Southern House Spider


Actual Size: 13 mm to 19 mm


  • Males are brown or amber.
  • Females are black, or charcoal and look like small tarantulas.

Habitat: Constructs webs at higher elevations around cracks and crevices on the exterior of homes, barns, and other structures. Will also spin webs in outdoor vegetation.


  • Sometimes referred to as the crevice spider.
  • Looks similar to brown recluse, but their venom is not toxic.
  • Has an unnerving tendency to crawl across anything in their path, including human skin.

Southern House Spider Identification


What Do Southern House Spiders Look Like?

Southern house spiders, sometimes referred to as crevice spiders, are commonly found spider species in North Carolina. They are frequently mistaken for brown recluse spiders, however, males have eight eyes squeezed together, and females are velvety black and look more like small tarantulas. These spiders are known for their long legs and large size, making them easily noticeable.

Signs of a Southern House Spider Infestation

Signs of infestation include frequent sightings of these large spiders, especially in corners and less-disturbed areas of a house. Their webs are often found in crevices, near windows and doors, and in garages and basements.


Habitat, Diet, Life Cycle & Bites


Where Do Southern House Spiders Live?

Southern house spiders typically prefer dark, secluded areas. They are commonly found in human-made structures such as houses, sheds, and barns. These spiders are particularly prevalent in the southern United States.

Diet of a Southern House Spider

Their diet primarily consists of small insects, which they capture in their webs. Southern house spiders play a beneficial role in controlling pest populations.

Life Cycle of a Southern House Spider

The life cycle of the southern house spider involves egg, spiderling, and adult stages. Females lay eggs in sacs, usually hidden in their web. The spiderlings undergo several molts before reaching maturity.

Southern House Spider Bites

While they look similar to the dangerous recluse spider species, southern house spiders are harmless to humans. They are reluctant to bite, and their venom is not medically significant. They do, however, have an unnerving tendency to crawl across anything in their path. Male southern house spiders sometimes appear aggressive, but they do not bite unless trapped and their mouthparts are too small to easily penetrate human skin. 


Are Southern House Spiders Poisonous?

No, southern house spiders are not poisonous. Southern house spiders are often mistaken for being dangerous due to their large size and similarity to the brown recluse spider. However, they are not poisonous and pose little threat to humans. Their bites are rare and, if they do occur, typically result in only mild irritation or redness. These spiders are more of a nuisance in homes due to their webbing rather than a health hazard. It’s important to note that they play a beneficial role in controlling insect populations. They are generally non-aggressive, and their venom is not harmful to people.

How to Get Rid of Southern House Spiders?

Regular cleaning and removal of webs can help reduce the presence of southern house spiders. Sealing cracks and crevices in the home’s exterior can also prevent them from entering. Our professional spiders exterminators can help safely remove southern house spiders and advise on long term strategies to prevent future infestations.

Southern House Spider Prevention Tips

Prevent southern house spiders by maintaining a clean and clutter-free environment, especially in basements, garages, and attics. Use window screens and door sweeps to keep them from entering your home.



Are Southern House Spider Bites Poisonous?

Southern house spider bites are not poisonous to humans. They are generally harmless and cause minimal irritation.

What Attracts Southern House Spiders to Homes?

Southern house spiders are attracted to homes as they provide shelter and a steady food supply of insects.

Can You Keep a Southern House Spider as a Pet?

While it’s possible to keep a southern house spider as a pet, they require specific conditions to thrive and are not typically regarded as common pet spiders.

What is the Maximum Size of a Southern House Spider?

Female southern house spiders can reach sizes of about 0.5 to 1 inch in body length, with the males being slightly smaller. Including their leg span, they can appear much larger.

How to Tell the Difference Between a Brown Recluse and a House Spider?

Southern house spiders can be distinguished from brown recluses by their larger size and webbing habits. Brown recluses have a violin-shaped mark on their back and do not create visible webs like house spiders. Unsure on which type of spider you are dealing with? See our common spider species to help you identify which spider you have spotted.