What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Unknown Unusual Spider
Location: Stoughton, WI
September 14, 2014 7:51 pm
We’ve got them too!
We have an 103 year old four square and found them in the basement cellar under the porch. We never go there, but we went down there when we found a chipmunk coming in and out from our porch foundation. We went down to flush the chipmunk out and fill in the hole when we discovered these fascinating creatures … albeit creepy!
We live just south of Madison, WI
We had never seen them before.
We have the same questions as everyone else.
Why is this fungus suddenly appearing?
And, is it harmful to humans?
Signature: Mariah

Fungus Riddled Spider

Fungus Riddled Spider

Dear Mariah,
These are probably the best images we have received of Cellar Spiders infested with a deadly fungus.

Seemingly contagious Spider FungusSeemingly contagious Spider Fungus

 

Fungus Infested Spider 

Fungus Infested Spider

Additional feedback from commenter KennyMellon:
I just feel its more then coincidence that I’ve been in nearly 2000 basements in this little town, and when I’ve seen this Cave Crickets have always been present. And in complete reverse if no crickets, than normal spiders. I came across a basement the other day that had probably 50 or better all white coated spiders. Kinda eerie.

Perhaps there is a relationship between the humidity preferred by Cave Crickets and the humidity that encourages the growth of the fungus.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination
Location: Stoughton, Wisconsin
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9 Responses to Fungus Riddled Spiders

  1. Amy says:

    I found similar spiders dead under my trailor. White fungus looking with a big ball of white in the middle in little white ball specs on the legs.

  2. emily says:

    Found them in my garden shed this spring 2015. Never saw before either. Is it a new phenomenon or a sudden increase in fungal activity? Greenfield, MA

  3. aaron says:

    Is this fungus deadly to humans or just spiders

  4. Lynda says:

    We have a room in the basement that has a dirt floor and we’re trying to remodel it. There’s so many of these spiders and nest. How do you get ride of them plus are they harmful?

  5. KennyMellon says:

    I think there is a connection with spider crickets. I work in alot of basements and the only time I see em is when there seems to be a buch of spider crickets and vice versa

    • bugman says:

      Prior to your comment, we were not aware that Spider Cricket is an accepted common name for Camel Crickets or Cave Crickets in the family Rhaphidophoridae. That stated, both Spider Crickets and Cellar Spiders prefer the same conditions, so it makes sense that they would be found in the same locations. Beyond that, we don’t know if there is a connection between Spider Crickets and the actual fungus.

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