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Spiders in Oregon

There are over 40 different types of spiders in Oregon.

The real number probably runs into the hundreds, but most species are unnamed and poorly documented. In this guide, you’ll learn about all the well-documented spider species you’ll find in the state.

Spiders are fascinating creatures, although they get a bad rep for various reasons. These critters live in a wide range of habitats, but many of them favor moist, secluded areas indoors or vegetation-rich areas outdoors.

These arachnids are incredibly diverse creatures, which means you’ll come across many species that don’t fit common categorizations.

Yes, some spiders are creepy, and some build large webs that can be upsetting to run into. But there are almost just as many that are none of these things. Some are even more stunning than butterflies, and many species don’t build annoyingly large webs.

Although people often fear spiders because they are potentially dangerous, there’s no reason to. Less than 40 of the over 43,000 species worldwide can inflict medically significant bites. In Oregon, only one species can, and even its bites are extremely rare.

Keep reading to learn more about the different types of spiders in Oregon.

Table of Contents

1. Spiders in Oregon
2. FAQ
3. Conclusion

Spiders in Oregon

1. Western Black Widow

Western Black Widow (Latrodectus hesperus) hanging on its web in Roseburg, Oregon, USA
Western Black Widow (Latrodectus hesperus) hanging on its web in Roseburg, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Advanced
  • Family: Theridiidae
  • Scientific Name: Latrodectus hesperus
  • Other Names: Western Black Widow Spider, Western Widow Spider, Western Widow
  • Adult Size: Up to 0.5 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 to 3 years
  • Average Price Range: N/A

The western black widow is Oregon’s only black widow species.

This spider is black with a bulbous abdomen, and it has a reddish hourglass marking on its underbelly. Like the southern black widow, this species’ hourglass marking is unbroken.

Male western black widows are much smaller than females, and their abdomens are less bulbous. Besides being smaller, these arachnids have shorter lifespans and produce less potent venom than their female counterparts.

Although male western black widows die off on their own shortly after mating, many females hasten the process by consuming males immediately after mating. That’s why the spiders are called black widows.

Female western black widows are the deadliest spiders in Oregon. Their venom sometimes triggers latrodectism, a condition marked by vomiting, muscle stiffness, difficulty breathing, and profuse sweating.

In extreme cases, the venom of these spiders kills people. Thankfully, such cases are rare. Most people will be fine following a black widow bite. But children, elderly people, and immunocompromised individuals are at the greatest risk of adverse reactions.

If you suspect a black widow has bitten you, seek medical attention immediately.

You’ll find western black widows indoors and outdoors. Indoors, these critters favor corners, window sills, and secluded places. They build tangled, sticky cobwebs where they live and rely on their cobwebs to catch prey.

Western black widows have poor eyesight, so they detect insects caught in their cobwebs by listening for vibratory signals. Afterward, these arachnids race toward their victims to kill them with venom.

Despite their infamous reputation, western black widows don’t bite humans unprovoked. They run when threatened and only bite as a last resort when unable to escape close contact with humans.

2. False Black Widow

False Black Widow (Steatoda grossa) on a large rock in Washington County, Oregon, USA
False Black Widow (Steatoda grossa) on a large rock in Washington County, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Theridiidae
  • Scientific Name: Steatoda grossa
  • Other Names: Brown House Spider, False Widow,  Dark Comb-Footed Spider, Cupboard Spider
  • Adult Size: 0.25 to 0.4 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 to 6 years
  • Average Price Range: N/A

The false black widow is a relative of true black widows, but it is not as dangerous. Compared to true widows, this species is harmless. Bites don’t cause any symptoms beyond mild pain and itching or redness.

Many people mistake false black widows for true black widows because both species have similar appearances. But unlike black widows, false black widows are usually brown. Dark false widow variants are slightly harder to differentiate.

If you look closely, you’ll notice that dark false widows aren’t black. They are usually very dark brown or purple. However, the most differentiating factor is that false black widows don’t have the reddish hourglass marking characteristic of true black widows.

Although false widows also live outdoors, most encounters happen indoors. These spiders build messy cobwebs to catch small arthropods and are beneficial in controlling indoor pests. That’s because they eat a wide range of arthropods, including true black widows.

Like true black widows, male false black widows are smaller than their female counterparts. They also have much shorter lifespans and are the less encountered of the two sexes.

3. Woodlouse Spider

Woodlouse Spider (Dysdera crocata) on concrete by a metal wall in Beaverton, Oregon, USA
Woodlouse Spider (Dysdera crocata) on concrete by a metal wall in Beaverton, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Dysderidae
  • Scientific Name: Dysdera crocata
  • Other Names: Woodlouse Hunter, Sowbug Hunter, Slater Spider, Long-Fanged Ground Spider, Roly-Poly Hunter, Sowbug Killer, Pillbug Hunter, Cell Spider,  Orange Spider
  • Adult Size: 0.35 to 0.59 inches
  • Lifespan: 3 to 4 years
  • Average Price Range: N/A

Woodlouse spiders don’t build webs to catch prey like other spiders in Oregon. Instead, these spiders are hunters. They prefer to chase down their victims and inject them with venom instead of waiting passively for prey.

Woodlouse spiders are named after woodlice, but not because of any close resemblance. Both species don’t look alike. Instead, woodlouse spiders get their name from their tendency to hunt and feed on woodlice.

You’ll usually find woodlouse spiders in forests and bushes or shrublands. They often hide under debris and rocks near rotting logs harboring plenty of woodlice. This makes hunting their favorite prey easy.

Besides woodlice, woodlouse spiders consume other types of arthropods. They have long, sharp fangs they use to pierce their victims and deliver their lethal toxin. Though painful, this toxin is harmless to humans. Thankfully, the spiders rarely bite people.

These arachnids are reddish, with a dark red carapace and grayish or yellowish abdomen. Unlike most spiders in Oregon, woodlouse spiders have six eyes instead of eight. These eyes have a distinct circular arrangement.

4. Yellow Garden Spider

Yellow Garden Spider (Argiope aurantia) on its web in Vernonia, Oregon, USA
Yellow Garden Spider (Argiope aurantia) on its web in Vernonia, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Araneidae
  • Scientific Name: Argiope aurantia
  • Other Names: Black and Yellow Garden Spider, Black And Yellow Argiope, Golden Garden Spider, Zipper Spider, Steeler Spider, Corn Spider, McKinley Spider,  Zigzag Spider
  • Adult Size: 0.75 to 1.1 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 year
  • Average Price Range: N/A

The yellow garden spider is a stunning orb-weaver common in gardens and other places with plenty of vegetation. Besides gardens in residential areas, you’ll find this species in forests, woodlands, and tallgrass prairies.

It often sits upside-down in the center of its orb-shaped web, waiting for flying insects to get stuck in the strands. It has poor eyesight, so it depends on the vibration trapped insects make to locate its victims. When it pinpoints them, it swoops in to attack.

You can identify the yellow garden sac spider by its bulbous black and yellow belly. The top of the abdomen has a broad dark pattern with multiple pairs of white or yellow spots. The rest of the belly is mostly yellow with spiral black markings.

