There are over 3,000 different species of spiders in the U.S., ranging from the almost invisible small jumping spider to the uncomfortably large desert tarantula. While all but one family of spiders are venomous, only a very small few are poisonous spiders and pose a threat to humans. However, the few that do pose a danger are serious threats. But by having a plan of action in place, you can minimize the danger of a bite.”

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Markings: Black widows are usually about 0.5 inches long and identified by a glossy black with a red or deep orange hourglass marking on the underside of their abdomen.
Habitat: Closed and protected areas such as woodpiles. Can be found in any area where insects are common.
Threat Level: High

Markings: Light brown in color with a dark violin shape on the upper part of its body. Most are 0.25 to 0.5 inches in size. Unlike most spiders that have eight eyes, the brown recluse has six eyes.
Habitat: Brown recluse spiders are found throughout the U.S., with predominance in the South.
Threat Level: High

Markings: Hobo Spiders can reach up to 2” in length and are light brown in color with several chevron shaped markings on the abdomen.
Habitat: Common in the Pacific Northwest
Danger: Medium

Markings: Brown or greyish in color with dark stripes near the head. They have distinctly long spinnerets.
Habitat: Common in the Pacific Northwest
Threat Level: Low

Markings: Wolf Spiders are usually 0.5 to 1 inch in length with a greyish brown body. They have a distinct Union Jack impression on their backs.
Habitat: Common across the U.S.
Threat Level: Low

This article was originally published in the SURVIVOR’S EDGE ™ Summer 2015 issue. Subscription is available in print and digital editions here.

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