Hunting the Hunted: What Eats Huntsman Spiders?

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What Eats Huntsman Spiders

We know that huntsman spiders can eat insects, other spiders, and even small-sized animals like geckos and pygmy possums. But what eats huntsman spiders? Let’s find out!

When walking around in the woods in western Australia, it is quite likely that you will find yourself face to face with one of the world’s fastest spiders, the Huntsman spider.

Known for their size, speed, and crab-like appearance (which is why they are also called giant crab spiders), these spiders are fierce predators.

But nature has a balance to everything, and the hunter can easily become the hunted when faced with a larger or smarter enemy.

Today, let us find out about the place of the Huntsman spiders on the natural food chain and who prey on these predators.

What Eats Huntsman Spiders

Do Birds Eat Huntsman Spiders?

Birds love to eat spiders, and that includes Australian huntsman spiders. Birds can find spiders all over the place, and they are usually pretty easy to hunt.

Birds are one of the primary predators of Huntsman spiders. Some birds that eat spiders are swallows, wrens, owls, crows, tanagers, and bluebirds.

Unlike what most people think, most arachnids are venomous but not poisonous. You can’t get poisoned just by touching a spider; it has to bite you and inject venom for the toxins to take effect.

Birds use this to their advantage, especially when it comes to Huntsman spiders. Huntsman spiders have poor eyesight. They feel their predators through their legs. Birds don’t attack them from the ground but from above, so the poor huntsman never has a chance.

Do Geckos Eat Huntsman Spiders?

The common house geckos crawling in your garden also love to eat Huntsman spiders around them.

Most geckos hunt spiders and small insects as their meal. However, with bigger creatures like the Huntsman spiders, it could go both ways.

In most cases, the geckos are likely to win. But sometimes, the huntsman spider will make a meal out of the gecko too.

What Eats Huntsman Spiders

Do Nematode Worms Eat Huntsman Spiders?

Nematodes are egg parasites (bacteria-eating scavengers). These tiny worms attack the mouth of the spider, paralyzing its fangs, leaving a relatively giant spider incapable of biting and thus hunting.

Once the spider loses its ability to hunt, it will start to die due to a lack of food. Meanwhile, these parasites feed on the bacteria in her body.

Do Wasps Eat Huntsman Spiders?

Yes, wasps, though small in size, can hunt and feed on even giant huntsman spiders. You will be surprised to know that the tiniest of wasps have extraordinary hunting abilities.

Spider wasps are notorious for using huntsman spiders are hosts for their larvae. Spider wasps hunt only those huntsman spiders that are below 6 inches in length. They attack the huntsman spider and then sting and paralyze it, dragging it back to their nest.

The wasp then incubates the spider with exactly one egg, and when the egg hatches, the larva comes out and eats the spider from the inside out. The larva is smart enough to eat the vital organs last, so the spider can live till the very end. Yes, it is a gruesome way to die, indeed.

Do Scorpions Eat Huntsman Spiders?

Scorpions of varying sizes come with their dietary preferences, which include insects, lizards, and other scorpions.

Most scorpions will eat Huntsman spiders if they find one, but it is unlikely that they will choose these arachnids as their regular food.

What Eats Huntsman Spiders

Frequently Asked Questions

Do Daddy Long Legs eat huntsman spiders?

Yes, Daddy Long Legs can eat Huntsman spiders. While they usually hunt smaller spiders and insects, they sometimes feed on bigger spiders like the brown huntsman.

Daddy Long Legs have strong, powerful legs (hence the name) that are well-suited for capturing and killing smaller prey.

What is the lifespan of a huntsman spider?

Huntsman spiders are known to live for an average of two years. Most Huntsman spiders shed off their old skin (molting), which helps them grow.

You can often find this skin on the loose bark on trees or crevices on rock walls, and you might even mistake it for an actual spider. The biggest huntsman spider can grow up to 2 inches with a leg span of 13 inches.

Do huntsman spiders eat other spiders?

The normal diet for a Huntsman spider consists of insects, reptiles, and other spiders as well. It is not an unusual event to see a Huntsman spider eat another spider. Usually, they go for a small species of spider that is easy to hunt.

Can huntsman spiders jump?

Huntsman spiders do not exactly jump. However, they can fall from a surface, and they may land on humans. The way they fall looks like they are jumping because of their crab-like appearance and crouched posture.

Wrap Up

Like every other creature in nature, Huntsman Spiders have their own predators and their prey. There are many surprising and no-surprising entries that you would have seen in this article, but yes, all of them can finish off a huntsman on any given day.

So which one of these predators did you find the most surprising? Let us know in the comments, and thank you for reading!

Authors

  • Bugman

    Bugman aka Daniel Marlos has been identifying bugs since 1999. whatsthatbug.com is his passion project and it has helped millions of readers identify the bug that has been bugging them for over two decades. You can reach out to him through our Contact Page.

    View all posts
  • Piyushi Dhir

    Piyushi is a nature lover, blogger and traveler at heart. She lives in beautiful Canada with her family. Piyushi is an animal lover and loves to write about all creatures.

    View all posts
Tags: Huntsman Spiders

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9 Comments. Leave new

  • Brown Badge Huntsmen – Neosparassus punctatus?

    Reply
  • Poor spiders getting the alien treatment. Quite horrific ending for them if you ask me.

    Reply
  • I was looking at the pictures of the spider wasp and I believe it said they live in Africa but my family and I seen that identical wasp with a spider the same size and color as the one in the photo, in our woods. We live in Amelia, Ohio (USA). I wanted to comment to see if it we are mistaken by what kind of wasp we seen but I’m 100% positive we seen right. At first site it looked as if the spider had the wasp but when we ran off the wasp the spider wouldn’t move and seconds later the wasp was back, it found the spider, and off it went. Is it possible it was a wasp spider in Ohio???

    Reply
  • I see these Wasps capturing Rain Spiders (Huntsman Spiders) quite often here in South Africa where I stay (Randfontein). I have also experienced its sting and I can tell you that this is quite painful in comparison to a bee sting. There were actually a little blood coming out of the sting. But luckily the pain was over quickly and only a little “spot” remained.
    I also captured a photo of this wasp dragging a Rain spider to its nest.
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/149505955@N06/49257441198/in/dateposted/ The one time I saw a lizard and a wasp fighting over a smaller spider.

    Reply
  • I see these Wasps capturing Rain Spiders (Huntsman Spiders) quite often here in South Africa where I stay (Randfontein). I have also experienced its sting and I can tell you that this is quite painful in comparison to a bee sting. There were actually a little blood coming out of the sting. But luckily the pain was over quickly and only a little “spot” remained.
    I also captured a photo of this wasp dragging a Rain spider to its nest.
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/149505955@N06/49257441198/in/dateposted/ The one time I saw a lizard and a wasp fighting over a smaller spider.

    Reply
  • Stephen Nyaori okwengu
    February 17, 2020 4:13 am

    Very informative

    Reply
  • Hi
    Saw one, first time ever, dragging huntsman across front lawn.
    Revesby NSW

    Reply

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