Like the belly, the legs of this species are black and yellow. The carapace, however, is black and usually covered in silver or whitish hair.

Though they rarely bite people, many homeowners remove the spiders from their gardens after discovering them. This is largely due to the misconception that yellow garden spiders are harmful arachnids.

Yellow garden spiders are harmless to humans. On the contrary, they are beneficial because they control the populations of insect pests around homes and gardens.

5. Northern Yellow Sac Spider

Northern Yellow Sac Spider (Cheiracanthium mildei) on white cloth in Portland, Oregon, USA
Northern Yellow Sac Spider (Cheiracanthium mildei) on white cloth in Portland, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Eutichuridae
  • Scientific Name: Cheiracanthium mildei
  • Other Names: Long-legged Sac Spider, American Yellow Sac Spider
  • Adult Size: 0.16 to 0.40 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 year
  • Average Price Range: N/A

The northern yellow sac spider doesn’t build webs to catch prey like most spiders in Oregon. However, it spins silk sacs to rest in when inactive. That’s why it’s called a sac spider.

This spider is usually greenish-yellow or yellowish-green, but you’ll find variants ranging from whitish to pale brown. Its face is darkened, and the body has no notable pattern besides the short dark line at the top of its abdomen.

Like most hunters, the northern yellow sac spider prefers to stalk its victims before attacking them. It doesn’t use webs, so it relies on its speed and keen eyesight when hunting prey.

Most of this spider’s hunting takes place at night. During the day, it hides in crevices or under debris and leaf litter. Indoors, it might hide in closets, door cracks, or under items that haven’t moved in a long time.

The venom of the northern yellow sac spider is harmless to humans. Most bites don’t trigger any symptoms, but some might. Allergic people are more likely to experience intense pain and dermal reactions.

6. Bold Jumping Spider

Bold Jumping Spider (Phidippus audax) on a purple flower in Benton, Oregon, USA
Bold Jumping Spider (Phidippus audax) on a purple flower in Benton, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Salticidae
  • Scientific Name: Phidippus audax
  • Other Names: Daring Jumping Spider, Bold Jumper,  White-spotted Jumper, White-spotted Jumping Spider
  • Adult Size: 0.25 to 0.75 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 year
  • Average Price Range: N/A

Bold jumping spiders are skilled jumpers, despite their short legs.

They can leap many times their size, sometimes reaching heights up to 50 times their size. Their love for such daring or bold jumps is why they are called bold or daring jumping spiders.

These arachnids have strong back legs that help them perform such impressive jumps. They leap by modifying the blood pressure in their legs before forcefully extending them. These spiders also spin silk draglines to make their jumps easier and prevent accidents.

Of all spiders in Oregon, jumping spiders have the best eyesight. Two of their eight eyes bulge outwards like binoculars and are responsible for their keen eyesight. Bold jumpers usually rely on these eyes when feeding.

Bold jumping spiders are hunters, so they don’t spin webs to catch their victims. They stalk or ambush their victims after sighting them and inject them with the toxin in their fangs.

You’ll find usually find bold jumping spiders outdoors. In forest areas, they are common on the ground and tree barks, while they favor vertical surfaces like fence posts and walls in residential areas. They sometimes stray indoors in search of food.

You can identify bold jumpers by their black hairy bodies and the three reddish-orange to white dots on their backs. Their legs also have hairy white bands, and their fangs are metallic green.

7. Long-bodied Cellar Spider

Long-bodied Cellar Spider (Pholcus phalangioides) on a web in front of a white wall in Clackamas, Oregon, USA
Long-bodied Cellar Spider (Pholcus phalangioides) on a web in front of a white wall in Clackamas, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Pholcidae
  • Scientific Name: Pholcus phalangioides
  • Other Names: Daddy Longlegs, Cellar Spider, Daddy Longlegger, Carpenter Spider, House Spider, Granddaddy Longlegs, Vibrating Spider, Skull Spider
  • Adult Size: Up to 0.4 inches
  • Lifespan: 2 years
  • Average Price Range: N/A

The long-bodied cellar spider is a tiny brown or tan arachnid with long legs. Its legs are mottled and often up to six times its body length, which is why it’s also called a daddy longlegs spider. However, this species isn’t the first daddy longlegs spider.

Daddy longlegs originally referred to harvestmen, a group of spider-like arachnids from the order Opiliones. People began to call long-bodied cellar spiders daddy longlegs by mistake, but the name stuck because it made sense given cellar spiders’ long legs.

You’ll usually find long-bodied cellar spiders indoors. They spin silk webs in cellars, ceiling corners, window sills, and the bends of furniture and other items that haven’t moved in a while.

Long-bodied cellar spiders use their webs to catch insects and other tiny arthropods to eat. But since they have poor eyesight, they rely on the vibrations of their web strands to locate prey caught in their webs. They then go over to sting their victims.

When threatened, these arachnids vigorously shake their webs to dissuade prey. This action also causes the spider to become blurry when viewed through the vibrating web strands, preventing predators from accurately locating them.

If shaking the webs doesn’t faze an intruder, long-bodied cellar spiders abandon their webs and run away. They return after the threat has gone.

Though you’ll often hear people tout cellar spiders as one of the most venomous spider species in the world, these arachnids are harmless. Their venom is too weak to trigger any serious reactions in humans.

8. Banded Garden Spider

Banded Garden Spider (Argiope trifasciata) on a wooden fence on Sauvie Island, Oregon, USA
Banded Garden Spider (Argiope trifasciata) on a wooden fence on Sauvie Island, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Araneidae
  • Scientific Name: Argiope trifasciata
  • Other Names: Orb-weaver Spider, Yellow Garden Spider
  • Adult Size: 0.59 to 0.98 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 year
  • Average Price Range: N/A

The banded garden spider is a close relative of the yellow garden spider, but it is less stunningly colored.

This spider has a long, wide abdomen with bands of many colors running from side to side, hence its name. In most variants, the bands are white, yellow, brown, and orange.

Banded garden spiders also have long spiny legs with alternating white and brown or brown and yellow bands. The carapace of this species is typically white.

You’ll find banded garden spiders in tallgrass prairies, forests, woodlands, and gardens. They spin large concentric webs and sit upside-down in the center, waiting for insects to get stuck in their webs. When insects get stuck, the spiders hurry over to attack.

These arachnids are beneficial to have around because their diet makes them efficient natural pest controls. Sadly, not everyone appreciates their importance. Many people remove banded garden spiders from their gardens after discovering them.

Banded garden spiders rarely bite people and avoid close contact with humans. Even if one were to bite you, the venom these spiders produce is not medically significant.

You’ll probably experience mild to moderate pain and swelling, but nothing serious.

9. Cross Orbweaver

Cross Orbweaver (Araneus diadematus) chilling on a leaf in the sun in Westport, Oregon, USA
Cross Orbweaver (Araneus diadematus) chilling on a leaf in the sun in Westport, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Araneidae
  • Scientific Name: Araneus diadematus
  • Other Names: Crowned Orb-weaver, Orangie, Cross Spider, European Garden Spider, Diadem Spider, House Spider, Pumpkin Spider
  • Adult Size: 0.22 to 0.79 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 year
  • Average Price Range: N/A

The cross orb-weaver builds large concentric webs with radial threads that run towards the center.

