Furry Red Spiders
Recently I have been doing alot of yard work and i’ve noticed that there are the strangest bright red furry little spiders or insects crawling around everywhere. They are really slow, and they are about the size of pencil eraser or a little bigger. Some of them actually look like they are outlined in white, and these tend to be a little larger. When they are threatened they curl up into a little ball and seem to like buroughing in the dirt. Can you tell me what these bugs might be? I’ve searched everywhere and havn’t found an answer.

Hi Ashley,
There is a family of mite known as Velvet Mites, Trombidiidae, and one species, the Angelito, Angelothrombium pandorae, is a giant red velvet mite that is found in desert areas. According to Hogue: "These creatures never fail to attract attention because of their large size (the body length of adults is about 1/4 to 3/8 in.) and brilliant crimson furry bodies. The larvae are parasites of grasshoppers, and the adults are predators on subterranean termites. The adults remain in the soil most of the year and spend only a few hours above ground, probably to feast on their prey, which also respond to rains by emerging in numbers. Little else is known of their biology."

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