Facts About Spiders | Spiders in Iowa

7 Facts About Spiders That Might Surprise You

January 22, 2018

Are spiders dangerous like most people think, or are they just another harmless critter? Spiders tend to get a bad reputation for being terrifying, but our pest professionals would like to set the record straight and provide you with some fun spider facts. You may be surprised to find out that what most people believe about spiders is actually false. With over 40 different types of spiders in Iowa and about 40,000 types of spiders in the world, let's discover seven of the most common mistaken facts about spiders.


Spider Fact #1: Humans are Not a Food Source for Spiders

Although many people believe that spiders are dangerous, spiders do not use people as a food source. The normal food source of a spider includes insects, other spiders and sometimes small animals. One of the main things that spiders do not eat, however, are plants. Although, in the last few years there has been a discovery of a rare "vegetarian" spider that mainly eats plant buds.


Spider Fact #2: Everyone is Not Always Within 3 Feet of a Spider

Dating back to 1995 by archaeologist Norman Platnick, who wrote "Wherever you sit as you read these lines, a spider is probably no more than a few yards away." This particular myth has been around for quite some time. With more than 4,000 species of spiders in the U.S. alone, there may be some truth to this, but an individual's proximity to a spider all depends on that person's location. If they are standing outside on their lawn or in the woods, this statement is more accurate, though there is still no factual information supporting this theory.


Spider Fact #3: Spiders Do Not Randomly Bite People

Many people who get an insect bite assume it's a spider, but these individuals may be surprised to find out these creatures do not bite humans at random. Unless they feel their life is being threatened in some way, it is very unlikely that spiders will bite humans, especially in the United States. You may be surprised to learn about an interesting study in a Kansas home where more than 2,055 brown recluse spiders were caught over a six-month period and 400 of them were large enough to administer envenomation in the people living there. Yet, no one was bitten.


Spider Fact #4: Not All Spiders Make Webs

One of the most commonly misunderstood facts about spiders is assuming all spider species spin webs, which is not true. The webs that are created by spiders are made out of silk, and the silk is used to help spiders capture their prey. However, only about half of all spider species catch their prey with webs. The other half of spider species either wait for their prey to come to them or hunt and catch it themselves. Spiders that hunt for their prey include:

  • Wolf spider
  • Jumping spider
  • Ground spider
  • Sac spider
  • Lynx spider and more!


Spider Fact #5: Placing Spiders Outdoors When Found in Your Home Doesn't Help Them

It is common to find these eight-legged critters around our homes or businesses at all times throughout the year. Many of us think we are being kind by placing them outdoors when we find them, but did you know that putting them outside in the lawn or garden may be worse for them? Most spiders found in our homes have adapted to life indoors, the odds of them surviving outdoors is very low.


Spider Fact #6: Not All Spiders are Aggressive

This common misunderstanding about spiders couldn't be further from the truth. Unless an individual is bothering a spider or they feel their life is being threatened, spiders do not pay attention to humans. Additionally, if a spider does happen to bite a person, the likelihood of it causing any real harm is extremely low. So are spiders dangerous or do they just appear scary? For the most part, spiders that jump, leap or are relatively large tend to be misunderstood and, in turn, terrify people.


Spider Fact #7: Spiders are Usually Most Noticeable When the Weather Gets Colder, Not in the Summer

Although it is true that spiders are common throughout the warmer summer months, these pests are more commonly found throughout August and September and until December. This tends to be due to a few big spider species, such as orb weavers and house spiders, becoming mature around this time. Since summer offers these critters low-moisture availability, this season tends to be their prime, but they start to be seen inside as the weather cools down.

Problems With Spiders in Iowa? Preferred Pest Control Can Help!

Spiders tend to be terrifying to many individuals, and they can be a nuisance to many homeowners and businesses. If you find yourself with a spider infestation on your hands, it is important to make an appointment with a pest professional immediately! Preferred Pest knows all about spiders and can take care of the problem. For fast and efficient spider control, schedule an appointment online or call us at (515) 276-7277.

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