Currently viewing the category: "Wandering Spiders"

Subject:  Spider found in Walmart bananas
Geographic location of the bug:  New Jersey
Date: 01/09/2019
Time: 11:43 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  A friend found this spider in the bananas they were stocking on a local Walmart. My reverse image search says wolf spider. Facebook comment says tarantula. Can you provide some clarification please? Love the site, and your insightful and thoughtful answers.
How you want your letter signed:  Joshua

Wandering Spider

Dear Joshua,
This is definitely NOT a spider native to New Jersey, and our best guess is that it was imported with the bananas from Costa Rica or Colombia or some other tropical country where they are grown.  It is NOT a Tarantula.  This sure looks to us like a Wandering Spider in the family Ctenidae or a Huntsman Spider in the family Sparassidae.  Here is a FlickR image of a Wandering Spider.  Some Wandering Spiders and Huntsman Spiders are reported to be quite venomous, so the gloves were a smart decision on the part of the handler.

Subject:  Large spider on a palm trunk
Geographic location of the bug:  Macas, Ecuador (Ecuadorian Amazon)
Date: 02/14/2018
Time: 08:29 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  We came across this while hiking in the jungle.  Wasn’t able to find a name for it, but the local person we were with suggested it could jump.
How you want your letter signed:  Mike Edgerton

Wandering Spider, we believe

Dear Mike,
This is really an interesting Spider, but other than to say it appears to be a hunting spider that does not build a web to entrap prey, we aren’t sure about its identity.  Many hunting spiders can jump quite well.  It looks very much like the spider in a posting in our archives, also from Ecuador, that we identified as possibly a Wandering Spider in the genus
Phoneutria, a venomous and potentially dangerous genus.  The spotted legs on your individual look like the spotted legs on an individual in an image on Wikipedia of a Wandering Spider in the genus Phoneutria.  There are many images of Brazilian Wandering Spiders on Primal Shutter and we believe that might be a correct identification for your individual.

Thank you for the information.  After reading more about the spider, I’m glad it didn’t jump!

Subject: Juvenile maybe?
Location: Lupa Masa, east base of Mt.Kinabalu, Sabah
July 29, 2017 2:17 am
I happened to find this at 10pm , 28th July 2017.
I checked a lot of images and there are similar ones when googling Borneo huntsman. Thing is, this one is about 3cm in length.
Sorry the photo isn’t great, because my camera is an ancient lumix compact.
Are we looking at a juvenile?
I’ve seen others with similar colour and shape but way bigger.
Signature: In blood

Huntsman Spider or Wandering Spider?

Dear John,
We are not sure if this is a Huntsman Spider in the family Sparassidae or a Wandering Spider in the family Ctenidae.

Huntsman Spider or Wandering Spider?

Subject:  Wandering Spider from Belize
Location:  Punta Gorda, Belize
May 21, 2017
Hello Daniel:
I continue to check your site regularly (still one of my favourites) but it’s been a while since I offered something for posting. I have been photographing a lot of spiders recently and have developed quite a fondness for wandering spiders (Family Ctenidae). I always look for them when we travel down to Central or South America. They are not hard to find but you generally have to look for them after nightfall. The attached photo is of a wandering spider (Cupiennius salei), one of many encountered on a night hike in a forest near Punta Gorda, Belize, earlier this year. I had already taken one to two photos of this one when it suddenly lunged out of frame to capture this hapless, and somewhat surprised looking, cricket. Have a great summer.

Wandering Spider eats Cricket

Hi Karl,
Thanks for allowing us to post your excellent image of a Wandering Spider,
Cupiennius salei.  The species is pictured on iNaturalist.

Subject: Costa Rica spider
Location: Costa Rica
April 2, 2017 5:13 pm
Any idea of what Genus this spider this is? Found in costa rica in October…
Signature: Thank you

Wandering Spider

We believe this is one of the potentially dangerous Wandering Spiders in the family Ctenidae based on this Photographers Direct image.

Thank you for answering! I’m surprised that we didn’t stumble around more dangerous things. We did find a poison dart frog and a monkey skull that fell from a tree…
See my iNaturalist site at:
– Sarka

Subject: Unknown spider
Location: Mindo Ecuador
April 11, 2015 7:31 pm
Hey Its Carl again from the night walks in the cloud forest Ecuador, could do with some help identifying the family and species of this spider.
Also struggling with this larvae and praying mantis.
Signature: Thanks Carl

Possibly Wandering Spider

Possibly Wandering Spider

Dear Carl,
We believe, though we are not certain, that this might be a Wandering Spider in the genus
Phoneutria, and you may read more about Wandering Spiders on the Museum für Naturkunde Karlsruhe website where it states:  “There is no doubt that the venom of some of the species is quite potent for mammals, including humans.”  We eagerly welcome additional opinions on this identification.  Perhaps Cesar Crash of Insetologia can provide something.  In the future, please submit a single species per submission form as it makes it extremely difficult for us to categorize postings with multiple species.