SPIDERS – Public Enemy #1
Spiders are one of the most feared home invaders in the pest control world. This isn’t what you would normally expect from something that’s main source of food is bugs. To illustrate America’s fear of spiders, all one has to do is look at the movies! Hollywood loves to feature America’s Most Unwanted Pest - The Spider to frighten movie goers. Lord of The Rings, Harry Potter, and the all time classic spider creep out – Arachnophobia are just a few examples of movies that feature our eight legged pest. There are more spider phobias than any other pest, and understandably so. They are one of the few pests that are a problem both inside and outside of your house. If you are bitten by the wrong type of spider, something like a brown recluse or a black widow and you have a bad reaction to the venom, you can end up in the hospital. And yes, there have even been the occasional deaths associated with a spider bite. In the case of the brown recluse, common in wood and brush piles outside the home, the venom eats the skin and the only treatment is to let the venom break down over time.
Controlling spiders is different from other pests. For one, spiders are not insects. For this reason, biologically spiders are not very receptive to chemical agents and not very cooperative picking up pesticides. Just spraying alone is not a 100% defense against spiders. Spider’s long legs keep them high off the ground. Unlike other pests, spiders don’t drag their bellies on the ground. In fact, a spider’s body never comes in contact with the ground. It’s a built-in defense mechanism. For this reason, insecticide residue on the surface only touches the bottom part of their legs. Since technically spiders don’t have feet. Since spiders have a hard body shell and a limited circulatory system, they don’t easily absorb poison through their legs.
True insects such as fleas, ants, and roaches use their mouth to groom themselves habitually like a cat. Spiders don’t use their mouth as a grooming tool. When they get poison on themselves they groom and they die.
With the exception of a few species, spiders spend their lives sitting in webs. This makes effectively applying pesticides very difficult. We in the pest control industry refer to effective spider control as a “contact kill”. Contact can come from a shoe, newspaper or poison but the key element to spider control is CONTACT.
EFFECTIVE SPIDER CONTROL
Since spiders are predators that eat other insects and spiders, reducing the food supply is the most effective way to control spiders. Spiders will only hang out where they can readily find food. Eliminate the insects and you lower the amount of spiders invading your home. Light sources that attract moths and other flying insects create a constant food supply for spiders. For this reason they become a popular web construction site. So ironically those bug zappers you have around your outdoor patio are keeping the spiders well fed. It’s like sending your spiders to a five-star restaurant! Remember that spiders build webs and wait for food to come to them, so they are pretty skilled at knowing where to find a food source.
There are also hunting spiders. Hunting spiders are very athletic and really do run down their prey. Jumping spiders are one type of hunting spider. Just like web spinning spiders, the best way to control running and jumping spiders at home is to control the food source around the home. Get rid of the bugs they are hunting!
Common hunting spiders
In addition to crack and crevice treatment, you can use those sticky glue traps. The trap itself won’t attract a spider, rather another bug stuck to the trap is the bait to get the spider to the trap. A glue trap doesn’t kill the spider, it only traps them. You have to wait for them to sit there stuck until they die. If you have several glue traps you may be able to figure out how the spiders are getting in by noticing which traps have the most bugs on them.
Spiders are loners and don’t live in colonies like fleas, ants, wasps and roaches they are not normally as big a problem. A little contact control with the bottom of your shoe might be all you need if your other bugs are under control.
For a free home inspection, contact the pros at BugOut pest control!