Are There Dangerous Spiders in Washington?

Author: Kurt Treftz, Cascade Pest Control

You may think spiders are typical household pests regardless of where you live. This is true, but did you know that different areas are prone to different types of spiders? Similarly, spider control treatments can vary depending on which species are common in your area. Understanding which spiders are in your area, and which ones are potentially dangerous, will help you find the right spider control treatment to ensure you’re not left with an infestation or unwanted bite. 

If you’re a Western Washington or Seattle region resident, you know that there are lots of spiders out and about at different times around here. While some can look rather large and creepy, this doesn’t necessarily mean they’re dangerous. Most spiders that you find in your space are non-aggressive and not venomous, and they can be helpful rounding up other small insects into their nests.

In Washington state, there are a couple venomous spiders to be on the lookout for, as they can be harmful if you come across them: the black widow and yellow sac spider.

Black Widow Spider Traits

Black Widow Spider
Black Widow Spider

The black widow is one of the most well-known types of venomous spiders and are more in eastern Washington. They are recognizable by their shiny black bodies and the characteristic red hourglass marking on their abdomen. If the spider you see doesn’t have any sort of red or orange marking on the underside of its abdomen, it’s likely a false widow spider instead.

Whether it’s a verified black widow or just a look alike, their bites are something to avoid. Thankfully, these spiders aren’t usually aggressive unless they’re provoked, or if it’s a female guarding her eggs. If you think you’ve been bit by a black widow, seek medical attention immediately.

What to Know about Yellow Sac Spiders

yellow sac spider
Yellow Sac Spider

Yellow sac spiders are also more commonly found in eastern Washington, but they are pale yellow or green in color. You’ll want to watch out for these in the garden during the spring and summer, but they have been known to migrate indoors as it gets cooler outside. Watch any wood piles or garden beds you have, as well as window sills and behind furniture to avoid getting bit.

Yellow sac spiders are also not typically aggressive, so if you are careful about poking around in areas where they are found you should avoid a bite. Brushing a spider off you as opposed to squashing it is helpful in avoiding an accidental bite.

Washington Spider Safety

You don’t typically face a lot of structural damage when it comes to spiders being in your space, except for an accumulation of their nests. They can pose a physical danger, as their bites are typically painful and leave a welt.

Here are some ways you can make your home less attractive to spiders and avoid running into them unaware:

  • Regularly clean and vacuum under furniture, around window sills, and in corners.
  • Keep your attic and crawl spaces clear of any piled up or cluttered objects
  • Shake off any clothing that hasn’t been worn in a while, or that’s been stored in a garage to ensure nothing has settled into it.
  • Wear protective gear, like gloves and long sleeves, when gardening or moving wood piles
  • Tightly fit any window screens and caulk small cracks to avoid them getting inside your home.

If you know or suspect you’ve been bitten by a spider, wash the bite site thoroughly with soap and water, ice and dress it to reduce swelling, and monitor it for a few days to make sure it isn’t becoming infected. If symptoms persist after several days, seek medical attention.

Spider Control

Cascade Pest Control has been offering pest and spider control services throughout Seattle, Washington since 1979. Our technicians are well-equipped with the knowledge and ability to take care of any spider or other pest issues that are plaguing you. Our eco-friendly, thorough pest control services ensure you’ll be well-protected on your schedule year-round.

Call 888-989-8979 today for a spider control service quote!

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