organization with more than 5,500 members, was established in 1933 to support the pest management industry's commitment to the protection of public health, food and property from the diseases and dangers of pests. For more information, visit PestWorld.org or follow @PestWorld on Facebook, Pinterest, TikTok, Twitter, and YouTube.