What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

German Spider
Sat, Oct 25, 2008 at 3:56 PM
Hi, WTB!
I would say that I’m a great fan, but I know that you all probably know that whoever sends you photos has to at least have an interest in your site. So yeah, another of the hundred fans of the website. Great Job!
But onto my story:
I went to Germany this summer, and While I was at Neuschwanstein Castle in Bavaria, our group went below the castle to see a grotto. Inside, when everyone was looking at the pictures and sculptures put there by the king, yours truly was taking snapshots of the spiders living around the cave floor. This one in particular caught my eye. The light from the flash casts an awful glare in one photo, but the others I think show it pretty well. This spider was large in my mind at the time, but now that I seriously think about it, the arachnid couldn’t have been bigger than three inches stretched out.
Although, that’s why I’m asking experts: you.
Thank you much in advance, and I hope that you’ll be able to identify this critter!
Zachary Boyden
Bavaria, Germany

Cobweb Spider from Bavaria

Cobweb Spider from Bavaria

Hi Zachary,
Thanks for your kind letter.  We are not able to identify your spider species, nor the genus, but we are confident that this is a Cobweb Spider or Comb Footed Spider in the family Theridiidae.  Most spiders in this family are harmless, but it also includes the Widows and the notorious Australian Redback Spider.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

One Response to Cobweb Spider in Germany

  1. Catherine Wylde says:

    Hey Mr. Bugman –

    THANK YOU FOR YOUR WEBSITE!! —-Just now discovered it doing a Google Search for info on the Stink Bug actually, as they have been hanging out on my 2nd floor window screens the past few months, & I was only able to ID them when I caught the tail-end of a blurb about them on a local TV news station. My curiosity was piqued by their name, because several times recently, I have noticed some pretty foul odors in my apartment which have been indistinguishable to me. I spent most of my adult life in LA, CA, and about 10 years in Chicago, but I have only lived in this area since January 1 of this year, which is fairly rural, surrounded by farmland and woods, and is right on the Mississippi, across from Davenport, IA. —So – what I have learned so far about the myriad environmental factors and issues affecting life and living conditions would not come close to filling a thimble.

    The sites I have perused so far were quite scientifically technical, and never did mention a thing about the actual “stink capabilities”, causation & triggers thereof, or relative habits of any of the species of stink bug – native American or Japanese imports. I’d also been wondering about the dozens of many-legged wormy-looking little creatures that I have been finding shamelessly wandering around my apartment anywhere they please – any time of day they please – most often across the carpet, or floor, in every room, in the bathtub, in my bed – appearing, with no warning, climbing out of my pillowcases, and one day last week I watched one explore my entire kitchen {about 8′ x 20′}, checking out the land beneath the frig, the cat food – which was ultimately rejected, and I allowed him his final leg of the expedition – into one of the lower cupboards housing pots and pans, which he entered slipping easily underneath the molding. Perhaps he was claustrophobic – he exited fairly quickly – and as has been my habit, I enticed him to board a piece of typing paper and deposited him near a wall in the hallway outside of my apartment. I decided he must be a centipede – having done a poor imitation of a caterpillar, which I only considered once for a few scant seconds…….when I made a mental note to look him up on the internet at my first opportunity.

    My research today was actually triggered by my newfound concerns about the Stink Bugs, which I have been watching light on my screens with great interest, and greater ignorance, until I caught the mention on television – but alas, too late to hear any actual information. And so – it is while giving Google a go, that lo and behold, I practically stumble into your website, and trip over your pictures and comments about the Very Type of Centipede who has regularly been visiting me within, and here, on your site, I unexpectedly discover about the fact that they have some kinds of foul odor that THEY emit.

    Right now I cant recall whether or not the Stink Bugs ever got inside……I’ve been extremely busy, much of the time spent in the final stages of organizing and settling my new place, which yet includes the unpacking and rearranging of an abundance of “stuff” {lotta hobbies}, and many boxes of paper files – I’m a writer – {and NO – I don’t have cockroaches}……….but I’m very frequently lost inside my head somewhere when I’m doing mundane things……so sometimes things escape me.

