What the hell kind of spiders are these!?
May 3, 2005 8:24 PM   Subscribe

I walked out to my car and came across a big cluster of little yellow spiders (240kb jpg of the whole disgusting mass or a little 8kb detail of just a few of them). They seem to have little, black smiley faces on their abdomens. I can’t identify them online. Since I understand spiders that look alike differ by region, I live in Portland, OR. Are they dangerous? How should I deal with them? I hosed some of them off the car, but more have gotten inside!
posted by mph to Pets & Animals (9 answers total)
Best answer: They look like kind of like these

more information here
posted by Apoch at 9:15 PM on May 3, 2005

So cute! Yellow is often used by animals as a warning of poison -- but it's also used by "free riders" who present the warning without the actual venom to back it up.
posted by orthogonality at 9:19 PM on May 3, 2005

Best answer: It's definitely spider-spawning time in Portland. I've seen masses of baby spiders just like that before. Few of them will live to adulthood (most of them eat each other) and I doubt they're dangerous. They're so tiny that there's not much you could do about them, anyway.
posted by xil at 9:20 PM on May 3, 2005

Response by poster: They look like kind of like these (Araneus diadematus)

They do. And more searching on that name finds more that look like that. It looks like the "smiley face" pattern goes away when they mature, and they become a kind of spider I saw a lot of at the apartment I just moved from here in Portland.

This being a new place, and with no sign of any other mature spiders yet, I freaked out. I mean... during the move-in inspection, killer spiders were something we didn't think to ask about.

Most of them are gone, but I still find them roaming around the inside of the car now and then, and a bunch of them managed to nest in the gap between the rubber seal and frame of the back door. Seems like it's ok to relax, though.
posted by mph at 9:51 PM on May 3, 2005

Aww those are cute! The spiders I have crawling around (in Portland) have these HUGE fangs...so very not cute.
posted by yodelingisfun at 9:59 PM on May 3, 2005

UGH! They are sooo NOT cute! Run away!
posted by deborah at 6:25 PM on May 4, 2005

Best answer: Those are harmless, no need to hose them off your car. My friends and I used to watch the baby spiders hatch, and we'd blow on them to make them scatter. We thought they were cute.

An egg sac releases hundreds of them, but 99% of them won't be around within the next few days. Don't worry about them in your car, they'll die off or find a way out. Like anything else, spiders only stick around if there's food.
posted by Salmonberry at 7:24 PM on May 4, 2005

Just to piggy back, anyone know of any translucent looking spiders you might find in florida. I clealy remember going out to my car one morning, reaching for the car door handle, and having one crawl on my hand and see another dash across the roof. Freaked me out, and still does to this day.
posted by Derek at 1:30 AM on May 5, 2005

Here in FL, where I live, there seem to be certain species of spider that flourish in and on cars. I don't know if they are recently evolved or have been around for millennia. Surely, I'm not the only one who's been driving along in the car when suddenly a spider drops down right in front of your face on a silken thread and you almost careen into the car in the next lane trying to get the thing away from you...
posted by wsg at 2:13 AM on May 5, 2005

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