Spider myths you probably didn’t know about
July 20th, 2016 by Mike MacDonald in Spiders
There is a lot of misinformation about spiders floating around, so here are a few debunked spider myths.
Spider myths you might think are true
Probably the most common of the spider myths you will hear is that all spiders make webs. In fact there are plenty of spiders, about half, that don’t spin webs. Some include wolf spiders that like to hunt and kill their prey. Another way spiders kill their prey is through trap doors. They hide in underground traps and attack prey that gets close that they sense via vibration.
Another common myth you will hear is that every kind of spider lives everywhere. Each species of spiders lives in distinct parts of the world. You won’t often find tarantulas for example here in Minnesota, unless they are pets.
Spider myths you can identify what kind of spider you have by it’s markings
Obviously spiders of the same species can have similar characteristics, however there are a lot of spiders that are the same species but can very in looks drastically. According to Rod Crawford, spider expert,
“Spiders are identified by structure. They are classified into families by the arrangement of the eyes, number of claws, location and arrangement of certain specialized hairs and spines, structure and arrangement of the spinnerets (silk spinning organs at rear end), and other characters that you cannot see with the naked eye. Within families, species are separated mostly by the fine structure of the sex organs (yes, really, I’m not kidding! see below), which can’t be seen without high magnification. Color patterns can be very variable within species, and very similar between different species.”
Spider myths – Spiders come into your home through the drain
I’m happy to report this is a myth, if you hate finding random spiders in your shower, you can at least not have to worry about them coming in through your plumbing. Most places in your home don’t have many options for water. Often spiders will try and get to the water source from your sink or tub, and once they get into it they have a hard time climbing back up the slick sides. Most of the time they get stuck and can’t get back to where they came from in your home. In addition to that, with how plumbing is designed today, there isn’t much chance of anything coming up through the pipes.
Spider myths – Spiders bite people all the time
One of the main reasons this is not the case, is that spiders don’t eat human blood, such as pests like ticks and mosquitoes. Also a lot of the time, things that people label as spider bites are either bites from other types of pests or even more likely a skin infection. In worse case scenarios these skin issues could even be cancer. If you have bite like symptoms you should look into medical attention rather quickly if the symptoms linger.
Most spiders in the world are also not aggressive towards humans in the slightest. Some spiders have the ability to jump large distances, which could be mistaken for aggression and startle humans. Almost all spider venom is so weak that even if they bite humans, there wouldn’t be any sort of reaction at all. A lot of spider fangs aren’t even going to be strong enough to pierce human skin. Their fangs are designed to work on very small insects, not humans. If you have something that looks like a bite, it probably wasn’t from a spider.
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