The Dark Fishing Spider is not your average house spider. Its size is quite amazing, the female abdomen and cephalothorax body measures almost an inch. When the female's legs are stretched out, she is almost three inches long. This species can be found in almost every state in North America.
Nursery web spiders belong to the class or family of spiders known as Araneae. This class of spiders has about 40,000 characters of species--Phylum Arthropoda, Order Araneae, and Class Arachnida.
Penn State University did a study about its habitat, life, and description. Studying the male and female mating cycle, their markings, and how they care for the eggs until hatching. Females are 15 to 26 mm long and males are 7 -13 mm. This university also notes the D. scriptus is closely related, having similar “w” markings on its lower abdomen’s portion.
Why is the Fishing Spider Called the Fishing Spider?
The dark fishing spider gets their moniker by how they hunt for food sources. Although adept at capturing insects when on land they are just as capable in water. The Fishing spider sinks beneath the water in pursuit of food. They use their back legs to anchor onto a sturdy surface. Stretching their front legs out over the surface of the water.
The bristly hairs capture bubbles of air allowing them to breathe while underwater. When in pursuit of prey their bodies remain submerged under the water's surface for several minutes.
Where are Dark Fishing Spiders Found?
The fishing spider is more apparent in the warmer months of summer. This species of spider is recognized and found near marinas and boat docks. Or, they can be viewed along the banks and shorelines of creeks and rivers. Their unique markings camouflage them while they search for food in the wooded places.
Do Fisherman Spiders Bite?
Yes, similar to almost every other North American state spider, the dark fishing spider does bite. If one gets in a state of being harassed, they go on the defensive. They also present venom when it bites. However, unless the victim has an allergy, their venom is not normally dangerous.
What does a Fishing Spider Bite Look Like?
The bite of the dolomedes tenebrosus is not much more serious than that of a wasp/bee sting. Some people state they feel no pain at all when this spider bites them, while others state it hurts severely. Unless you suffer from anaphylaxis or an allergic reaction it shouldn’t create much to be alarmed about.
Do Dark Fishing Spiders Spin Webs?
The dark fishing spider spins webs but not for hunting. This spider is one of the Dolomedes tenebrosus and part of the Pisauridae or nursery web family. The female builds a nursery web to protect the egg sac allowing a safe place for spiderlings to hatch. Following the mating of the female and male, the females build this silk web for the sac of eggs.
Is a Dark Fishing Spider Poisonous?
The dark fishing spider or Dolomedes tenebrosus can be found in Canada and the United States. Although capable of biting people, it normally will run away from them. However, there have been instances of humans receiving a bite from this spider. Unless allergic, there are normally no adverse side effects. Their bite is similar to that of a wasp or bee sting.
How Do You Identify a Dark Fishing Spider?
The dark fishing spider is first identified by the coloring of its body. It is a combination of light and dark grey and light brown. There are long spines and dark brown and black rings on its legs.
Additionally, there are three conspicuous w shaped marks colored black on the abdomen. Each of these marks has an end that is marked a light brown color. The females are larger than the males.
You can find this species of spider in the southern regions of Canada and as far south as Florida. They also are found in the woods of western areas of the Dakotas and Texas.
Are Dark Fishing Spiders Aggressive?
Some have stated the female, adult fishing spider appearance emits a dangerous state. The fangs of this spider are definitely capable of going into human skin because of their large size. Yet, very few humans report one of these Dolomedes species biting them.
How Can You Tell a Wolf Spider from a Fishing Spider?
The shape, coloring, and size of a fishing spider are much like that of the wolf spider. This species of Dolomedes lives close to water, capturing aquatic bugs and small fish to eat. Wolf spiders are totally earthly, while fishing spiders live near water, wolf spiders are on land.
What do the Nursery Web spiders Eat?
Fishing spider dolomedes tenebrosus typically eat aquatic insects; however, they have been observed to capture tadpoles and small fish. When in a state of being harassed, the fishing spider will dive underwater and stay there for a short period of time.
Do Fishing Spiders Live in a House?
If your home is close to the water, the genus dolomedes might be able to accidentally enter it. Yet, these species are more of an accidental invader because they typically live near water or on land. They are not known to intentionally come inside a house.
Where are these Fisherman Spiders Found?
This species of spider's habitat is normally near wooded areas or the shoreline of lakes and ponds. They are predominately in the north in Canada and New England and as far south as Texas and Florida. This genus of spiders has also been seen in the Dakotas.
Nursery web spiders belong to the Pisauridae family, many New York homeowners and business owners state they have seen them. Also referred to as fisherman spiders, this genus of Pisauridae prey on aquatic insects, minnows, and crustaceans.
Life Span of the Dolomedes Tenebrosus
The adult male and female dolomedes tenebrosus are known to hibernate beneath rocks and loosened tree bark. Also in the cavities of trees or structures made by humans. They are completely mature by the springtime. Between early May through September, you can find these mature spiders.
In June the female lays eggs and deposits the egg sac. She will carry them until the spiderlings begin hatching. The spiderlings are active from July through September. There are more than 1000 spiderling arachnids in the nursery web protected by the female.
Why is a Fishing Spider in My House?
If you live by a pond or other moisture and have grassy areas, this attracts these pests. Clearing this away will decrease their numbers. Also, call the professionals at A.N.T. Pest Control. We know how to get rid of all the pests that bug you.