Like other orb-weavers, this species relies on its web for food. You’ll usually find it sitting upside-down on its web’s center, waiting for prey to come by.

This spider has various colors, but most variants are brown with spiny banded legs. The abdomen is massive and has a broad dark brown pattern with wavy edges running down the center.

Cross orb-weavers are named after the light brown markings that form a cross-like pattern in the middle of the broader dark pattern on their backs.

These arachnids are common in areas with plenty of vegetation, such as woodlands, prairies, shrublands, and forests. However, most sightings occur in gardens around residential areas.

Originally native to Europe, this species has become widespread in North America. Though it feeds on arthropods, the cross orb-weaver doesn’t pose any undue threat, both to native spider species and to humans.

In gardens, it plays a beneficial role in controlling unwanted pests that might destroy healthy plants. When threatened in its web, the spider’s first instinct is to shake the web vigorously to dissuade intruders. It drops down and runs if this tactic fails.

Like many spiders in Oregon, female cross orb-weavers are large than males. Males also have shorter lifespans and are sometimes consumed by females after mating.

10. Zebra Jumping Spider

Zebra Jumpin Spider (Salticus scenicus) on wood in Coos Bay, Oregon, USA
Zebra Jumpin Spider (Salticus scenicus) on wood in Coos Bay, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Salticidae
  • Scientific Name: Salticus scenicus
  • Other Names: Zebra Jumping Spider
  • Adult Size: Up to 0.25 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 year
  • Average Price Range: N/A

The zebra jumping spider is a black critter with patches of white hair crisscrossing its small body. This color mix makes the body pattern resemble that of zebras, the animals this species is named after.

Like other jumpers, this species is a skilled jumper with keen eyesight. It can leap several times its height using nothing but the pressure in its legs and silk draglines to steady itself in the air.

This species also doesn’t spin silk webs to catch prey. Instead, it relies on its agility and sharp vision to ambush its victims. It quickly hops on its targets after spotting them and injects them with venom.

While the zebra jumping spider’s venom is effective at immobilizing its victims, it is harmless to humans. In addition, the spider doesn’t even bite people unprovoked. It’s completely safe to handle.

You’ll find zebra jumping spiders in residential areas sitting on walls and window panes or jumping about restlessly. They sometimes wander indoors, but most individuals prefer the outdoors when weather conditions are optimal.

Though zebra jumping spiders don’t build conventional silk webs, they spin small silk nests for themselves. Females also spin silk cocoons to wrap their eggs in after laying them.

The spiders guard their eggs in their nest until spiderlings emerge.

11. Mouse Spider

Mouse Spider (Scotophaeus blackwalli) on a woody surface in Portland, Oregon, USA
Mouse Spider (Scotophaeus blackwalli) on a woody surface in Portland, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Gnaphosidae
  • Scientific Name: Scotophaeus blackwalli
  • Other Names: Mouse Spider, Ground Spider
  • Adult Size: Up to 0.5 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 to 2 years
  • Average Price Range: N/A

The mouse spider is a thick-haired arachnid with black, velvety hair covering its abdomen.

The spider’s name comes from the resemblance of this hair to the one on mice. Other than this, the rest of the species’ body is reddish-brown.

Although they bear the same name, you shouldn’t confuse the mouse spider with the Australian mouse spider. The Australian or red-headed mouse spider is a mygalomorph spider, while this species isn’t.

Mouse spiders are relatives of parson spiders. If you’re familiar with parson spiders, you’ll notice similarities in how parson and mouse spiders move. Mouse spiders often run in a zig-zag, start-and-stop fashion similar to mice.

These arachnids are fast hunters skilled at tracking down prey and evading predators. Unlike most web-building species, mouse spiders prefer seizing their prey directly. So they don’t spin typical webs.

You’ll find mouse spiders indoors and outdoors. They are nocturnal, and their secretive nature can make them go undetected for a long time when they share the same space with you.

Mouse spiders are harmless critters, so there’s no need to panic if you discover one in your home. They don’t bite people unprovoked, except as a last resort when threatened and prevented from escaping.

12. Common House Spider

Common House Spider (Parasteatoda tepidariorum) walking on wood in Portland, Oregon, USA
Common House Spider (Parasteatoda tepidariorum) walking on wood in Portland, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Theridiidae
  • Scientific Name: Parasteatoda tepidariorum
  • Other Names: American House Spider
  • Adult Size: 0.15 to 0.24 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 year
  • Average Price Range: N/A

The common house spider is a distant relative of black widows.

It has a similar venom to its deadly cousins, but its toxin is much less potent. Although bites might be painful, they don’t trigger any serious reactions. Besides, bites are uncommon.

This species is widespread in the United States, which is why it’s called the common or American house spider. You’ll find it living in ceiling corners, garages, cellars, window sills, and secluded parts of many people’s homes.

Like its relatives, the common house spider is a cobweb-builder. After spinning its sticky cobweb, the spider often sits in its silky mess, waiting for unlucky insects to wander into it. It hurries over to deliver a lethal bite to any insect trapped in its cobweb.

Though common house spiders usually live alone in their webs, it’s common to find several webs together in the same place. The individual webs are often only a few inches apart but may look like one singular nest viewed from a distance.

This species is brown with a large bulbous abdomen. Unlike widows, its belly isn’t smooth and glossy. Instead, its belly is covered in tiny dark stipples and short hairs.

13. Triangulate Combfoot

Triangulate Combfoot (Steatoda triangulosa) walking on a wooden surface in Roseburg, Oregon, USA
Triangulate Combfoot (Steatoda triangulosa) walking on a wooden surface in Roseburg, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Theridiidae
  • Scientific Name: Steatoda triangulosa
  • Other Names: Triangulate Cobweb Spider, Triangulate Bug Spider
  • Adult Size: Up to 0.25 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 to 3 years
  • Average Price Range: N/A

Triangulate comb-foots are also black widow relatives.

This species is brown with a fine, bulbous abdomen and long legs that end in comb-like structures. Though this species is tagged as a comb-footed spider, the feature isn’t unique to it. All cobweb spiders, including widows, have comb feet.

The triangulate in this arachnid’s name comes from the pattern on its brown abdomen. Look closely, and you’ll notice several pairs of wavy dark brown lines running down the belly. The spaces between the wavy dark lines are light brown and triangle-shaped.

Despite its relationship to widows, the triangulate comb-foot is a harmless spider. It rarely bites people. Although it might trigger mild reactions like pain and redness when provoked to bite, you won’t experience any serious symptoms.

You’ll encounter triangulate comb-foots indoors and outdoors. Indoors, they live in corners, cellars, basements, garages, and dark, damp places with minimal human contact.

These critters spin tangled cobwebs to catch insect prey. The spiders rush towards insects and other arthropods that trespass into their webs to inject venom before eating. If you can get used to the webs, you’ll find their insect-eating habit useful in controlling pests.

As is typical of spiders in their family, female triangulate comb-foots are larger than males and live much longer lives.

