The webs created by American House Spiders are classic Halloween webs: tangled messes in all corners of the attic or windows. This type of web is called a cobweb. It is not uncommon for multiple females to have their webs in close proximity to one another. The presence of this spider adds a spooky atmosphere to old and abandoned buildings and homes.
The American House Spider is a Comb-Footed spider. It has long, skinny legs and comb-like hairs on the back tarsi ('ankles'). They fling strings of their spider silk at insects that get entangled in their web. The victim is then bitten, injected with venom and eaten at a later time. It is moved from the web to allow other prey to fall into the trap.
They have bulbous abdomen, neither spherical nor flat. This spider is inconspicuous and rarely bothers humans. They may opt to 'play dead' if threatened. If handled roughly though, they may bite. Their venom is not lethal to humans like their relative's, the Black Widow.
Smaller males approach a female's web when ready to mate. A courtship 'dance' or ritual follows, ensuring the spiders do not attack each other. Watch below to see a part of this ritual:
Females lay eggs in a pear-shaped, brownish egg case and hangs it from the web. Females guard their eggs until they hatch and can live fore more than a year.
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