identify my friend (new pic!)

So I live in the middle of an army of these things. I would like to know what they are, but comparing pics I found on the net seems frustrating and futile, and having 2 young kids I thought it might be prudent to find out how much of a punch a bite from one might pack. So anyone recognize my guy here? Keep in mind Im in central Virginia, and that there are lots of these. I say this because the closest match I can find is the Brown Recluse, but Im about 200 mi outside the region where I think they should be found.

Click for larger image

So whadya think....friend or foe?

edit: oh yeah...whole thing (with legs) is just a little bigger than the size of a quarter.

Foe. That looks very close to a Recluse. Better safe than sorry.

Might be one of a variety of Giant House Spiders. Hobo Spiders and Brown Recluse Spiders are often almost indistinguishable from them. There are some good articles on identifying them scattered about the internet, though you need a microscope and a thorough knowledge of spider anatomy to be 100% sure.

I thought Brown Recluses had some kind white identifying mark on them. The Hobo spiders do not, but I didn't think they were in VA (I thought they were mostly out in the far West).

That is what the eyes look like on a brown recluse. I doubt it's a brown recluse because they don't go all the way to where you're at.

But it's better safe than sorry. Get an exterminator that would know and have him get rid of them.

**Edit- On looking at it a second time, that is definately not a brown recluse. It does not have the fiddle shaped marking on the abdomen.

Description courtesy of U.K.'s entomology department.

Though variable in size, adult brown recluse spiders with legs extended are about the size of a U.S. quarter. Coloration ranges from tan to dark brown, and the abdomen and legs are uniformly colored with no stripes, bands or mottling. The legs are long and thin and lack conspicuous spines. For laypersons, the most distinguishing feature of a brown recluse is a dark violin-shaped mark on its back, with the neck of the violin pointing toward the rear (abdomen) of the spider. This feature is consistent in adult brown recluses, but sometimes less obvious in younger spiders.

The bolded knocks your spiders out of contention for being brown recluses.

I hate this thread. I'm gonna be hiding in the corner all damn day.


Possibly a cobweb spider? If it's this, then it's harmless.

Can you post a few more pics? Here's the Virginia Coop Extension guide to VA spiders. It looks a bit like the Recluse, but we can't see the head in your pic to count eyes or look for the fiddle...

Here's an excellent close-up of the Brown Recluse. Note that the legs and other parts are very different from yours in coloration.

Thank you KrazyTaco for keeping me up all night with your first picture. That spider looks seriously pissed.

Can you post a few more pics?

If that's what you want. But do you think we will be able to sleep at night?

Well, there goes my appetite.

I think I found your Arachnid. The House Spider.

Hmmm...but the front legs may not be long enough. Might be a relative, though. This stuff is harder than it looks.

**Edit- Never mind.

Ill try and get a few pics of the head with the next one I find...but that particular one only lived a short few minutes after the posted image.

Both the house spider and cobweb spider posted have very large abdomens proportionately to these guys.

Also these guys don't seem to build webs....or at least we never see them in one. Just free roaming out and about.

I can't see the head, have you considered the cave cricket?

nah Ive seen a lot of those....this is definitely a spider

We start seeing these occasionally around our house every summer:


Everyone around he calls them Wolf spiders. I don't know if that's actually correct but they seem to generally be pretty harmless. They're really attracted to the pool though.

Fun story: I took that picture.

Kiri wrote:

I can't see the head, have you considered the cave cricket?

Crickets, like all insects, have only 6 legs.

Thin_J wrote:

Everyone around he calls them Wolf spiders.

A wolf spider was actually my first guess...but after looking around a bit I think the legs are far too thin for that. Your guy looks a lot meatier than mine.

How did you light that pic btw? I had to use a high powered flashlight for my image, the flash just wont cut it that close in. The image was taken using the macrofocus feature found on Sony cameras. I dont know if its common, or what it actually does to be honest, just that your supposed to use it for close up images. This pic was taken from about 1" over the bugger. No natural light available in the house, or at least not where I find these.

Ill try and flush one out tonite to see if I ca get a mugshot

Pol, your avatar is perfect for this conversation.

That sound you hear is me, screaming like a 8-year old girl.

This thread has gone too long without Clockspider.


That thing looks too heavy to be exploiting the same principles that let most spiders stick to vertical surfaces... I call photoshop.

yeah the noisy outline around the spider doesnt help either

There are more pictures of Clockspider that I've seen before. However, if someone can disprove it then I'll take it.

But you would have crushed my soul.

sorry dude

oh and the wiki is a strong hint as well

Thanks Vrikk.

I think Clockspider is real in the sense that the photos are real (the "noise" around the legs looks to be hair), but it certainly didn't eat the damn clock.

My first impression was that photoshop was implied...but on closer inspection the link in that article says the critters can get up to 11"

sorry, brain doesnt want enormous spider to be real

I've seen wild tarantulas in southern Arizona which are pretty freakishly huge. They don't climb on walls, but they could certainly be mistaken for a black cat by a person with poor vision.

This is a shot I took of my wife holding a Water Spider, or that's what they called it up in Maine. (We rented a house on a lake there in 2005.) Yes, they are big. Notice, it only has six legs. It had lost it's two front legs somehow. We kept it for a few days, feeding it grasshoppers. It laid a large egg sack, so it was obviously a female. Even though it had huge fangs, it never bit my wife and she handled it quite a bit.


As for clockspider, when a .JPG is downsized for web use, you can get those jaggies around objects. So, don't use that as an example of it being shopped.

Example: I took this shot at 6 mega pixels and resized it to 640 x ? to save it on the site. The site chops the picture to about 25k. You can see the jaggies around the feet of the guy dangling from the cell tower.