14. Giant House Spider

Giant House Spider (Eratigena duellica) on sand in Win Bay, Oregon, USA
Giant House Spider (Eratigena duellica) on sand in Win Bay, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Agelenidae
  • Scientific Name: Eratigena duellica
  • Other Names: Drain Spider, Greater European House Spider, European House Spider
  • Adult Size: 0.47 to 0.71 inches
  • Lifespan: 2 to 3 years
  • Average Price Range: N/A

Giant house spiders aren’t closely related to common house spiders, but both species share some similar features.

These features include their brown skin color and stippled abdomen. Otherwise, the giant house spider resembles its true relatives—hobo spiders.

The carapace of this arachnid is flattened with a prominent ridge in the middle. It also has a dark stripe running down either side of its carapace.

Giant house spiders are incredibly fast runners, covering distances of 50 centimeters per second. These fascinating critters even held the Guinness world record for fastest spider for a while before sun spiders displaced them.

Like their hobo spider relatives, giant house spiders were originally native to Europe. Since their introduction to North America, these arachnids have spread to become established in several US states.

Giant house spiders weave funnel-like webs to catch prey, especially small insects and arthropods. Like most web-building spiders in Oregon, these arachnids are functionally blind. Instead of sight, they rely on vibrations on their web strands to detect prey.

Giant house spiders are common indoors. That’s why they are called house spiders. However, you might also encounter them outdoors among vegetation in tallgrass prairies and forests.

Despite their size and intimidating appearance, these arachnids are harmless to human beings.

15. Hobo Spider

Hobo Spider (Eratigena agrestis) in dark dirt in Multnomah County, Oregon, USA
Hobo Spider (Eratigena agrestis) in dark dirt in Multnomah County, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Agelenidae
  • Scientific Name: Eratigena agrestis
  • Other Names: Funnel Weavers, Sheet Web Spiders, Funnel Web Spiders, Ground Spiders
  • Adult Size: Up to 0.6 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 year
  • Average Price Range: N/A

The hobo spider is hard to distinguish from the giant house spider without professional help. This arachnid is brown or beige with dark spots on its abdomen and dark spotty stripes running down the sides of its carapace.

You’ll find hobo spiders indoors and outdoors. There’s a common misconception that these spiders are dangerous, which caused them to get listed as a medically significant species at one time. However, there’s no evidence that the spiders are especially harmful, so they’ve been delisted.

Hobo spiders rarely bite people unprovoked, but they can be quite aggressive when threatened. You’ll likely experience mild pain and swelling if one bites you, but these symptoms fade on their own.

Like giant house spiders, these arachnids are funnel weavers with poor eyesight. They feed on various insects and arthropods that get caught in their funnel-shaped webs.

Since they can’t see clearly, they use vibratory signals to detect prey in their webs.

16. Goldenrod Crab Spider

Goldenrod Crab Spider (Misumena vatia) on purple flowers at Lincoln City Yard, Oregon, USA
Goldenrod Crab Spider (Misumena vatia) on purple flowers at Lincoln City Yard, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Thomisidae
  • Scientific Name: Misumena vatia
  • Other Names: Smooth Flower Crab Spider, Red-spotted Crab Spider, Flower Spider, Flower Crab Spider
  • Adult Size: 0.125 to 0.75 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 year
  • Average Price Range: N/A

Goldenrod crab spiders spend most of their time in forests, among flowers and plants. While males often wander from place to place, females spend most of their life on a flowerhead without leaving it.

These arachnids come in various colors, but most range from near-white to yellow. They may or may not bear reddish or orange stripes at the sides of their abdomen. Unlike most spiders in Oregon, goldenrod crab spiders can change their color to match their surroundings.

Although they are limited to switching between white and yellow, this range is enough, considering they live on similarly-colored flowerheads. Besides, most of their victims have limited eyesight and can’t differentiate between many colors.

Goldenrod crab spiders are skilled hunters that don’t spin webs to trap prey. Instead, they seize their victims with their limbs before injecting them with venom. Females often conceal themselves from pollinating insects before pouncing on them. Males are more likely to chase down their victims.

These arachnids are called crab spiders because they resemble crabs, both physically and behavior-wise. Their abdomen is often wider at the rear and slimmer where it joins the cephalothorax. Like crabs, their first two leg pairs are curved and larger than the rest.

Goldenrod crab spiders often walk around with these two pairs held open the way crabs do. In addition, they can walk in any direction without turning first, just like crabs.

Although these beautiful spiders don’t spin typical webs, females wrap their eggs in silk cocoons after laying them. The spiders have short lifespans and don’t survive long after their eggs hatch.

17. Common Candy-striped Spider

Common Candy-striped Spider (Enoplognatha ovata) in its web in stems in Portland, Oregon, USA
Common Candy-striped Spider (Enoplognatha ovata) in its web in stems in Portland, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner to Intermediate
  • Family: Theridiidae
  • Scientific Name: Enoplognatha ovata
  • Other Names: Candy-striped Spider
  • Adult Size: 0.25 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 to 3 years
  • Average Price Range: N/A

The common candy-striped spider has a belly that’s colored like candy, hence its name. It’s a member of the cobweb family (same as black widows). But unlike other members you’re used to, this species is brightly colored.

Common candy-striped spiders are usually cream to pale green or yellow, with a bulbous or pea-shaped abdomen. There are three forms of this spider in the US, each with a slightly different pattern on its back.

The redimita morph is the most common form in the United States, and it has two reddish stripes running down its abdomen. Tiny black or red dots pepper the space between the two reddish stripes.

In the ovata morph, there is no visible space between the two reddish stripes. So there’s just one broad red stripe on the spider’s back. The lineata morph lacks stripes and has only red or black spots on its back.

You’re more likely to encounter candy-striped spiders outdoors than indoors. They favor gardens and areas rich with vegetation, so they are also common among plants in shrublands or grasses in prairies.

Although these critters aren’t as venomous as their black widow relatives, their bites can hurt and present with redness and swelling. Fortunately, the venom they produce is not medically significant.

These spiders spin thin, sticky cobwebs to catch prey and sit in their tangled mess, waiting for insects and other arthropods to wander in. Once their cobweb traps an insect, the spiders rush down to kill it with their venom.

18. Gray Cross Spider

Grey Cross Spider (Larinioides sericatus) on a concrete railing in Portland, Oregon, USA
Grey Cross Spider (Larinioides sericatus) on a concrete railing in Portland, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Araneidae
  • Scientific Name: Larinioides sericatus
  • Other Names: Bridge Orb-weaver, Bridge Spider
  • Adult Size: 0.31 to 0.55 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 year
  • Average Price Range: N/A

The gray cross spider is a gray arachnid with some brown variants. It’s closely related to the furrow orb-weaver. However, this species has a cross-like pattern on its back that helps tell both species apart.

Like other orb-weavers in Oregon, the gray cross spider spins orb-shaped webs to catch prey. It often hides in a retreat at the edges of its web during the day to avoid predators. At night, the spider sits in the center and feeds on insects caught in its web strands.

You’ll usually find this species’ webs around well-lit bridges and other metallic structures close to water sources, which is why it’s also called a bridge orb-weaver. It’s also common around light sources in residential areas.

