Spider in North Carolina

Asked October 16, 2016, 10:51 PM EDT

This spider had been chilling at my house for a month and will only come out at night. Please can you tell me what this is?? I have a huge phobia and I just need to know.

Stanly County North Carolina spiders spider identification

1 Response

Thank you for your question. The photo is out of focus when you enlarge it and doesn't really show enough of the abdomen to be able to give you a positive identification. It looks like one of the orbweaver spiders, family Araneidae, possibly the Hentz Orbweaver (Neoscona crucifera).

It is found in the eastern U.S. north to Canada, west to the Rocky Mountains and south to Mexico. It is common throughout North Carolina. It is primarily nocturnal, and usually hides during the day. It often builds its web each night near porch lights or near windows where internal lights will attract insects. Adults appear in summer to late summer and may be present until the first frost.

Like most spiders, it is venomous, but it is not considered to pose a significant health risk to humans, like the bite of the black widow.

Here's a link to the University of Arkansas' Dept. of Entomology's page on this species:
http://www.uark.edu/ua/arthmuse/cavatic.html

An excellent field guide on spiders found in North Carolina is:
Gaddy, L.L. (2009). Spiders of the Carolinas. Duluth: Kollath +Stensaas Publishing.

Hope this answers your question, and thanks for using Ask an Expert.

Jim