HUNTSMAN SPIDERS (LARGE)

Heteropoda spp. and Holconia immanis

[Araneida: Heterpodidae]


hntsmanspider

Article author: Bruce Gow

Adult: Huntsman spiders range from 15-40 mm long with a leg span up to 100 mm. The body is oval-elongate and varies in colour. Heteropoda species are brown with small flecks of darker brown on the head, abdomen and legs.Holconia immanis is fawn to grey with a chocolate brown stripe extending halfway down the body. The legs have dark spots and bands. The carapace (head) is very large and has 8 eyes, a pair of fangs and chelicerae. Eyes occur in two rows of four across the front of the carapace. Antennae, wings and cerci are absent in spiders. All 8 legs are similar in shape with the two front pairs being longer than the back pairs. Legs are long, hairy and spread crab-like enabling huntsman spiders to move sideways.


“Huntsman aren’t really aggressive spiders and in most cases they are harmless, feeding on silverfish and cockroaches so they actually assist the pest control business a bit. However, when it comes to having young children around or a complete infestation of Huntsman then you don’t want to take chances.” – Bruce Gow



Reproduction & Life-cycle :Adult females lay eggs within a sac which is glued to a substrate. Egg sacs are large, round, flat and white. Huntsman spiders are monovoltine and juveniles overwinter in the egg sac. Huntsman spiders live under bark of trees, in crevices and on foliage of trees and shrubs. These spiders do not build webs and are active hunters at night.


Below is a video of a Huntsman we had from a few years ago. The young spiderlings had just recently hatched.






Distribution :Huntsman spiders are common all over Australia. Heteropoda species have been recorded from Queensland, Western Australia, New South Wales and the Northern Territory. Holconia immanis is found in Queensland, Northern Territory and New South Wales.



Pest Status :Huntsman spiders are often found in houses and sheds and will feed on household pests such as cockroaches and silverfish. Huntsman spiders are docile and will only bite if handled roughly. The bite can be painful because of the large fangs and can produce mild headaches and local pain and swelling.


A1 Pest Control is always happy to take on more pest control missions. No matter what your problem give us a call and we’ll sort you out! 0417 251 911