This spider’s association with light and water sources is likely because these areas usually host many insects, giving the spiders plenty to eat. Competition around such hotspots is often fierce among gray cross spiders looking for the best place to anchor their webs.

You’ll usually find many of these spiders living in webs close to each other, despite not being social. Young spiders quickly strike out on their own and build webs to catch prey for themselves.

Gray cross spiders are harmless arachnids. They rarely, if ever, bite people. Even if one were to bite you, you’re unlikely to experience serious symptoms beyond mild pain and redness.

19. Six-spotted Orbweaver

Six-spotted Orbweaver (Araniella displicata) walking on a leaf at Powell Butte Nature Park, Oregon, USA
Six-spotted Orbweaver (Araniella displicata) walking on a leaf at Powell Butte Nature Park, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Araneidae
  • Scientific Name: Araniella displicata
  • Other Names: Orb-weaver
  • Adult Size: 0.16 to 0.31 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 to 2 years
  • Average Price Range: N/A

The six-spotted orb-weaver comes in various colors. You’ll come across variants with white, yellow, and rusty brown or reddish bellies in Oregon. The carapace and legs, however, are usually light brown to orange.

This spider has around six to eight spots dotting the top of its abdomen, which is where its name comes from. The spots are arranged in three or four pairs that run the length of the spider’s abdomen.

Although it’s common to find orb-weavers living in webs several times their body size, this species restricts itself to relatively small webs. Its webs are often only three to four inches wide and anchored to leaves.

The web of this spider is usually horizontal because it’s anchored to leaves, but you may also find webs that slant vertically. The spider sits in the middle of its orb-shaped net, waiting for insects running over leaf surfaces to mistakenly run into it.

Six-spotted orb-weavers have bad eyesight, so they rely on vibratory signals from their web strands to locate their victims. Once they do, the spiders attack and inject them with venom.

These arachnids are pretty tiny, so it’s easy to mistake them for the spiderlings of larger spiders. They don’t bite people, and their venom is too weak to cause any serious reactions in humans.

20. Silver-sided Sector Spider

Silver-sided Sector Spider (Zygiella x-notata) hanging from long leaves in Portland, Oregon, USA
Silver-sided Sector Spider (Zygiella x-notata) hanging from long leaves in Portland, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Araneidae
  • Scientific Name: Zygiella x-notata
  • Other Names: Missing Sector Orb-weaver, Winter Spider
  • Adult Size: 0.16 to 0.43 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 to 2 years
  • Average Price Range: N/A

The silver-sided sector spider is originally native to Europe. However, it has established sizable populations in many coastal states in the US since its introduction to North America.

This species is common in human-dominated areas. While you’ll find many silver-sided sector spiders in gardens and shrublands, most members of this species build their webs near walls, window frames, and other building structures.

It’s easy to tell a silver-sided sector spider lives nearby just from looking at the shape of the spider’s web. That’s because its webs are unlike those of other orb-weavers in Oregon.

Although it spins orb-shaped webs, one sector is always missing from its web. That’s why the species’ other name is “missing sector orb-weaver.”

Silver-sided sector spiders are solitary arachnids, but you’ll usually find many of them in close quarters. This proximity is often because the spiders are forced to share the same space if they want good anchors for their webs.

This spider’s other name, “winter spider,” comes from its all-year-round activity. Unlike most orb-weavers that die off or become scarce in winter, silver-sided sector spider sightings are fairly common in winter seasons.

Males stop building webs for themselves shortly after reaching sexual maturity and seek out females instead. Most males die off shortly after mating. However, females live on. They lay their eggs in silk sacs from which spiderlings emerge after a while.

Silver-sided sector spiders are brown, and females have a characteristic leaf-shaped pattern on their abdomen. The brown abdomen also has a silver hue because it’s peppered with several tiny silvery markings.

Like other orb-weavers, this species depends on its webs to catch prey. Females hide in a retreat connected to the web’s center by a signal thread.

This thread vibrates and alerts females when the web catches prey.

21. Nordmann’s Orbweaver

Nordmann's Orbweaver (Araneus nordmanni) hanging from its web in Marcola, Oregon, USA
Nordmann’s Orbweaver (Araneus nordmanni) hanging from its web in Marcola, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Araneidae
  • Scientific Name: Araneus nordmanni
  • Other Names: Missing Sector Orb-weaver, Winter Spider
  • Adult Size: 0.28 to 0.75 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 to 2 years
  • Average Price Range: N/A

Nordmann’s orb-weaver is related to the giant lichen orb-weaver and the cross orb-weaver. The middle of the abdomen bears the same broad pattern with serrated edges seen in cross spiders, but it doesn’t have cross-like markings.

Though this spider’s color slightly varies among individuals, most variants have a brown abdomen speckled with white or grayish markings. The legs are spiny with light and dark bands, and the carapace is covered in white to brown or orange hair.

This species has a hump on either side of its back. However, its hump is not as pronounced as some other spiders in its genus, such as cat-faced orb-weavers.

You’ll find Nordmann’s orb-weaver outdoors in gardens, woodlands, and tallgrass prairies. It builds large concentric webs to trap insect prey and sits on it, waiting for insects to fly into its sticky strands.

Insects caught in the web trigger vibratory signals immediately after touching the strands. The spider picks up these signals and uses them to locate its victim before biting it. Afterward, the spider drags its catch to the web’s center for consumption.

Nordmann’s orb-weaver is a harmless arachnid, so there’s no reason to panic if you encounter one. This species is timid around people and runs when approached instead of attacking.

22. Cat-faced Orbweaver

Cat-faced Orbweaver (Araneus gemmoides) hanging on a thread in front of a white wall in Baker County, Oregon, USA
Cat-faced Orbweaver (Araneus gemmoides) hanging on a thread in front of a white wall in Baker County, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Araneidae
  • Scientific Name: Araneus gemmoides
  • Other Names: Jewel Spider, Cat-faced orb-weaver
  • Adult Size: 0.2 to 1 inch
  • Lifespan: 1 year
  • Average Price Range: N/A

The cat-faced orb-weaver is a peculiar spider with a massive hairy abdomen and spiny legs.

It occurs in various colors, from brown and orange to yellow or near-white. Like many of its close relatives, the top of its abdomen has a massive hump on either side.

This spider’s angular hump, coupled with its hairiness and the dark puncture-like markings on its belly, makes its body resemble a cat’s face. It’s also called a jeweled spider because the sharp angles of its humps give its belly a jewel-like shape.

Depending on your general disposition toward spiders, you may find this spider’s appearance cute or disturbing. Even if you find it disturbing, it’s important to know that the spider is harmless. It helps regulate the ecosystem by controlling insect populations.

Like other orb-weavers, the cat-faced orb-weaver has poor eyesight and depends on its web for food. It spins large, orb-shaped webs and sits on it, waiting for insects to fly into its web. It hurries over to immobilize insects its web catches with venom before eating.

You’ll find this spider in grassy fields, tallgrass prairies, woodlands, and gardens. It’s also common around man-made structures, so you’ll find its web anchored to fences, porches, and eaves.

