Orb Weaving Spiders

Araneidae; Tetragnathidae

Orb Weaver Spider

Left: Banded garden spider (Ward Upham, Kansas State University, Bugwood.org) Right: Catface spider (Joseph Berger, Bugwood.org)

Orb weaver

Left: Shamrock orb weaver (David Cappaert, Michigan State University, Bugwood.org) Right: Typical orb web (Tom Bean, Encyclopedia Britannica Online)

Orb weaver

Long-jawed orb weaver (David Cappaert, Michigan State University, Bugwood.org)


  • small to large spiders
  • generally with a large, bulbus abdomen
  • make classic orb-shaped web

Nesting Habits

  • often found around buildings and homes in late summer and early fall, especially around overhanging structures (e.g., porches or entryways) or in ornamental plantings
  • spiders die out every year and leave egg sac behind
  • eggs hatch in spring and spiderlings disperse
  • common near exterior lighting


  • insects and spiders


  • could be a nuisance pest outdoors, especially the webs
  • not known to be a health hazard
  • beneficial

IPM Recommendations

  • Minimize nesting habitat around property.
  • Seal exterior cracks and crevices to reduce daytime hiding places.
  • Install tight-fitting door sweeps at the base of all exterior doors.
  • Install tight-fitting screens in windows.
  • Keep windows closed.
  • Vacuum individuals and webs inside and outside of buildings on a daily basis.
  • Step on or smash individual spiders that enter.
  • Catch and release (with a glass jar) spiders found indoors.
  • Change exterior lighting to sodium vapor bulbs.

Additional Resources:

IPM for Spiders: Integrated Pest Management in Sensitive Environments (University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension)