Ohio is home to a diverse range of wildlife, including an impressive array of spiders. With over 600 species of spiders calling Ohio home, many of them are likely to find their way into your house. These arachnids serve as nature’s pest control, catching and eating those annoying bugs that end up indoors. From the peaceful and non-toxic Common House Spider to the venomous Brown Recluse, this article provides a comprehensive list of 14 common house spiders in Ohio. So, if you’re curious about the spiders that might be lurking in your home, keep reading to learn more about these fascinating creatures.
14 Common House Spiders in Ohio
Ohio is home to a wide variety of wildlife, including spiders. With its diverse landscapes of crop fields and hills, Ohio provides a great habitat for these eight-legged creatures. In fact, there are currently 649 species of spiders found in Ohio. Many of these spiders are commonly found in houses, where they happily take up residence and help control the population of annoying bugs. In this article, we will explore 14 common house spiders in Ohio, including their scientific names, descriptions, habitats, behaviors, and venomousness.
The Common House Spider
Scientific Name: Parasteatoda tepdariorium
The Common House Spider, as its name suggests, is the most frequently encountered spider species in Ohio homes. It is a non-toxic and peaceful spider that typically builds its web in corners to catch food. Despite their intimidating appearance, these spiders are harmless and will usually play dead when they feel threatened. While they are capable of biting, they rarely do so.
Long Bodied Cellar Spider
Scientific Name: Pholcus Phalangioides
The Long Bodied Cellar Spider, also known as the Daddy Long Legs, is another common spider found in Ohio. It has a distinctive body structure resembling a peanut and can have legs up to two inches long. These spiders are known for building messy, irregularly-shaped webs in quiet places such as attics, cellars, and sheds. They are harmless to humans and primarily feed on other insects.
Scientific Name: Herpyllus ecclesiasticus
The Parson Spider is a common house spider in Ohio. It can also be found in woodpiles and sheds, as it prefers outdoor habitats as well. This spider has a traditional Halloween spider appearance and does not bother making webs like other spiders. Instead, it chases down its prey. While the Parson Spider is not venomous, its bite can be painful.
Scientific Name: Loxoceles reclusa
The Brown Recluse is a long-legged brown spider commonly found in dark and humid areas such as cellars or crawl spaces. Although their venomous bite is toxic and can be painful, Brown Recluses are shy and tend to avoid humans. They spin their webs and patiently wait for prey, but encountering one is relatively rare.
Triangulate Cobweb Spider
Scientific Name: Steatoda triangulosa
The Triangulate Cobweb Spider is one of the most common house spiders in Ohio. You are likely to encounter this spider if you have spiders in your home. These spiders get their name from the triangle-shaped markings on their bellies. They often build their webs in windows and other dark areas. While they can deliver a painful bite, they typically do not pose a significant risk to humans.
Northern Black Widow Spider
Scientific Name: Latrodectus variolus
The Northern Black Widow Spider is easily recognized by its black body with a red hourglass marking. This spider has historically instilled fear in many people, but it is actually quite timid and rarely bites humans. However, if bitten, their venom can be highly toxic. Male black widows are harmless, and they typically do not live very long, as the female black widow often eats them after mating. These spiders build their webs in hollow logs, sheds, and crawl spaces.
Scientific Name: Scytodes
The Spitting Spider is a unique arachnid with six eyes and a dome-shaped body. They catch their prey by spitting a sticky venom onto them, which immobilizes the caught insect. These spiders will then wrap up their prey in their web and save it for later. While their venom is not typically dangerous to humans, it can cause discomfort.
Yellow Sac Spider
Scientific Name: Cheirocanthium inclusum
The Yellow Sac Spider has a one-inch leg span and a bulbous body. Instead of building traditional webs, they expel long threads that allow them to float from place to place. While they are not venomous, their bites can cause severe swelling. These spiders can be found in homes, gardens, and garages.
Bold Jumping Spider
Scientific Name: Phidippus audax
The Bold Jumping Spider is known for its colorful appearance and fuzzy legs. They have the best eyesight among all spider species, with a total of eight eyes. These spiders are capable of jumping up to four times their body length, which allows them to easily enter homes through open windows or holes in screens. Once inside, they will hide under furniture, curtains, and cabinets. While they have large fangs and can bite, their bites are not considered serious.
Nursery Web Spider
Scientific Name: Pisaurina mira
The Nursery Web Spider is abundant in Ohio and is non-venomous and non-aggressive towards pets and humans. However, their venom can be lethal to small creatures such as fish. These spiders are known for the care they provide to their eggs. The female spider carries her eggs in her mouth until they are ready to hatch.
Deadly Ground Crab Spider
Scientific Name: Xysticus funestus
The Deadly Ground Crab Spider gets its name from its appearance, resembling a tiny crab. However, this spider is non-venomous, peaceful, and harmless to humans. They prey on ground insects and may occasionally visit houses. Due to their small size, measuring only 3/16 of an inch, they are unlikely to be noticed by humans.
Black and Yellow Garden Spider
Scientific Name: Argiope aurantia
The Black and Yellow Garden Spider is one of the largest house spiders in Ohio. These spiders are completely harmless to humans and are known for their beautifully designed webs. They can often be found in areas with a high population of insects.
Scientific Name: Lycosidou
The Wolf Spider is one of the largest and fastest house spiders in Ohio. They prefer dark and damp areas like cellars, sheds, and porches’ crevices. While their bite can be painful, they are only mildly venomous and predominantly avoid contact with humans.
Long-Legged Sac Spider
Scientific Name: Cheiracanthium
The Long-Legged Sac Spider is commonly found inside homes in Ohio. They usually settle in corners, sit on their webs, and wait for random bugs to come their way. While they are mildly venomous and have the potential to deliver a painful bite, they are beneficial for controlling insect populations. It is recommended to keep a safe distance from these spiders.
Overall, these 14 common house spiders in Ohio demonstrate the wide diversity of spider species that can be found in the state. While some have venomous bites, most are harmless and play an essential role in controlling insect populations. It’s important to remember that spiders are generally beneficial and contribute to the ecosystem in various ways. If you encounter spiders in your home, it is often best to leave them alone or carefully relocate them outside.