Spiders aren’t just popular at Halloween

Nov 8, 2018, 08:47 AM by Fred Speer

If your Halloween decorations are still up, Clark, your neighborly pest control expert, won’t judge. Extending the festivities a little longer is not a bad thing – unless the spiders on your porch or crawling in your house are the real thing and not the cheap plastic variety.

Web-spinning spiders can be found in many locations in and around homes in California and northern Nevada. And while spiders are quite beneficial to our ecosystem, because they eat unwanted insect pests, they can give people the willies when they meet up with one.

What are some of the most commonly encountered web-spinning spiders in California and northern Nevada?

  • Common house spider
  • Garden orb weaver
  • Long-legged cellar spider (sometimes referred to as the “daddy long-legs” spider)
  • Black widow spider

Web-spinning spiders – except the black widow – do not pose a threat to humans, but are quite lethal to any unsuspecting prey that flies, falls, or is blown into the concentric circles that make up the spider’s web.

Spider webs – which are often regarded as one of the strongest natural fabrics and can be built and rebuilt overnight – are half as strong as a steel thread of the same thickness and more elastic. Spider webs are found in garages, carports, eaves, attics, sheds, around windows, and in other places around your home.

The black widow spider does not spin your typical-looking web, but instead will create a thick, jumbled looking cobweb that is usually close to the ground. Homeowners should be particularly aware of the black widow spider, as they are known to administer a painful bite when disturbed or threatened.

How can you prevent spiders from becoming a nuisance around your home? Clark offers the following tips:

  • Reduce clutter: Spiders seek out secluded, undisturbed areas where they can build a web to catch their next meal. Attics, crawl spaces, and storage sheds are prime spider web-building locations. Keep these areas clean and free of clutter – seal storage boxes with tape to prevent spiders from scampering inside.
  • Vacuum and sweep spiders away: Regularly vacuum or sweep windows, corners of rooms, storage areas, basements, under eaves and gutters, around doors, and around outdoor light fixtures to remove spiders and their webs. A spider’s soft body will not survive this process.
  • Give clothes a shake: Avoid leaving clothing and shoes on the floor, and store off-season items inside plastic containers where spiders can’t gain access. Shake out all clothing that has been in storage before you wear it.
  • Seal spider hiding spots: Spiders can crawl into homes through torn screens or cracks in the siding. Check these areas seasonally, as weather and changes in temperature can cause or worsen existing problems.
  • Take a closer look at packages and boxes: Inspect items such as plants, firewood, boxes of decorations, old clothes, sporting equipment, and grocery bags before bringing them indoors. Wear gloves when going through boxes or removing items from storage areas.
  • Maintain your landscape: Eliminate spider hiding places and web-building areas by keeping your yard free of trash, leaf litter, and overgrown vegetation. Trim shrubs and plants near the house to discourage spiders from establishing a foothold.

If spiders have become a problem around your home, call or text (800) WE-NEED-YOU (936-3339) or send an email to clarkcares@clarkpest.com.

Until next time, the pest management professionals at Clark Pest Control thank you for helping to keep unwanted pests out of your home.