As you may well know, spiders are eight-legged creatures that belong to the ‘creepy-crawly' Arachnid family. They are a cousin to scorpions, ticks and mites. Spiders are a big help in eliminating other household pests such as flies and cockroaches. They also prey on pest insects that gnaw on our vegetable and flower gardens. However, spiders themselves are also considered pests, whether they are the nomadic spiders that hunt for prey at night like larger animals or the simple web-building spiders.
Nomadic or wandering spiders include the Brown Recluse and the Wolf Spider. Their venomous bites are seldom fatal but very painful and, sometimes, physically debilitating. The female Black Widow's bite may be fatal to children and the elderly.
Most house spiders belong to the not-so-dangerous kind. They too possess a certain amount of venom, an amount insignificant to your body but enough to paralyze small insects. However, they still pose a nuisance to your home. Your ceiling, walls, windows and room corners will be decorated with cobwebs full of bugs long dead and dried. Aside from this disturbing display, these small creatures produce feces that dry and discolor whatever they fall on. That includes your floor, windowsills, walls, shelves and furniture. To save you the hassle of having to deal with all these, here are a few tips:
Eliminate conditions that are conducive to hiding/breeding spots of spiders.
- Make it your daily routine to sweep off or vacuum spider webs between and under furniture.
- Make it a priority to seal off any cracks on walls or in the ceiling. Keep window screens and door sweeps closed. Inspect things first for insects and spiders before bringing them from your garage and into your house.
- Remove unnecessary clutter inside your home such as old boxes, unused pots and pans, tires and other junk.
- Use cleaning materials that have natural spider extermination repellants such as crab apples, lemon and pine scents, eucalyptus and other scented oils. You may also spray the possible entry points with these scents.
- At night, turn off outdoor lights. Spiders feed on little insects that are attracted to bright light.
- Keep your garden free from tall grass, weeds and shrubs to prevent spider habitats.
You may use mechanical or pesticide-free items such as sticky traps. However, only adult spiders, their eggs not included, fall victim to this maneuver.
If there is dire need for pesticide intervention but without wanting to place you and your family's health in harm's way, you may try using a pesticide with denatonium benzoate as the active ingredient. This stable and inert powder is recommended by both the National Safety Council and the American Medical Association to be added to products that are defined as mild to moderately toxic. It has been approved as an alcohol denaturant in more than 40 countries and is also added to shoeshine products, batteries, household and home improvement products, and cosmetics.
If you prefer expert assistance, you may contact Green Approach to Pest Control. Instead of using traditional deadly insecticide powder that causes allergic reactions in humans, they use the Integrated Pest Management (IPM) approach, offering non-toxic or best-reduced toxicity pest control products that are natural-based, organic and biodegradable. Plus, they try to limit the use of these products and your exposure to them by primarily targeting entry points, feeding and nesting grounds.
Nevertheless, the best tip goes with the age-old saying, "Prevention is better than cure." To exterminate spiders from your home, simply keep them from entering in the very first place. It'll save you a lot of health, wealth and time.