Orb Weaver Spiders in Eastern Tennessee
If there was a poster child for spiders, it would probably be the orb weaver, which builds the familiar circular-shaped webs often found in gardens, fields, and forests. Orb weavers are found throughout the world, except for the Arctic and Antarctica. These arachnids are large, conspicuous, and many are very colorful. They spin elaborate webs in concentric circles in the garden and wait for nearby prey to become entangled. Orb weavers generally have poor vision and rely on web vibrations to locate and identify prey.
Orb Weaver Spider Habitat
Like all spiders, orb weavers are carnivores, feeding primarily on insects and other small organisms that get trapped in their sticky webs. They are most abundant in summer, in garden areas, and around the home. Orb weavers spin large, circular webs that can be as wide as six feet or more, often between buildings and shrubs. Homeowners may not even be aware of the spiders’ presence unless they walk outside after dark and see the web in a lighted area or walk into the web in the dark. Often, the edge of an eave is used as upper support, with the bottom frame lines attached to a shrub or the ground.
Orb Weaver Spider Behaviors, Threats, or Dangers
Orb weavers can bite, but seldom do and their bite is not toxic to humans. They are generally harmless and can be a nuisance when they build large webs in places inconvenient for humans. Occasionally, they will wander into a home and build a web in a doorway or window sill. Despite their formidable appearance, orb weaver spiders are non-aggressive and not considered dangerous. However, be careful not to walk into their large, sticky webs at night. The fright of this spider crawling over one’s face can be terrifying and may cause anxiety and fear in some people.
If you are dealing with orb weavers inside your property, contact your local spider exterminators.
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