• Wolf spider
  • Tiger spider
  • Female Redback spider
  • Wolf spider
  • Tiger spider
  • Female Redback spider

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Spiders

Spiders are a pest when they bite, produce unsightly webbing or cause fear in those with arachnophobia.

Identifying

There are many people with a fear of spiders. Nearly all spiders produce venom* but there are few spiders in New Zealand that can cause harm to humans. They include the white tail spider, the Australian Redback and the native katipo.

Many spiders produce webs and webbing that can be unsightly around the eaves and gutters of houses or on fences and furniture.

*Only two spider families, Uloboridae and Holarchaeidae, are known to be non-venomous, i.e., lacking venom glands; however, their fangs can inflict infections spread through the skin, which in theory could represent more danger than from bites of non-lethal venomous spiders.

Solving

Crawling insects and spiders are effectively controlled by treating surfaces with residual insecticide. Insects and spiders that contact treated surfaces are rapidly killed and in many cases the surfaces become repellent to insects and so acts as a barrier to insect pests.

Inside

  1. If the areas to be treated are dusty or greasy it is good practise to clean these down first to prevent runs and for the best effect of the treatment. Cover or remove all fish tanks, pets, food, food utensils, food preparation surfaces, clothes, toys and bedding. Pull furniture away from walls so that you can get a clear run of spraying rather than having to stop to move each item of furniture.
  2. For long term control, apply NO Spiders, NO Bugs Indoor  or NO Bugs Super  as a coarse mist around the edges of rooms, against skirting boards and kick boards. Pay particular attention to places where insect pests might gain entry to each room. 
  3. In hard to reach places, such as roof voids, use NO Bugs Bug Bomb  or NO Bugs Borafume  which quickly kill insects present at time of release.

Outside

  1. Choose a still day with a forecast of dry conditions for the next 6 hours.
  2. Apply NO Spiders  or NO Bugs Super  as a coarse mist to exterior walls, window frames, door frames, vents, pergolas and other surfaces which pest insects and spiders might contact. This will act barrier to many pests and will prevent the unsightly appearance of spider webbing build up around the home.
  3. Spray a band around the base of all external walls. Pay particular attention to doorways and around windows and vents. For spiders pay attention to gutters and downpipes and other areas where spiders hide or build webs.
  4. Leave for at least 2 days before removing spider webbing with a dry brush.

Note: Daddy Long Legs Spiders often cause problems by building untidy webs in the corners and on ceilings in the home. Their long legs and tiny bodies enable them to with stand walking on insecticide treated surfaces and can be more difficult to control for this reason. But direct spraying of the spiders or use of Kiwicare fumigators will control them.

Did you know

Spiders differ from insects in possessing 8 legs instead of 6 and only two main body parts, head and thorax. The thorax is a fusion on the thorax and abdomen found separate in insects. Spiders have multiple pairs of eyes, 4 pairs of legs, mouth parts and silk spinning spinnerets.

Female spiders are very good mothers and are often seen tending their egg sacs, "ovoid papery balls", containing up to 200 - 300 young at a time. After the first moult the young spiders are totally independent.

Spider silk has many uses. They use it to weave webs and silk snares, catch prey, escape from danger, survive winters draped in silk 'sleeping bag', build nests for young, send and receive vibrating signals, truss up prey for storage, and "transportation" via silken ropes, parachutes or balloons (often aided by the wind; special insect traps on aircraft have collected spiders from altitudes of nearly 5 kilometres).

Palps, "short leg like organs" exist on either side of the head. Used like hands, these palps are specialised for mating and enable the male to deposit his semen into the female sex organ.

For more information on spiders and their identification check out the Landcare Research or Te Papa websites.

Tips

For best results wash down surfaces to remove dust and dirt before spraying. Allow a couple of days for spiders to rebuild their webs then spray surfaces and webs. Leave for a furhter couple of days and then brush down webbing with a dry brush.

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