23. Gray House Spider

Grey House Spider (Badumna longinqua) on wood in web in Clatsop County, Oregon, USA
Grey House Spider (Badumna longinqua) on wood in web in Clatsop County, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Desidae
  • Scientific Name: Badumna longinqua
  • Other Names: Black House Spider, Window Spider
  • Adult Size: 0.45 to 0.6 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 to 2 years
  • Average Price Range: N/A

Gray house spiders are originally native to Australia.

But unlike many Australian spiders famed for being dangerous, these arachnids are harmless to humans. They build their webs around crevices in people’s homes and can spend all their life on the same web.

Though they live close to people, they avoid human contact and are very shy arachnids. Due to their reclusive nature, you could live with a few of these spiders for a long time before detecting their presence in your home.

You can identify gray house spiders by their black and gray bodies. The carapace is black with a few gray hairs, while the abdomen is black and covered in gray hairs of varying shades.

The legs of gray house spiders are short compared to most web-building spiders. In addition, their legs are banded with alternating black and hairy gray regions.

Like many web-building arachnids, this species relies on its web for food. The webs it builds are disorganized lace-like structures containing a funnel that extends into its retreat.

This species is nocturnal, so it rests most of the day in its retreat. It emerges at night to sit on its web, where it feeds on insects and other small arthropods stuck on its sticky strands.

24. Bronze Jumping Spider

Bronze Jumping Spider (Eris militaris) on a leaf in Eugene, Oregon, USA
Bronze Jumping Spider (Eris militaris) on a leaf in Eugene, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Salticidae
  • Scientific Name: Eris militaris
  • Other Names: Bronze Lake Jumping Spider, Bronze Jumper, Bronze Lake Jumper
  • Adult Size: 0.19 to 0.35 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 year
  • Average Price Range: N/A

The bronze jumping spider is a bronze-brown arachnid with a light brown stripe on either side of its carapace. Another light brown stripe curves around the top of its abdomen.

You’ll encounter bronze jumping spiders in a wide range of habitats. Although they sometimes wander indoors, most live outdoors. They are common on tree trunks, around leaf litter, and under tree bark.

These critters have two enlarged eyes that help them see clearly. They leverage their quality vision when hunting prey, which is one reason they don’t use webs to trap prey. Instead, they chase down their victims and pounce on them.

Like all jumping spiders, bronze jumpers can leap many times their height. They do this by regulating the blood pressure in their legs. They also spin silk safety lines to keep them steady and protect them from injury if a jump goes awry.

Though these spiders don’t build conventional webs, they spin small silk nests for shelter. Females also spin protective silk cocoons for their eggs. They guard these eggs dutifully until spiderlings emerge from them.

25. Conical Trashline Orbweaver

Conical Trashline Orbweaver (Cyclosa conica) on its web in Wallowa County, Oregon, USA
Conical Trashline Orbweaver (Cyclosa conica) on its web in Wallowa County, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Araneidae
  • Scientific Name: Cyclosa conica
  • Other Names: Trashline Orb-weaver
  • Adult Size: 0.13 to 0.25 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 to 2 years
  • Average Price Range: N/A

The conical trashline orb-weaver aims to intimidate. This fascinating arachnid builds orb-like webs similar to other orb-weavers. But unlike its mates, this species hangs the body parts of its previous victims and some debris in a straight line on its web.

These body parts and debris help deter potential predators. They also make the spider more difficult to spot among the debris, concealing it from both potential predators and prey.

Conical trashline orb-weavers depend on their webs for food, but they have poor eyesight. To compensate for this lack, they use vibration sensors in their legs to locate prey caught in their webs before running over to deliver a lethal bite.

If the source of vibratory signals on their web turns out to be a predator, the spiders drop down and run away. Sometimes, these critters play dead until the threat leaves instead of running.

You’ll find conical trashline orb-weavers in many parts of Oregon, from urban areas with artificial buildings to forests and tallgrass prairies.

These arachnids are brown or black and have large bellies that end in a conical tubercle, which is why there’s “conical” in their name. The rest of the abdomen is usually mottled with several shades of brown.

26. Barn Funnel Weaver

Barn Funnel Weaver (Tegenaria domestica) on wood at Moon Mountain City Park, Oregon, USA
Barn Funnel Weaver (Tegenaria domestica) on wood at Moon Mountain City Park, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Araneidae
  • Scientific Name: Tegenaria domestica
  • Other Names: Drain Spider, Common House Spider, Domestic House Spider
  • Adult Size: 0.24 to 0.45 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 to 7 years
  • Average Price Range: N/A

The barn funnel weaver is a common house spider in Europe, where the species is originally from.

This arachnid is dark brown or reddish-brown, with black markings running down the sides of its carapace and abdomen. The abdomen also has dark chevron markings in the middle.

You may encounter this spider indoors or outdoors. When indoors, it often hides in crevices and secluded areas. It avoids human contact and typically runs when threatened, so bites are rare.

It’s called a barn funnel weaver and drain spider because people often find it in their barns and bathtub or kitchen sink drains. Though their presence in drains suggests that barn funnel weavers live in drains, they don’t. They live elsewhere and usually only get stuck in drains while searching for water and moisture.

Outdoors, you’ll find the barn funnel weaver in grassy fields, gardens, and forests. It often hides in holes and burrows on the ground or among plants and rotting logs.

The barn funnel weaver spins funnel webs that extend to its retreat, where it waits at the end of the funnel for prey. When prey wanders into its web, vibratory signals travel via the strands to alert the spider. The spider then hurries over to immobilize its victim.

This spider is a relative of the hobo spider and giant house spider, so you’ll notice plenty of physical similarities among the different species.

27. Western Lynx Spider

Western Lynx Spider (Oxyopes scalaris) walking on wood in Springfield, Oregon, USA
Western Lynx Spider (Oxyopes scalaris) walking on wood in Springfield, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Oxyopidae
  • Scientific Name: Oxyopes scalaris
  • Other Names: Lynx Spider
  • Adult Size: 0.47 to 0.63 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 year
  • Average Price Range: N/A

Western lynx spiders are agile hunters with good eyesight, although not as keen as jumping spiders’. Like jumping spiders, these spiders can perform impressive leaps and employ silk draglines when jumping from place to place.

They are called lynx spiders because of the cat-like way they pounce on their prey when attacking. These spiders don’t use webs to trap their victims, instead preferring to stalk prey before attacking.

Though the western lynx spider doesn’t spin silk webs to catch prey, it spins silk shelters for itself to rest in when inactive. Females also tend to spin silk cocoons around their eggs for protection.

This species is dark brown with lighter regions in the middle of its back. Like other lynx spiders, its chelicerae are noticeably large, and its legs bear long spines. Six of this spider’s eight eyes also point forward, while the last pair is directed upwards.

Western lynx spiders are not aggressive towards humans, so bites are rare. The spiders typically run when threatened and will only get defensive when protecting their eggs or prevented from escaping.

Thankfully, the venom they produce is harmless to humans.

28. Western Parson Spider

Western Parson Spider (Herpyllus propinquus) on a white wall in Eugene, Oregon, USA
Western Parson Spider (Herpyllus propinquus) on a white wall in Eugene, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Gnaphosidae
  • Scientific Name: Herpyllus propinquus
  • Other Names: Stealthy Ground Spider, Ground Spider
  • Adult Size: 0.3 to 0.8 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 to 2 years
  • Average Price Range: N/A

The western parson spider is the sibling of the more widely known eastern parson spider. The carapace and legs are brown, while the hairy abdomen is black or gray. Like its sibling, it has a white pattern running along the center of its carapace and abdomen.

