Good spider control starts with housekeeping and looking at the environment around your home as if you’re a spider. Focus on removing suitable habitats and food sources. By removing suitable places for web making spiders to make webs and also removing excess clutter and stored items around the home for non-web making spiders like White Tailed Spiders and Huntsman's we reduce the suitability for spiders to call your place home.
Spiders, like us, need access to food and suitable shelter, by minimising these we will dramatically decrease the spider population around your home. It’s always good to remember that spiders are an important part of the environment, they do not carry any disease and cannot harm your property. Spiders actually help by reducing other common pests around the home that happen to land in their webs.
The most common spiders to be found in Adelaide and South Australia are not dangerous but it is best to stay clear if uncertain. Redbacks and White Tailed spiders pose the greatest risk to adults and children.
Redback spiders like nothing more than dry and sheltered sites in which to build their webs. Places like shrubs, under pot plants rim & window ledges, stored items in sheds and garages and garden furniture provide ideal sites to create their funnel like webs. Redback webs are sophisticatedly designed to maximise the trapping potential of prey. They achieve this feat by having sticky catching threads running to anchor the main web to the ground ensuring that no airborne or ground dwelling insects and even small lizards can escape their grasp. It is important to remember that only the female Redback spider bites and can cause serious illness and in some cases has end in death, the female is larger than the male, being around 1cm in size compared to the male which is approx. 3mm to 4mm. Both have the distinctive red markings on the abdomen.
White Tailed spiders as the name suggests have a very distinctive white tail at the end of their abdomen and unlike the Redback, are not web dwellers. The female White Tailed spider will only make a temporary web like structure when reproducing to store her eggs. White Tails are adept hunters, loving nothing more than hunting down other spiders to feast upon. They are that skilled in hunting that they can even take on the deadly Redback. During the warmer months White Tails will seek shelter from the harsh Australian sun in the climate controlled environment found inside our homes. Here they can find food aplenty in the form of the black house spiders, which is one of their favourite foods. During the cooler months the white tails are happy to forage in leaf litter, bark and mulch finding an abundance of food to feast upon. Like the Redback these small spiders measuring in at 1 to 2cm packs a punch if they were to bite unsuspecting victim and can cause in some people skin necrosis.
Keeping clutter to a minimum and removing spider webs as a part of your garden maintenance coupled with an annual residual perimeter spray treatment and you can achieve a spider free environment.
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