Common Types of House Spiders in Australia 

What are the common type of spiders found in homes? What are teh venomous spiders you need to work look out for? In this article, we will be discussing the most seen type of spiders found in Australian homes, which ones are considered to be dangerous and which ones are harmless and what benefits they can provide.

As common as spiders are in Australia and how essential it is for the environment, no one still likes to see them in their home. With over 2400 different species in Australia, you are most likely to see any one of these eight-legged creatures in your lifetime.

Spiders trigger irrational fears in many people because of their appearance and the many myths and misconceptions surrounding them.

This article offers a comprehensive discussion about spiders to help you learn about them and give you an idea of what to do when you encounter one or several.

Types of house spiders

Here are the common types of spiders that you may encounter in your home:

White-Tailed Spider. Known for their distinctive white tip on the end of their abdomen, white-tailed spiders are very small. They can be found under barks, rocks, leaf litter and logs in bushland and in the garden. You are mostly likely to discover these spiders during late summer to early autumn.

Black House Spider. They are often mistaken for Funnel Web Spiders, but they are actually completely different. Black House Spiders can be seen in a cobweb built in the nook of a window or skylight, waiting for prey. These non-native spiders can be found on tree trunks, logs, rock walls, and buildings.

Brown House Spider (Cupboard Spider). This spider has an overly bulbous appearance. They prefer dark, areas with little to no traffic. Brown House Spiders can be found under rocks, wood poles, bark, on walls, under eaves, around garage doors, old furniture, and junk stored in garages or sheds.

Daddy Long Legs. They look fragile because their legs look far too long compared to the rest of their body. Daddy Long Legs are commonly found in and around human habitation such as houses, garages and sheds.

Garden Orb Weaving Spider. They can be encountered in areas with a large amount of foliage. These spiders are mostly found in the gardens or hanging from rafters and roof overhangs. Their webs are usually located in areas that are excellent locations for catching flying insects.

Saint Andrew’s Cross Spider. They are beautiful spiders with a yellow and brown Aztec-painting style pattern on its abdomen. Their webs are found in low-shrubby vegetation.

Huntsman Spider. As their name implies, Huntsman Spiders are a hunting spider. They don’t spin webs, so they tend to hang around the home. Huntsman spiders are very shy and will run away fast when they see humans. They help control the pest population due to their appetite for bugs.

Wolf Spider. They are like Huntsman spiders in that they are fast runners and nocturnal hunters. Wolf Spiders are typically found in moss and decaying ground matter. But unlike Huntsman spiders, they stay on the ground and are usually found in the garden or lawn, particularly among leafy debris.

Redback Spider. They love urban areas and will be typically found hanging around the home, including window sills, outdoor BBQs, letterboxes, roof eaves, sheds, garden shrubbery, and flower pots. They are so small that it’s hard to notice them not to mention the fact that they prefer secluded hiding spots.

Funnel-Web Spider. The large, dark spider that you might see around your pool is most probably a Funnel-Web Spider. They don’t prefer entering homes, but would rather burrow in damp, cool, protected habitats, such as under rocks, under decaying logs and crevices. In gardens, they love rocky and dense shrubberies.

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Types of Venomous Spiders

Here are some of the venomous spiders in Australia and where they are found:

  • Sydney Funnel-Web Spider
  • Other Funnel-Web Spiders
  • Redback Spider
  • Mouse Spider
  • Trap Door Spider
  • White-tailed Spider
  • Australian Tarantula Spider
  • Recluse Spider
  • Huntsman Spider
  • Common Garden Orb Weaver Spider

Symptoms of spider bite

A spider bite is potentially fatal. But there has been no recorded death from spider bite from 1981 until 2016 in Australia. This shows the efficacy of anti-venom and the importance of getting immediate medical attention when you get bitten by a spider.

But this doesn’t change the fact that spiders are still dangerous and encounters with them should be avoided at all costs or let a spider removal specialist handle these pests.

Funnel-Web Spiders

For the Funnel-Web Spiders, which are considered as the most venomous spider in Australia, their bite can cause the following symptoms:

  • Localised pain
  • Tingling around the mouth
  • Excessive sweating
  • Profuse secretions of saliva
  • Stomach pain
  • Muscular twitching
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Confusion followed by unconsciousness

Redback Spider

A bite is most likely from a Redback Spider if it is from a large spider or a light-coloured one. The symptoms of a Redback Spider bite include:

Pain that is delayed for up to 5 minutes, and thereafter increases in intensity

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Stomach or generalised pain
  • Sweating
  • Restlessness
  • Palpitations
  • Weakness or muscle spasm
  • Fever

Anaphylaxis

If the patient develops anaphylaxis, or severe allergic reaction, call 000 for an ambulance, apply the Australian Resuscitation Council’s anaphylaxis treatment procedure and DRSABCB, and be ready to do CPR.

It is important to note that spiders go out of their way to avoid humans. Their instinct is to run away when they sense human presence. It is only when they are surprised or feel threatened that their natural reaction to bite is triggered.

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What are some benefits of spiders?

No matter how scared or shocked you are upon seeing a spider, don’t kill it. Aside from being a fellow living thing, spider play an important role in nature.

Though their natural habitat is outdoors, spiders find themselves in houses or buildings, perhaps accidently or they just went in for a short visit. And there are some species who adapt to living indoors, content to living out their life, spinning their web, searching for prey and making baby spiders.

These creatures don’t want to see humans and most of their species are non-threatening. More importantly, they are doing you a great service by living inside your house. They go after nuisance pests and even diseases-carrying insects, like mosquitoes, for sustenance.

There are people with a real fear of spiders. In reality, though, spiders are more afraid of us than we are of them. Bites from spiders are pretty rare. When they do occur, bites rarely cause serious medical problems, except for a few species, like the redback and funnel-web spiders, with highly toxic venom.

If you find a spider in your space and can’t abide by the live and let live approach, try not to smash it. Try the catch and release approach, if you can. If any of these methods are not doable, call spider removal experts for assistance.

Spiders considered to be harmless

Nearly all species of spiders are venomous, but only a few carry a poisonous bite. Contact with spider venom through a bite causes different levels of reactions, but in general it is just toxic enough to paralyse their prey, which are small insects.

Here are the species of house spiders that are considered as harmless:

  • Cellar Spider (Daddy Long Legs)
  • Common House Spider
  • Hobo Spider
  • Jumping Spider
  • Sac Spider
  • Wolf Spider

The one thing that all of the spiders above have in common is their tendency to flee at the first sign of human presence and any creature that are bigger than they are. Though most spiders that you would likely encounter are harmless and non-poisonous, they should still be considered as unwanted guests.

If you spot a spider, or spider identification is not your cup of tea, call trained spider experts to do the work of identifying, catching and releasing of the spider for you.

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