Connecticut is home to many different species of spiders, and most of them have their own unique habits or appearance. From the large banana spider to the common house spider, you can find a variety of these arachnids in the homes and gardens of Connecticut. In this article we show you twelve spiders commonly found in the state of Connecticut.
12 Common Spiders in Connecticut
1. Giant Lichen Orb Weaver
Scientific Name: Araneus bicentenarius
This orb weaver ranges in color from yellow to grayish green and has orange and black legs. The giant lichen orb weaver is found in the woods on trees covered with lichens and has orb-shaped webs up to eight feet wide. They usually hide from predators like birds during the day and are most active at night.
2. Banana Spider
Scientific Name: Trichonephila clavipes
Banana spiders are orb weavers, building webs that can stretch several feet wide. This species has bright yellow abdomens like a banana, which is where the name comes from.
The females are quite large and can grow up to three inches in length, including leg span. The males are significantly smaller and only grow up to ¾ of an inch long.
3. American Grass Spider
Scientific Name: Agelenopsis
The American grass spider, also known as a funnel-web spider, builds cave-like funnel-shaped webs in the grass. This spider is unique because it hunts prey and uses a web to catch prey.
The American grass spider can move very quickly to pounce on prey and drag it back into the web, or it can wait for an insect to get entangled in the funnel web. These brown and tan spiders have two dark brown or black lines running down the top of the cephalothorax or head region.
4. Black and Yellow Garden Spider
Scientific Name: Argiope aurantia
This large orb weaver spider has a body length of up to one inch, not including the legs, and builds webs up to two feet in width. As the name suggests, they are found in garden areas and are typically black and yellow. Their ovular abdomens have yellow and black markings, and their long legs are black with yellow or orange markings.
5. Red Spotted Ant Mimic Spider
Scientific Name: Castianeira descripta
The red-spotted ant mimic spider is black with bright red markings. It features a white line that runs down the top of its back. This sneaky spider tricks other insects by walking on the back three sets of legs while holding the other two legs up.
This serves to mimic the antennae of an ant, causing the insects to think the spider is a harmless ant. The red-spotted ant mimic spider uses this trick to get close enough to grab and kill its prey.
6. Woodlouse Spider
Scientific Name: Dysdera crocata
The woodlouse spider primarily eats woodlice, which is where it gets its name. Instead of building webs to catch prey, this species hunts for food. They are yellowish-brown and reddish-brown in color.
Females are slightly larger than males, measuring a little over half an inch. The woodlouse spider can bite humans if provoked, but they are not venomous.
7. Dark Fishing Spider
Scientific Name: Dolomedes tenebrosus
The dark fishing spider can grow up to three inches, including leg span. They are a mixture of light brown and light and dark gray.
You will most commonly find this spider in Connecticut near the water. They prefer to hunt at night and consume insects and small fish. The dark fishing spider can walk across the water’s surface to hunt for food.
8. Common House Spider
Scientific Name: Parasteatoda tepidariorum
The common house spider, also known as the American house spider, is one of the most common spiders found in Connecticut. These spiders are brown with white or black markings on their abdomens.
They have spindly legs and are responsible for many of the wispy cobwebs you may see in your home. They typically live in windows and other undisturbed areas. These spiders are not aggressive and tend to keep to themselves.
9. Broad-Faced Sac Spider
Scientific Name: Trachelas transquillus
The broad-faced sac spider is typically found outside under leaves and stones but may wander into homes when it cools off in autumn. The females can grow to ten millimeters in length, and the males can grow to six millimeters.
This spider is dark reddish brown with a light yellow or gray abdomen. The bite of the broad-faced sac spider can be painful and can cause a secondary infection due to the species’ habit of feeding on dead insects.
10. Furrow Orb Weaver
Scientific Name: Larinioides cornutus
The furrow orb weaver gets its name from the zigzag shape that runs down the top side of its tan, brown, or grayish abdomen. The pattern resembles the furrow made by a plow.
Unlike most spiders, males and females are similar in size. They can commonly be found in the eaves of homes, especially near porchlights where insects are plentiful.
11. Northern Black Widow
Scientific Name: Latrodectus variolus
The Northern black widow is shiny and black like its Southern relative, but the hourglass of the Northern black widow female is split or broken. The males are smaller than the females and are often at risk of being eaten by the females after mating.
The females of this species are venomous to humans, but the males and juveniles are harmless. This species can be found in dark corners of sheds, garages, and other shelters in Connecticut.
12. White Micrathena
Scientific Name: Micrathena mitrata
This small orb weaver can be found in forests and around the homes and gardens of Connecticut. The white micrathena is recognizable by its black and white abdomen, with four black spikes protruding from the sides.
This species builds orb-shaped webs that are slightly angled instead of completely vertical like the webs of other orb weavers. The females, somewhat larger than the males, can grow up to six millimeters in length.