Common Spiders in Massachusetts

Save

Spiders are eight-legged organisms of the order araneae and the class arachnida. They are well known for spinning webs and using venom (injected from fangs) to kill prey. Spiders will also occasionally bite humans in self-defense. In Massachusetts, some of the most common spiders include house spiders, daddy long legs, wolf spiders and black widows. Of these, people really only need to worry about black widow bites, as their venom is especially potent (and can even be deadly).

House Spider

  • The house spider, or common house spider (parasteatoda tepidariorum), is characterized by having striped legs that are alternating tan and dark brown in color. The main torso is generally a dark brown and is usually adorned with lighter-colored designs. As the name implies, house spiders are often found inside homes, especially in attics, basements and on ceilings. According to suttonmass.org, they are part of the theridiidae family of spiders, which are well known for making compact, fluffy webs in the corners of rooms and other structures.

Daddly Long Legs

  • While house spiders are one of the most abundant types of indoor spiders in Massachusetts, outdoors the daddy long legs is king. According to suttonmass.org, "daddy long legs" is a general term that is applied to various long-legged species of cellar spiders, which are of the family pholcidae. They are known to live in tree trunks and other organic materials, but can commonly be observed scurrying across lawns and through gardens. In addition to being long, the legs of the daddy long legs are incredibly thin and delicate.

Wolf Spider

  • Wolf spiders are in the lycosidae family of spiders, and are well known for being larger, hairier and---to many---scarier than any other type of spider in Massachusetts. According to ento.okstate.edu, they can vary in color from gray to brown, but are always adorned with stripes and other designs. You can often find wolf spiders in or around windows, doors and houseplants, or outside in gardens and under rocks.

Black Widow

  • According to e-bug.net, black widow spiders (latrodectus mactans) inhabit almost every state in the United States, and Massachusetts is no exception. Female black widows are the easiest to recognize, as their abdomens are bulbous and feature a distinctive hourglass marking that is red in color. Males have more elongated abdomens, and---instead of an hourglass---have red and white designs on their sides. You can commonly find black widows in basements, woodpiles and under other man-made structures. The severity of a black widow's bite depends on the physical condition of the individual who is bit. Children and elderly individuals are more likely to succumb to more serious symptoms, such as chest pain, fainting, elevated heart rate, elevated blood pressure and respiratory complications.

References

  • Photo Credit closeup of a house spider - archnida image by Jeffrey Banke from Fotolia.com
Promoted By Zergnet

Comments

Resources

You May Also Like

  • How to Identify a Spider Bite

    The vast majority of people that are bitten by spiders experience these bites after the spider is frightened and attempts to defend...

  • What Kind of Animals Live in Massachusetts?

    Massachusetts has a temperature deciduous climate and so can support many life forms from insects (Massachusetts' state insect is the 7-spotted ladybug)...

  • Common Snakes in Massachusetts

    Massachusetts has 14 species of native snakes within its borders, notes the University of Massachusetts Amherst Natural Resources & Environmental Conservation site....

  • Spiders of Cape Cod, Massachusetts

    Cape Cod is the eastern peninsula of Massachusetts, named by Bartholomew Gosnold in 1602, who caught a large number of cod in...

  • Spiders That Are Common in Oklahoma

    A detailed list of some of Oklahoma's most common garden spiders, including medically significant species.

  • Common Spiders in New England

    Hundreds of species of spiders can be found in the New England region. While some spiders are harder to find, some common...

Related Searches

Check It Out

How to Build and Grow a Salad Garden On Your Balcony

M
Is DIY in your DNA? Become part of our maker community.
Submit Your Work!