    So, here’s the thing: You may think I’m a bit whacked when I tell you this – some people do anyway {smile} – but for years I have occaisionally experienced olfactory hallucinations……. no drug inducement, I assure you. It’s rare – but it’s real. For example, when I lived in the desert in California, several times I experienced the smell of hamburgers being grilled at about 2:00 or 3:00 in the morning. Trust me – nobody was barbecuing at that time. There were a couple of times I’d be driving alone in my car, and suddenly it was filled with the scent of a familiar perfume…….that I did not possess.

    Just in the past 2 -3 weeks, maybe a half dozen times or so, I walked into my apartment after being out, or simply went from one room into another down the hall, and smelled some god-awful odor far worse than my cat’s litter box – but different. But still I immediately cleaned the litter, then took out all the garbage from every room around the apt, sniffed the outside air at every window, checked my own self out, my dirty clothes, and sprayed Febreze and pet odor sprays in every room……

    Honest to God – I didn’t know what to think – If it was me, or what…….I figured maybe one of the cats got sick, or someone was having a plumbing tragedy………I knew it wasn’t skunk…..Then – one morning last week I was dreaming one of my “almost like going to the movies” kind of dreams, and in my dream I started smelling the distinctively foul odor of human excrement. This kind of thing Never happened to me before. You know how when you’re having a really stressful dream you can become sorta conscious of trying to pull yourself up out of it? Well – I was doing just that…….and I woke up a bit groggy……dazed and confused……. and I lay in bed for a few minutes – kind of in a stupor a little bit – thinking about how incredulous it was…… and then I realized I could still smell it. Seriously. You can’t make this stuff up.

    At that point I was becoming convinced it was all in my head. I finally called my friend downstairs to come up and tell me if she could smell anything funky. She couldn’t. But time had passed…….I had sprayed out any trace of a substance with an odor, and I always keep my windows open to keep the air fresh, and moving, whenever weather permits.

    So then – Coincidentally – just a few days after the dream incident, I come to find out that these insects I’ve been watching, clinging to my screens, flitting off & coming back…….that I found so interesting to study, were named “Stink Bugs”. Naturally, I got to thinking, and wondering.

    And – it was only by checking out your website that I found out about the centipedes throwing off an odor sometimes…….which I never heard before…….and I still havent tracked down the info about the “Stink” in Stink Bug…… But it is hard to imagine that a little ol’ critter as big as your thumb nail could clear a room in a manner of seconds.
    But – then again – I gotta remember that spiders and such, much smaller than that, can kill you with one quick poke of a stinger. So as you can well imagine – at this point I don’t know what to think!!!!

    So – what I would like to know is, can / do – either or both of these insects cause that foul of, and that strong of, an odor? I am well aware that I have always been hypersensitive – far more than most people – physically, emotionally, in every way……and hyper-aware when hit by pretty much anything affecting the sensory systems, internally and externally. Comes with the creative territory, doncha know.

    But still – It’s hard for me to believe that my senses, and my imagination, are conjuring up these smells that are strong enough to make you want to vacate where you are. And, yes, I do well recognize the possibility that the odors are coming from another source altogether – and not remotely connected to my psyche or your entomology. I’d just really like a starting point based upon a solid, factual basis.

    I hope you can help me……..and if you can’t, I hope that at the very least, for all of your time that I’ve taken up with my lengthy explanation of the situation, I’ve been able to at least hold your interest, have perhaps provided some enlightenment for you about a phenomenon you are most likely unfamiliar with, and perhaps even a modicum of amusement with a smile or two, while you were reading.

    Thank you for your time and for whatever attention you can give this. I really am most grateful that your group exists, and for your collective willingness to educate and assist the far less knowledgeable public, most of us whom find our skin crawling when in the presence of one of your fascinating little creatures, be they crawling creepily, immobilized by one mad squishing blow, or merely by having their image captured in a colorful 8 by 10 centimeter glossy featured in the Centerfold of Entomology Monthly. ……….. And, when I am a bit more flush, I will happily make a little contribution to your cause through PayPal……so if my writing didn’t bring forth a smile, perhaps that will.

    Do take care, be well, and I hope to hear from you at your convenience.

    Very sincerely,
    Catherine {Cat} Wylde

    Please look for me on FB, and I hope you will check out some of my writing pieces on my Blog Site when I begin to publish, at www.http://BloggeramaMama.WordPress.com
    Thank you

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