Florida is no stranger to unique, unusual, and downright scary species. Alligators, coral snakes, sharks, giant cockroaches..the list goes on and on. Few critters get the fear factor response though like spiders. Since they can show up almost anywhere, and at any time, they get quite a reaction from many homeowners. However, spiders range greatly in shape, size, and level of danger. We thought it would be fun to have a "heavyweights challenge" of sorts, and give you the top 3 finalists of the biggest, and scariest, spiders here in Florida.
Ready to see who won?
3rd Place: Wolf Spider. These arachnids are common here in Polk County, and they are definitely on the larger side of our local spider selection. Perhaps what landed them in 3rd place overall though is the fact that they don't build webs to hunt their prey...they run. They can outrun cockroaches (which is one of their food sources) which means they are FAST. While terrifying, they aren't venomous to humans, although their bite can be painful and does cause redness and swelling. Depending on the length of their fangs, they can also leave two visible puncture marks in the skin. These guys are commonly found on the sides of buildings and houses (and sometimes in garages or inside your home if you aren't keeping up with pest control) or out in your yard.
2nd Place: Golden Silk Orb Weaver ("Banana Spider"). This common creature is impressive, but not dangerous. The female Banana Spider, as it's known by local Floridians, can be up to 3 inches in diameter, and the bright colors and striped legs make it hard to miss! These spiders weave "golden" webs (hence their name) and are found most often in wooded areas. They aren't generally venomous, unless you happen to have an allergic reaction.
1st Place Grand Prize: Black Widow Spider. The Black Widow spider is found not only in Florida, but in many southeastern states, and she got her name from the terrifying practice of eating her mate when his job is done. These spiders actually are venomous to humans, so it's important to know what to look for! Black widows are, as their name implies, black, with a telltale red hourglass shape on their abdomens. If you are bitten by one of these gals, it's best to seek medical attention ASAP!
While there are many more spider species throughout Central Florida, these winners give good reason for people to be a little nervous! No matter the species though, no one wants these creatures, or any others, inside their home. Lucky for you, Country Boy Pest Control can keep your house free of spiders and other pests, so you only have to worry about seeing spiders in the great outdoors when you're ready for them. Give us a call for an on-the-spot estimate!