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Thread: Brown & Black Spider with striped legs...poisonous?!?! Help!

  1. #1

    Brown & Black Spider with striped legs...poisonous?!?! Help!

    I found a brown and black spider with striped legs and what looks like an black arrow on it's back in the hallway of my house. It's an old house that we are still fixing up so it tends to have quite a bit of little spiders but this thing spaned probably as big as my palm with all the legs outstretched. I live in Southern Virginia, about 3 miles from the NC stateline in Danville, VA. I really want to know if it is poisonous because I have my nieces staying over. I'd also like to know if I should be concerned about more. I tried to get it but it ran in my husbands office and I lost it so now I'm concerned. Please help!

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  2. #2
    Moderator Ungoliant's Avatar
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    Your large house guest is a wolf spider (family Lycosidae).

    Most wolf spiders are fairly small (less than a centimeter in body length), but those of genus Hogna can get much larger. There are a few Hogna species in your area, but this looks similar to Hogna lenta or Hogna baltimoriana. However, I'm not an expert, and it's often not possible to identify wolf spiders to the species level without a microscope.

    Like most spiders, wolf spiders are venomous but not dangerous to humans or pets. They are, however, great at pest control.

    In your area, the only spiders of medical concern are adult female widows (genus Latrodectus). Fortunately, it is easy to learn how to identify them, and they prefer to keep to themselves.

    This site has an article on how to manage the spider population in your house and how to avoid being bitten.
    Last edited by Ungoliant; 06-20-2012 at 12:04 PM.
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    "There is no shame in not knowing. The problem arises when irrational thought and attendant behavior fill the vacuum left by ignorance." --Neil deGrasse Tyson

  3. #3
    Community Guide Eric's Avatar
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    Thanks to Ungoliant for the proper ID and covering all the bases on this one :-)

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