November 3, 2022

Hobo Spider vs. Wolf Spider- Identification Tips

Oh no! Not a spider!

There are many spider species throughout Washington state, but how can you tell these creepy crawlers apart?

You may need to look closely at the arachnids in your home to understand the differences between a hobo spider vs. a wolf spider. But don’t worry! Zunex is here to help! 

Hobo Spider vs. Wolf Spider Appearance, 

One of the key differences between these two spiders is their appearance. From a distance, it’s easy to mistake one for another, but these pests actually look very different!

Wolf spiders are larger than most other spiders you’ll find indoors. Typically reaching lengths upwards of two inches in size, wolf spiders may overshadow the smaller and less imposing hobo spider. 

Hobo spiders are usually half of an inch or an inch smaller than an average wolf spider you see indoors. Wolf spiders aren’t the largest species in the United States, but they are much bigger than most other pests you’ll see indoors!

While hobo spiders share one singular coloration, wolf spiders can appear in many colors, like brown, black, and tan. Did you find a tan spider with a dark brown pattern on the lower portion of its body? You may have a hobo spider infestation. 

Plus, wolf spiders are hairy little critters, while hobo spiders tend to have smaller and harder-to-see tufts of hair scattered around their body. When you spot a wolf spider, you can easily identify it from its body-wide fur.

Spider Habitats 

Wolf spiders can pop up anywhere in your home, but they are typically close to the ground in corners, closets, basements, or other forgotten spaces. These hunting spiders don’t craft intricate webs and instead prefer to hunt on their own for food. 

Unlike wolf spiders or other common species, hobo spiders don’t create a traditional spider web. These pests are considered funnel web spiders, crafting a funnel-shaped web and waiting near an end opening to snatch wandering insects. 

Like wolf spiders, hobo spiders prefer to populate ground-floor spaces like garages or basements. Often regarded as poor climbers, hobo spiders aren’t usually houseguests in upstairs areas or attics.

Because they spend most of their time near the ground, you can find either of these pests in or beside storage boxes, windows, doorways, around baseboards, or anywhere near cracks and crevices that may lead to the outdoors. 

When outdoors, wolf spiders regularly inhabit wood piles and grassy locations. The spiders could congregate here if you have accumulated grass clippings or leaf piles. You can also find these pests under rocks or debris piles in your yard. 

Hobo spiders may live in similar locations, but these pests prioritize dark and secluded areas to avoid interacting with humans or other predators outdoors. They may flock toward sheds or other rarely used structures in your yard. 

Because wolf spiders don’t weave webs to catch their prey, you’re more likely to spot them around your home or yard. Hobo spiders tend to stick to their webs until the male spiders begin venturing out during the mating season. 

Hobo Spider vs. Wolf Spider Bites

Spider bites aren’t fun, but only two species in the United States cause serious side effects. The brown recluse and black widow spider bites can result in necrotic skin injuries or severe illness. 

While these spider bites can send you rushing to the doctor, hobo and wolf spiders won’t typically cause you any ill effects beyond swelling, pain, and redness. 

Despite their size, wolf spiders are generally docile creatures with relatively mild venom. Most wolf spider bites are only as painful as a bee sting, and symptoms won’t stick around longer than a few days. 

You may experience a slightly more severe reaction when bitten by a hobo spider, but these pests aren’t medically significant. In the past, a hobo spider’s bite was likened to a brown recluse’s bite, but you shouldn’t experience similar profound effects. 

If a hobo spider bites you, you may have a larger wound that scabs over, but rest assured that these wounds aren’t comparable to brown recluse spider bites. However, because hobo spider bites are so rare, it’s difficult to verify the toxicity of their venom.

These pests are frightening, but you shouldn’t fret about them causing you any harm. Spiders typically won’t approach you and only bite when intimidated or accidentally pressed against your body. Check out how this hobo spider refuses to bite even when threatened! 

Never attempt to handle a spider, as they may bite if they perceive you as a threat. If you’re trying to eliminate the spider in your home, stop it or capture it to place it outdoors, away from home. 

Treating Spider Bites

Unless you have an allergic reaction, you can typically treat most spider bites similarly. Brown recluse or black widow spider bites will require medical intervention, but hobo spiders and wolf spider bites usually won’t cause any severe symptoms. 

Always consult with a doctor if an unknown spider bites you. If you begin to experience adverse reactions following a spider bite, a medical professional can administer the proper treatment to keep you safe, like creams or antibiotics. 

You can care for your wounds alone at home for typical spider bites. Besides regularly cleaning the bitten spot, apply a cold compress or ice pack to reduce the swelling, redness, and pain you experience. 

After a few days, you should notice a decrease in symptoms and discomfort. 

Avoiding Spider Bites

A hobo spider vs. wolf spider bite may not cause many ill effects, but no one wants to deal with painful or itchy bites! Here are a few ways to avoid spider bites and keep yourself safe.

Check your shoes: Spiders may accidentally crawl into your shoes to burrow down. If you have spiders in your home, store your shoes or shake them before putting them on. 

Shake your clothing: If you store your clothing on coat hangers away from the ground, you shouldn’t worry about a spider biting you. However, always search through any clothing left on the floor or in boxes. 

Clean any visible cobwebs: While wolf spiders don’t create webs, you can avoid a hobo spider bite by removing any visible signs of spiders to ensure these pests don’t stick around for too long. 

Avoid handling spiders: Even if you’re a bug lover, we suggest leaving these tiny pests on the ground or outside. Don’t pick up any spiders in your home to place outdoors. Trap the spider with a glass or bowl and tack it outdoors to avoid killing them. 

Don’t forget; you can always rely on Zunex Pest Control to lend a hand whenever you have a difficult spider infestation indoors! 

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