Spiders in Orange County – What You Need To Know
Our temperate coastal climate feels like a blessing most of the time. (Although it’s been raining like crazy the past few days!) But bugs thrive in warm weather as much as we do. And Southern California is home to countless species of insects and spiders, none of which we really want in our homes.
Let’s take a look at some of the commonly-found spiders in southern California, and learn what to do if you find them in your home.
California Trapdoor Spider
As its name suggests, the California Trapdoor spider is a native to our area. They’re typically black except for a brown abdomen, and may resemble smaller, hairless tarantulas. They have the potential to bite if cornered and threatened, though they are not dangerous to humans.
Trapdoor spiders are named for their habit of digging underground burrows, reinforced with silk. This isn’t exactly easy to do on hardwood floors or carpeting, so these creatures don’t prefer to live in your home, but they may be found nearby on your property. Rainy weather may force trapdoor spiders to take shelter indoors.
“Cellar spiders” actually refers to a family of related spider species, which are spread across nearly the entire world. They are generally thin and fragile, with small bodies and disproportionately long legs. In fact, the nickname “daddy long-legs” is often used for some species of cellar spiders.
Cellar spiders are very commonly found indoors, and pose no threat to humans. Some people actually consider them nice to have around (at least in out-of-the-way areas, like the corners of the garage), as they will prey on not only insects but also other spiders. Still, most would prefer not to find any spiders inside the home.
Black widow spiders – as well as their less-infamous cousins, the brown widow spiders – can be found in Orange County. Black widows are typically shiny black (female) or purple/gray (male), while brown widows range from tan to shades of gray/black. Both have a prominent hourglass-shaped marking on their abdomen.
Black widows in particular are known for their venomous bites, which can be quite unpleasant but are very rarely life-threatening. Only the females pose any danger to humans, as the males have much smaller mouthparts that are too short to inject venom into our skin. Brown widow venom is milder than that of their cousins.
Widow spiders are generally comfortable outside in southern California’s climate year-round, but rainy weather or cold snaps can drive them indoors. While they have been known to go dormant during the colder months, the moderate temperatures here usually allow them to stay active throughout winter.
Removing Spiders From Your Home
If you’re “grossed out” by spiders – even the non-poisonous ones – and just can’t stand to be near them, you’re not alone. But you can get the spider removal process started by sweeping away webs (especially if you see egg sacs within them) as you find them. It’s perfectly fine to give the spiders themselves a wide berth, especially if you aren’t sure whether they are dangerous or not.
Since they prefer to spin webs and wait for prey to arrive, rather than actively hunt, spiders rely on having a close, abundant source of food. If you’re finding numerous spiders in your home, it may mean that there is a larger insect problem at hand. Your best bet is to call in the pest control professionals to treat the underlying cause.
At Preferred Pest Control, we’re Orange County’s #1 spider removal specialists. Contact us today for a free quote.
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