Arizona is home to dozens of different species of spiders and other arachnids. Many are harmless, but some pose a serious threat to humans and animals, therefore it's important to contact a pest control professional if you suspect you have venomous bugs on your property.
Arizona Brown Spiders
Arizona does not have the infamous brown recluse (Loxosceles reclusa) spider but it does have many other species, including the closely related Loxosceles species collectively known as Arizona brown spiders, which are also venomous. These spiders are often found in homes, and some of their favorite hiding places are in clothes or bedding.
Arizona brown spiders have two body segments, eight legs, a distinct violin shaped marking on top of their heads, 3 sets of eyes, long thin legs, and they are light brown color.
Arizona brown spiders build irregular webs that frequently include a shelter consisting of a disorderly thread. Their webs are often found in woodpiles, sheds, closets, garages, plenum, cellars, and other places that are dry and generally undisturbed. When dwelling in human residences they seem to favor cardboard, possibly because it mimics the rotting tree bark which they inhabit naturally.
They have also been encountered in shoes, inside dressers, in bed sheets of infrequently used beds, in clothes stacked or piled or left lying on the floor, inside work gloves, behind baseboards and pictures, in toilets, and near sources of warmth when ambient temperatures are lower than usual. Human-recluse contact often occurs when such isolated spaces are disturbed and the spider feels threatened.
Unlike most web weavers, they leave their lairs at night to hunt. Males move around more when hunting than do females, which tend to remain nearer to their webs.
The bite of this spider is potentially dangerous to humans: reportedly some have suffered amputation and even death as the result of bites. Although sometimes the bite causes little harm, the most common reaction is a spreading sore at the site of the bite, which, if untreated, may result in permanent tissue damage. Those who suspect an Arizona brown spider bite should see a physician.
Black Widow Spiders
Arizona is home to the black widow spider, considered the most venomous spider in North America. Male and juvenile black widows are actually harmless, but female black widow spiders pose a threat to humans because they are aggressive and particularly protective of their eggs.
Black widow spiders have shiny, round abdomens, and females are easy to recognize thanks to the red hourglass-shaped markings on their abdomens.
They spin webs close to the ground in cluttered or protected areas, such as woodpiles, beneath stones, or amid clutter in basements and storage areas.
Bites from black widow spiders rarely prove fatal, but they can induce high fevers, nausea and increased blood pressure, and they do require medical treatment.
You can avoid black widow spider bites by clearing clutter, wearing protective gloves and clothing when working in garages or sheds, and by storing firewood at least 5 feet away from your home. If you suspect you have black widow spiders on your property, you should contact pest control experts to safely remove them and recommend steps you can take to prevent them from returning.
Orb Weaver Spiders
There are many different types of orb weaver spiders in Arizona, and they typically weave round webs in gardens or near water. They often have bright colors and markings, and are easy to see because they hang inside their webs.
Orb weaver spiders only bite when attached, and their venom is usually harmless to humans. Because it can be hard to differentiate orb weaver spiders from other spiders, though, it’s best to leave them alone if you are unsure of the species.
Even though orb weaver spiders may look threatening, there is no need to remove them unless they scare you or your visitors. If that’s the case, a pest control expert can help get rid of orb weaver spiders and recommend ways to keep the spider population under control on your property.
Wolf spiders are fast-moving hunters that chase prey instead of trapping insects in webs. Because they move about when hunting, they are often seen by people.
Wolf spiders are relatively harmless, but the mere sight of them often startles people who spot them around their homes. Wolf spiders are big and hairy, similar to tarantulas, and can stretch to more than an inch in length. They are usually brown or gray in color, enabling them to blend into their habitats, but they can be darker in color.
They typically hunt their prey at night, and take shelter under rocks, woodpiles or debris during the day. If they venture inside, they usually stay close to floor-level, sticking close to walls or hiding underneath furniture.
Wolf spiders typically don’t bite people unless they are handled or provoked, and while they do release a small amount of venom, their bites are generally harmless.
To prevent wolf spiders from entering your home, you can seal cracks and keep windows and doors closed. If you need wolf spiders removed from your home, a pest control specialist can help capture them and locate points of access that should be sealed.
Arizona is home to about 30 different types of tarantulas. They burrow in dry soil, and feed on small insects such as grasshoppers, cockroaches, and beetles. They rarely venture indoors, but they often emerge from their burrows during monsoon season to seek dryer ground and prey.
The most striking thing about tarantulas is their appearance, as they are big and hairy. They are usually tan or dark brown in color, have two body parts and eight legs, and their bodies can grow more than two inches in length while their legs can extend another four inches.
While the tarantula might look scarier than other spiders, they are actually quite harmless. They only bite if they are handled aggressively, and their venom is unlikely to cause anything more than mild irritation. They can also use hairs on their body to defend themselves, and those hairs can cause skin and nasal irritation if released.
Because tarantulas don’t pose much threat to humans or their pets, there’s no real need to remove them from your property, unless you suffer from arachnophobia (fear of spiders). If that is the case, pest control specialists can help you get rid of them, and the best way to do that is to eliminate their prey – meaning other insects – from your property.
The best way to get rid of any kind of spider is to kill off its food supply. You can do this by eliminating other less bothersome household insects with regular a pest control service plan. Also, make sure you remove trash or debris (woodpiles, boxes, tires, etc.) stored around the home and seal openings in the home that could be entry points.
Call Conquistador Pest
Spiders are scary! Contact Conquistador Pest to help you with Arizona brown spider control and extermination. Our licensed and insured exterminators will identify problem areas and work with you to determine the best possible ways to solve issues. Read about the other Tucson pest control services we offer. We also provide termite control and weed control.