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Wolf Spider: Friend or Foe?

Wolf spiders (Lycosidae) are among the most common spiders we see in Illinois. They are big, fast spiders that don’t spin webs to catch prey, but instead are often found outside in tunnels and burrows on the ground, under rocks, or in wood and other landscape materials.

However, with cooling temperatures in fall, many people find that wolf spiders will begin to enter their homes in search of warmth. This can be off-putting for most, as these spiders look large and menacing, but there’s good news! Wolf spiders are beneficial predators that prey on common pests in and around the home, including ants, beetles, flies, mosquitoes, and other smaller spiders. They are also generally passive and are unlikely to bite unless they feel threatened.

So if you see a wolf spider in your home, don’t panic! Simply cover it with a cup, slide a piece of paper underneath, and release it outside in a grassy area. That way it can continue to capture pests that might otherwise enter your home. So next time you see a spider, try to see it as a friend, not a foe. 

Image © Ziva_Amir CreativeCommons.com
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