While spiders are commonly regarded as undesirable houseguests, the vast majority of spiders found within homes are not considered medically or structurally harmful pests. This is not to say that pest control professionals avoid addressing spider issues within homes. For example, the three most commonly managed spiders within US homes, wolf spiders, American house spiders and cellar spiders, are all harmless incidental invaders that pose more of an aesthetic problem than a genuine pest problem.
Spiders are generally considered beneficial pests due to their habit of preying on insect pests within and around homes. In rare cases, spiders can become a nuisance when large numbers are found indoors, and a few species in the US are considered medically threatening. The two most common and dangerous spider species in the US are widely known as southern black widow and brown recluse spiders, both of which are often found within Waco homes. Unfortunately, brown recluse spiders are known for infesting homes in large numbers where they sometimes inflict harmful bites to humans.
According to a 2016 nationwide survey of pest control professionals, brown recluse spiders were the fourth most frequently managed spider species within homes. Brown recluse spider infestations are difficult to eliminate from homes, and many affected homeowners have considered selling their house due to unmanageable brown recluse infestations. One-story shingled-roof homes surrounded by vegetation and/or vines on the exterior walls tend to be particularly vulnerable to brown recluse infestations, as these homes provide the arachnids with numerous harborages. Many pest control professionals claim that older brick homes on crawl space foundations are prone to brown recluse infestations.
Brown recluse spiders cannot scale walls that are covered with smooth siding, but the rough surface of brick walls are another story. Brown recluse spiders often crawl through attic vents and hide beneath shingles after successfully climbing brick or vine-covered exterior walls. Older homes with cracked and/or deteriorating foundations allow brown recluse spiders to crawl into interior wall voids where they have been known to gravitate in large numbers. Crawl spaces in homes provide a substantial amount of entry points where brown recluse spiders can access interior areas. These arachnids also congregate in areas that are rich in vegetation in order to secure easy access to insect food sources, as most insects are herbivores. After brown recluse spiders establish a harborage within a dark space, they generally cover the entry point with webbing, making their hiding spots somewhat recognizable to homeowners.
Have you ever encountered a brown recluse spider within your home?