Concerned about spider's at work

Asked November 26, 2020, 9:45 PM EST

Hi my name is matt I live in Ohio and I work for a company that supplies materials to contractors mostly concrete and asphalt supplies so are warehouse stays pretty dry yesterday when I was eating my lunch I felt something crawling up my arm I looked and saw a really big spider some of are materials come in on container ships and is shipped to us locally its it's nothing like we've ever seen and managment are concerned it may have came from a different country and don't know weather or not this species are venomous or not we've captured the spider and got pictures of it which I'm sending to you please get back to me at your earliest convenience thank you...

Summit County Ohio

1 Response

Hi. Thanks for sending nice, clear photos. I don’t think I’ll be able to make an exact identification, but I’m pretty sure it is a type of orb weaver, which are spiders that belong to the family Araneidae. There are many different types of orb weavers that are common in Ohio, and it could very well be one of those species. The Ohio Department of Natural Resources has a nice guide to common spiders of Ohio, and you can view a PDF of the pamphlet here. If you scroll to pages 23-27, you will see that the overall form of your spider is very similar to several species in that family that are found here in Ohio. It doesn’t look exactly like any of the species that are pictured, so it could be another type of Ohio spider or a species that came from elsewhere, but I think the odds of it being dangerous to humans are low. All of the more venomous spiders in Ohio belong to other families, and orb weavers are considered beneficial spiders; they are the ones that spin the classic spiderwebs and prey on flying insects. If you would like a more precise identification, you can send the specimen (preferably preserved in alcohol) to the C. Wayne Ellett Plant and Pest Diagnostic Clinic (PPDC) at The Ohio State University. There is a $20 fee, but you are certain to get a good identification. You can find details about how to submit a sample here.