There are a lot of spiders in the world. According to an article by Nyffeler and Birkhofer in the Journal of the Science of Nature, there are an estimated 131 spiders per square meter of Earth, with more spiders being found outside of desert areas. So, for the 88 percent of Texas that is not considered a desert, there are spiders aplenty.
Fortunately, most spiders prefer to remain outside. If you do see a spider in your home, it is likely benign, however, there are some poisonous spiders in Texas. Specifically, three species are particularly dangerous. Identifying these Texas spiders and understanding their behavior will help protect you and your family.
Black Widow Spider
There are a few species of widow spider in the United States. In our Houston service area, the spider we see is Latrodectus mactans, known as the Southern black widow. This infamous Spider in Texas is jet black in color with a red hourglass marking on its abdomen. And, while it has a potent venom, it is seldom fatal for healthy humans. However, this spider’s bite still proves unpleasant. Not only is it’s bite painful, but it also leads to flu-like symptoms such as fever, nausea, and headache.
While this spider can come inside, it prefers to stay outdoors. You're more likely to find a black widow spider hiding in a pile of tree branches, peeking out from a pile of wood, or dangling from underneath a porch or deck. Wherever you see one, it will usually be in an overgrown area with plenty of places to hide.
Inside a home, you're likely to find the black widow in your attic, basement, storage closet, or garage. They do not like open areas and tend to stay away from people.
Brown Recluse Spider
In the Houston area and throughout East Texas, the recluse spider most often identified is the Loxosceles reclusa. It is a brown, hairless spider, with a dark brown violin shape on its back. This identifying marking led to its nickname of fiddleback spiders or violin spiders. They are a little larger than a quarter when they are fully grown, but spiderlings can be much smaller.
Like the black widow spider, brown recluse are poisonous spiders in Texas known for their harmful venom. Most of the time, a brown recluse bite results in flu like symptoms such as fever, nausea, and fatigue. However, in some cases, a bite from this spider leads to destruction of skin tissue and disfigurement. Therefore, to be safe, a bite from a brown recluse warrants a visit to a doctor or medical professional.
As their name suggests, these spiders are reclusive by nature. Bites usually occur when one of these spiders feels trapped or threatened. Recluse like to hide in holes and therefore will tuck themselves into perceived protected areas such as shoes, clothing, or under the covers of your bed. Therefore, make it a habit to check your clothing, footwear, or bedding for these spiders hiding in your Texas home.
Texas Brown Tarantula
These large, hairy, brown spiders scare most people. Despite their size and grotesque appearance, they are not as dangerous as they look. Like the other poisonous spiders in Texas, they will only bite if they feel threatened, and a bite from a Texas brown tarantula is about as painful as a bee sting for most people. Some people, however, have an allergic reaction to their venom. If you’re bitten by one of these Texas spiders and develop a rash, welt, shortness of breath, or other alarming symptoms, seek medical attention immediately.
If you're seeing dangerous spiders on your property and you live in our Houston service area, consider looking into our Modern Plus program. It is a year-round service plan that addresses a wide range of pests, including spiders. Modern Plus offers a home inspection, an individualized service plan, and quarterly visits from an educated professional who understands the habits and habitats of bugs and other wildlife pests.
Continuous control of a spider population revolves around monitoring the following conditions on and around your property:
- Reduce outdoor lighting - light create a high population of insects near the exterior walls of your house for spiders to prey upon. .
- Reduce moisture near your foundation by ensuring your have proper drainage.
- Eliminate organic debris and other harborages.
Eliminating a spider population requires a partnership between a homeowner and pest control company. At Modern Pest Control, we know the spiders of Texas, and we will work with you to find the solution you need.
For assistance with spider reduction or to start pest control service for your Texas home, reach out to us. Our QualityPro Certified team is looking forward to serving you.