Tarantula or spider??
Location: Yucca Valley, CA
June 1, 2011 12:53 am
Hi, I live in Yucca Valley, CA, in the desert. I see these guys all the time around my house. They are never in webs, so I assume that they are either hunting for food or a mate. They are typically up high, sometimes in cupboards, once in the chimney, I even had one run across my dashboard while driving! I’m extremely afraid of them.
I used to keep several pet tarantulas when I was younger, and I think that knowing what I’m dealing with would ease my fears a bit.
The pics aren’t great, and this wasn’t the largest one I’ve encountered, but hopefully it’s good enough. Thanks!
This is a Giant Crab Spider in the genus Olios. You are correct in that they are hunting spiders and they do not build a web to ensnare prey. They are generally shy, nocturnal hunters and they are considered harmless to humans.
Thank you so much for the reply. I feel a little more comfortable now taking them outside (or asking my boyfriend to move them for me). I felt bad killing them.
Killing them would definitely be unnecessary carnage. We had hoped this magnificent Giant Crab Spider posed agreeably for that series of photos on a quarter, but we have come to fear that this spider might be a corpse. We believe this Giant Crab Spider is Olios giganteus, based on this photo on BugGuide. The description on BugGuide “dark chelicerae, prominent heart mark” fits your individual.
That looks like the one. He was dead, but now I will avoid killing them. Someone told me they were really aggressive, so I haven’t given them a chance.
Hi again Andrea,
We are happy to hear that.