red legged purse spider in Texas
Hi There!
My daughter pulled this spider out of our pool last summer. We had never seen anything like it before. I was leaning to relating it to tarantulas and my other daughter was leaning toward trapdoor types. It has taken us months to identify it. Sadly it did not live. Our question if you have time to respond is… Are they still on the endangered species list? We live in The Woodlands Texas just north of Houston. The area is very wooded and much has remained natural.
Denise Dailey

Hi Denise,
To the best of our knowledge, the Red Legged Purseweb Spider, Sphodros rufipes, is still considered endangered. At any rate, despite its fierce appearance, it is harmless and should not be killed. This is truly a gorgeous and unforgettable species. Thanks so much for sending us your photo of the unfortunate drowning tragedy. Male Mygalomorphs, including Tarantulas, Trapdoor Spiders and Purseweb Spiders, often drown in swimming pools. The males are mobile and wander in search of mates, resulting in their demise when they encounter swimming pools.

Location: Houston, Texas

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