No matter where you live, no one wants unwanted visitors like spiders. Despite being an important part of the ecosystem, they can be quite the nuisance. Across the Southwest, especially in Arizona, there are several species of spiders that you can routinely find in your home. But don’t worry! We’re here to tell you about the most common spiders found in Arizona, and share some DIY tips to keep them out of your space.
Common Spider Species in Arizona
In Arizona there are as many as 27 species of spiders, each being unique in their own way — from the colors and markings along their bodies, to the different types of prey and hiding spots they inhabit. The most common types of spiders in Arizona are:
- Crab spiders
- Giant crab spiders
- Cellular spiders
- Scorpion spiders
Despite their very similar names, crab and giant crab spiders are categorized in different families of arachnids. You’ll find crab spiders in your garden, as they love to prey on insects and tend to lay their eggs in flowers. As their name suggests, they look like tiny crabs, and can change color to blend in with their surroundings. You can find them under garden foliage, such as leaves, mulch, and on plants or flowers.
Giant Crab Spider
Giant crab spiders are among the largest of spider species found in Arizona. They are also known as huntsman spiders, as the brown, hairy spider will lay in wait for any prey smaller than it is. They’re so big that they can often fit in the palm of your hand, and you will notice a narrow, dark stripe that runs down the center of its abdomen. You can typically find giant crab spiders in landscaped areas, such as on trees, bushes, and even on stucco or wooden walls. They prefer surfaces that have texture, as it is easier for them to climb.
Cellar spiders are one of the most common spiders found in Arizona. They are usually either gray or tan, with long, skinny legs. Similar to the Crab and Giant Crab spiders, they too are usually found in flower beds. But they will also follow their insect prey indoors, where they will build their nests in safety. You will mostly find cellar spiders in cool, dark, and moist areas such as cellars, garages, and wood piles.
Scorpion spiders, also known as Sun spiders or Camel spiders, are carnivores that feed off rodents, small birds, and insects. The Scorpion spider is tan and dark brown, with small hairs on its body. As they mainly live in desert areas, their appearance helps camouflage them into the environment. You won’t see much of them during the day, as these spiders are nocturnal and are rarely out in the open during daylight hours due to the heat.
How to Keep Spiders Out of the House
Spiders play a large part in the ecosystem and can help manage pests in your landscaping or gardens. Unfortunately, they can become pests themselves once they enter your home. Fortunately, there are a few different things you can do to help keep these unwanted guests away.
- One of the best preventative measures you can take to avoid a spider infestation is to keep a clean house. Spiders, especially those that spin webs, love a cluttered or dusty area to call home, as it gives them plenty of places to hide.
- Leave cedar balls or chips in closets or areas that aren’t used frequently like your basement, as the chemicals they release are natural insect repellents.
- Vinegar, a common cleaning product, is great for detering spiders as well. Mix equal parts vinegar and water and spray openings in your floor or wall the areas you are seeing spiders.
Exterior Spider Pest Control
On the exterior of your home, there are a couple other things you can do to keep your home spider free. Many homes have gardens or landscaping close to their foundation, which makes the area very appealing to spiders as they have a safe place to nest and easy access to your living quarters. Take time to remove dead growth, weeds, and to keep the bushes in the garden trimmed back, as this will eliminate common spider habitats. If you keep a wood pile, move it away from your home, as spiders love the cool, dark crevices.
Another thing you can do is to make sure your doorways and windows are properly sealed. Check these openings for any cracks or broken seals, as spiders can easily use these spaces to crawl into your home. You can use weather stripping or caulk to fill the gaps—and they can make your home more energy efficient, as well.
Plants that Keep Spiders Away
Plants are great for a multitude of reasons—whether you’re growing a garden, using them in decorative landscaping, or potting them for decor in your home. Plants offer many benefits in addition to being pretty to look at, such as purifying the air and repelling pesky spiders and bugs.
Peppermint, basil, and lemon balm are all great plants that are not only edible but can be used to keep spiders away. The strong scents of these plants are a natural deterrent to spiders and other insects, and will make your home smell good at the same time. Although they are more of a seasonal plant, chrysanthemums and marigolds are beautiful, bold flowers that will also keep the spiders at bay.
Eucalyptus and lavender are also very fragrant plants that spiders dislike. You can hang bundles of trimmings in your home or keep them planted in a pot or your yard for some added decor and natural spider repellant. Luckily, eucalyptus trees and lavender plants do very well in the hot and dry climate of Arizona, making them very good options for deterring spiders.
Spiders not going away? Talk with Burns Pest Elimination!
Spiders are an unwelcome guest, and they can be difficult to get rid of. Taking preventive measures can help keep spiders away from your home. If you’ve taken these steps and still are finding spiders taking up residence in your space, contact Burns Pest Elimination. Our pest control professionals will help find the best solution for you. Request a quote today and let our team get rid of those creepy crawlers once and for all!