This spider’s name comes from the white pattern on its back. That’s because the pattern resembles the neckband Catholic clergymen used to wear in the past. Parson is another name for a religious minister or clergy member.

Western parson spiders are skilled hunters that don’t require webs to catch their victims. Instead, these arachnids track down and ambush prey. They pounce on their victims and immobilize them before eating.

These critters aren’t aggressive towards people unprovoked, but they can be pretty feral when backed into a corner. They will bite if you don’t let them go. And while their venom isn’t medically significant, bites can be very painful.

You’ll often come across western parson spiders outdoors. These arachnids are nocturnal, so they spend most of the day hiding under rocks, wood, leaf litter, and other debris. Hunting usually takes place at night.

Western parson spiders also live indoors, especially during colder seasons. They can go undetected for long periods because they are mostly active at night.

Although these spiders don’t spin webs to catch prey, females spin silk sacs around their eggs for protection. These spiders are fiercely protective of their eggs.

29. Brilliant Jumping Spider

Brilliant Jumping Spider (Phidippus clarus) on a white flower in Roseburg, Oregon, USA
Brilliant Jumping Spider (Phidippus clarus) on a white flower in Roseburg, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Salticidae
  • Scientific Name: Phidippus clarus
  • Other Names: Red and Black Jumping Spider, Brilliant Jumper
  • Adult Size: 0.19 to 0.25 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 to 3 years
  • Average Price Range: N/A

The brilliant jumping spider is a sexually dimorphic species with black males and gray to light brown females. While females have orange markings on their carapace, most males don’t.

Both sexes have a whitish band around the top of their abdomen and a reddish stripe on either side of their back. The space between these reddish-orange stripes is black and bears whitish spots arranged in about three pairs.

You’ll find the brilliant jumping spider in many parts of Oregon. This spider sometimes wanders indoors, but it’s more common outdoors. It lives everywhere, from grassy fields and parks to forests.

Like most jumping spiders, this species likes walking on vertical surfaces and can make impressive jumps. This spider’s agility is largely due to its ability to regulate the blood pressure in its back legs before forcefully extending them.

Brilliant jumping spiders don’t spin webs to catch prey, but they spin silk nests to rest in while inactive. They also spin silk safety lines to steady themselves while jumping and to prevent accidents.

Females brilliant jumpers, like most spiders in Oregon, lay their eggs in silk sacs for protection. These spiders place their eggs in their nest and guard them fiercely until spiderlings emerge from the eggs.

Brilliant jumpers are skilled hunters with excellent eyesight. Instead of trapping prey in webs, these spiders relish the chase.

They often ambush their victims and pounce on them when close enough. They immobilize their victims with venom before eating.

30. Pacific Foldingdoor Spider

Pacific Foldingdoor Spider (Antrodiaetus pacificus) on a wet piece of wood in Gresham, Oregon, USA
Pacific Foldingdoor Spider (Antrodiaetus pacificus) on a wet piece of wood in Gresham, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Antrodiaetidae
  • Scientific Name: Antrodiaetus pacificus
  • Other Names: Pacific Foldingdoor Spider, Trapdoor Spider
  • Adult Size: 0.43 to 0.52 inches
  • Lifespan: 10 to 20 years
  • Average Price Range: N/A

The Pacific folding trapdoor spider lives in vertical tunnels or burrows in the ground. It lines its burrows with silk and seals the entrance with a folding trapdoor made out of silk and debris.

Like most trapdoor spiders, this species relies on its burrow for food. It is nocturnal, so it spends most of the day inside its burrow.

At night, it opens the trapdoor slightly and ambushes prey walking near the entrance. It can detect small animals from the ground vibrations their movements cause while walking.

You’ll rarely encounter this spider outside its tunnel, except when searching for a mate or when forced to vacate its burrow by external factors like flooding. The spider is sensitive to light and will often retreat if you shine a torch at it.

This spider can’t climb very smooth surfaces. That’s because its legs are modified for digging due to its burrowing lifestyle.

The Pacific folding trapdoor spider looks intimidating, but its venom is harmless to humans. It doesn’t bite except when threatened or mishandled. Even then, you’ll only experience mild pain and redness.

Like other mygalomorphs, this species has large fangs and stout legs. The body is usually brown and shiny, while the abdomen is covered in short hair. It’s originally native to the Pacific Islands.

31. Red-backed Jumping Spider

Red-backed Jumping Spider (Phidippus johnsoni) on a rocky surface at Shore Acres State Park, Oregon, USA
Red-backed Jumping Spider (Phidippus johnsoni) on a rocky surface at Shore Acres State Park, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Salticidae
  • Scientific Name: Phidippus johnsoni
  • Other Names: Johnson Jumping Spider, Red, and Black Jumping Spider
  • Adult Size: 0.19 to 0.25 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 to 3 years
  • Average Price Range: N/A

The red-backed jumping spider is a black arachnid with whitish or light brown hairs on its legs. As its name suggests, its abdomen is usually reddish or reddish-orange. However, there are some differences between the sexes.

Males have a completely red back. In females, only the sides are reddish on the back. The space between the red stripes is black, with short white or light brown lines extending inward from the edges of the reddish stripes.

Some female variants also have a white central marking. In addition, a white or light brown line often curves around the reddish marking of the abdomen. Without proper examination, it’s easy to mistake this species for the brilliant jumping spider.

You’ll find the red-backed jumping spider in many parts of Oregon. While you may encounter this arachnid indoors, most sightings are outdoors. It builds silk nests under rocks, wood, and among plants in forests.

This spider’s nest is different from the webs most web-builders spin. It’s only used as a shelter, not for catching prey. When hungry, the red-backed jumping spider prefers ambushing or chasing down its victims before immobilizing them with venom.

The red-backed jumping spider can leap up to five times its own height. It spins silk draglines for balance and depends on its strong back legs to make its leaps.

Female red-backed jumpers lay their eggs in silk cocoons and keep them in nests for protection. They guard their eggs fiercely until the eggs hatch into spiderlings. However, they don’t live much longer after their eggs hatch.

These arachnids are active during the day, and they rest at night. They don’t bite people unprovoked. However, they might sting if threatened or mishandled. Fortunately, their venom is not medically significant.

32. California Flattened Jumping Spider

California Flattened Jumping Spider (Platycryptus californicus) walking on white floor in Sunriver, Oregon, USA
California Flattened Jumping Spider (Platycryptus californicus) walking on white floor in Sunriver, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Salticidae
  • Scientific Name: Platycryptus californicus
  • Other Names: California Flattened Jumper
  • Adult Size: 0.24 to 0.42 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 to 3 years
  • Average Price Range: N/A

California flattened jumping spider is the tan jumping spider’s lesser-known sibling.

Like its sibling, this species is light brown to tan. The sides are grayish, while the middle of its abdomen and carapace has a grayish or brownish leaf-like pattern.

