Hobo Spiders in Washington
How to get rid of spiders in Seattle, Olympia, Puyallup & Tacoma.
Most spiders are beneficial. They feed on a variety of small insects including mosquitoes, moths, and other flies. Many species build intricate webs in strategic locations like windows, ceilings and corners. Since the webs are highly visible, most homeowners choose to remove them.
Virtually all spiders have venom and fangs, but only a few are likely to bite humans. The hobo spider is common throughout Washington state and is quite common in and around homes in western Washington. The black widow spider is common in eastern Washington but rarely found in western Washington. Contrary to popular belief, the brown recluse spider does not occur naturally in Washington.
If you have been experiencing spider problems, call us about our prevention programs. We’ll treat problem areas with a recommended dose of an effective insecticide. We’ll also inspect your home to help you stop future invasions.
What Do Hobo Spiders Look Like?
These spiders are large with brown bodies about 7/16″ to 5/8″ long. They usually have two dark parallel stripes that run lengthwise on their backs. A larger relative – the giant house spider – is up to 3/4″ and also very common.
Where Are Hobo Spiders Found?
They are commonly found throughout Washington in unfinished basements, garages, crawl spaces or around houses where heavy shrubbery grows against the house. They often wander long distances and are swift runners. These spiders build funnel shaped webs and can often be seen waiting for prey in the middle of the funnel.
Will Hobo Spider Bites Hurt Anyone?
The initial bite of the hobo spider is like a very slight prick and is not painful, though reactions vary. In sensitive people, a hard area surrounded by a 2-6″ wide reddened area may appear in less than 1/2 hour. The area later blisters and reveals a 1/2″ to 1″ lesion that may become infected. Bites may take months to heal and are often misdiagnosed as that of a brown recluse.
The bite may be accompanied by a severe headache which can last 2-7 days. Some victims also experience nausea, weakness, tiredness and vision impairment. If you experience any of these systems, you should consult a physician. Bites from these spiders rarely cause death, but the slow healing of the bite may leave a permanent scar.
According to Dr. Rick Vetter, a renowned arachnologist, the hobo spider may be wrongly accused of causing necrosis to tissue after all. There is a considerable lack of evidence regarding verified hobo spider bites, and previous studies on the subject may be flawed. In fact, the hobo spider has been around for hundreds of years in Europe and is considered by the population to be harmless. Locally, all of the pest control technicians here at Whitworth continually go where these spiders live (crawl spaces, etc.) and none of us have ever been bitten by a hobo spider. The hobo spider (or any other species of spider for that matter) simply has no reason or motivation to bite humans, other than in a desperate attempt at self-defense.
How to get rid of spiders in your Seattle Home
- Check doors and windows for gaps. Repair any holes or gaps large enough for spiders.
- Check firewood for silk egg sacs and spiders before bringing inside.
- Remove spiders and webs from dark corners with a vacuum cleaner. Empty the bag immediately.
- Don’t allow heavy shrubbery to grow against house.