A true hunter, this species does not depend on webs to catch prey. It prefers ambushing insects and small arthropods, seizing them with its legs and injecting them with venom before eating.

It has excellent eyesight and can perform impressive jumps several times its height. Like other jumping spiders, this species leaps by modifying the pressure in its legs. It also spins silk safety lines to assist with these jumps.

California flattened jumping spiders sometimes stray indoors, but most spend their time outdoors. They live in small silken nests, and you’ll often find them under debris or on tree trunks in fields, forests, and woodlands.

Female California flattened jumping spiders spin protective silk sacs to hold their eggs. They place these eggs in their nests and stand guard until the eggs hatch.

Sadly, most females die before their young mature.

33. Long-palped Ant-mimic Sac Spider

Long-palped Ant-mimic Sac Spider (Castianeira longipalpa) in dry leaves in Benton County, Oregon, USA
Long-palped Ant-mimic Sac Spider (Castianeira longipalpa) in dry leaves in Benton County, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Corinnidae
  • Scientific Name: Castianeira longipalpa
  • Other Names: Ant Mimic Spider, Manybanded Ant Mimic Spider
  • Adult Size: 0.19 to 0.39 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 year
  • Average Price Range: N/A

Long-palped ant mimic sac spiders are hunters that don’t spin webs to catch prey.

Although they don’t build typical webs, adults weave silk sacs for shelter when inactive. This sac-like shelter they live in is why they are called sac spiders.

These arachnids feed on various arthropods, but ants are their favorite prey. The spiders have developed some physical and behavioral adaptations to get closer to these insects undetected.

Though these spiders have eight legs like all arachnids, they often walk around on only six of them. They raise their first pair up to imitate the antennae of six-legged insects. These spiders also have long and bulbous bellies that resemble those of true ants.

Fortunately for the spiders, their mimic works. They often get close enough to ants undetected before pouncing on their victims. Since they don’t use webs, they rely on their speed and strength to catch ants near them.

You’ll often find long-palped ant mimic sac spiders outdoors. They situate their nests near anthills and colonies, allowing them to hunt easily.

The body of long-palped ant mimic sac spiders is black, but their abdomen has several whitish or yellowish stripes running across it. The carapace is also covered in yellowish hair.

In addition, the back legs have yellowish-white bands while the second half of the front legs is reddish-brown.

Females lay their eggs in silk sacs. Afterward, they anchor the sacs to rocks and tuck them away for protection.

34. Giant Crab Spider

Giant Crab Spider (Olios giganteus) on a large stick in Santa Cruz County, Arizona, USA
Giant Crab Spider (Olios giganteus) on a large stick in Santa Cruz County, Arizona, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Sparassidae
  • Scientific Name: Olios giganteus
  • Other Names: Crab Spider, Huntsman
  • Adult Size: 0.8 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 to 3 years
  • Average Price Range: N/A

The giant crab spider is a large brown spider with curved, crab-like legs that extend outwards in front of it.

Like crabs, this species can move sideways without turning its body. Its legs are fit for climbing, so it’s common to see it on walls and ceilings.

This species is pretty hairy, and its light brown body gets progressively darker towards the tip of its long legs. One of its most identifying features is the presence of a black Y-shaped marking on the lower half of its back.

Unlike web-building spiders, this species does not spin webs to catch prey. It is a skilled hunter that takes pride in tracking and ambushing its victims. It pounces on them when within reach and sinks its poisonous fangs into their bodies.

The giant crab spider feeds primarily on insects like cockroaches and other small arthropods. It may eat other small invertebrates and vertebrates, including small geckos and lizards.

You may encounter this spider indoors. However, most giant crab spiders live outdoors in forests and woodlands. They hide under rocks and debris, where they rest during the day. Hunting takes place at night.

Giant crab spiders don’t bite unprovoked, but they can be pretty aggressive when threatened. Females will attack and bite potential threats, especially when guarding their egg sacs.

The venom this spider injects is not medically significant. However, the pain from its sting can be excruciating.

You might experience more intense reactions like nausea and headaches, but these go away without treatment.

35. Sierra Dome Spider

Sierra Dome Spider (Neriene litigiosa) hanging in its web somewhere in Douglas County, Oregon, USA
Sierra Dome Spider (Neriene litigiosa) hanging in its web somewhere in Douglas County, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Linyphiidae
  • Scientific Name: Neriene litigiosa
  • Other Names: Sheet-weaver, Dome-web Weaver
  • Adult Size: 0.2 to 0.31 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 year
  • Average Price Range: N/A

The sierra dome spider is a sheet-weaving arachnid with a brown or tea-colored body. Its legs are spiny, and its abdomen is white with central black markings that are most visible at the rear.

Like most members of its family, this tiny spider constructs horizontal webs with a dome-shaped center. You’ll usually find its dome-like web suspended among tree branches in forests, bushes, and shrublands.

The spider hangs upside-down under the dome, waiting for prey to fall or land on the web. When prey lands on the web, the spider stings it while still under. It only comes up to consume its victim after immobilizing it with venom.

Male sierra dome spiders seek out females before the females reach full sexual maturity. Female sierra dome spiders are polyandrous and will often mate with other males after their first partner has left.

In many cases, multiple males fight for the chance to mate with a female. After mating, some males remove parts of the web containing the female’s pheromones to prevent other males from getting attracted by the scent.

36. Eurasian Running Crab Spider

Eurasian Running Crab Spider (Philodromus dispar) on white woven cloth with prey in Lincoln County, Oregon, USA
Eurasian Running Crab Spider (Philodromus dispar) on white woven cloth with prey in Lincoln County, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Philodromidae
  • Scientific Name: Philodromus dispar
  • Other Names: Running Crab Spider
  • Adult Size: Up to 0.75 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 year
  • Average Price Range: N/A

You’ll typically find the Eurasian running crab spider on leaves or among leaf litter on the ground in forests and woodlands. It has a brown body stippled with dark markings that provide it excellent camouflage when on the ground or among dead leaves.

Though it’s called a running crab spider, this species isn’t a true crab spider. But it behaves like one. It curves its first two pairs of legs forward and spreads them out when it walks, similar to how true crab spiders do.

Only on close examination will you notice that, unlike true crab spiders, this species’ two front legs aren’t longer than the rest. Only the second pair is longer than the rest. But in true crab spiders, the first two leg pairs are noticeably longer and larger than others.

The Eurasian running crab spider doesn’t build webs to catch prey. A true hunter, this species relishes the thrill of chasing down its victims and forcefully subduing them with its strength and venom.

Fortunately, the toxin this spider produces is only effective against prey. It’s harmless to humans, and bites rarely occur. In the event of a bite, expect to experience mild pain and discomfort but nothing more.

Although Eurasian running crab spiders don’t build traditional webs, females spin silk sacs to house their eggs. They attach these eggs to leaves and protect them for as long as they can before the eggs hatch into young spiders.

37. Furrow Orbweaver

Furrow Orbweaver (Larinioides cornutus) on a uneven white wall in Portland, Oregon, USA
Furrow Orbweaver (Larinioides cornutus) on an uneven white wall in Portland, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Araneidae
  • Scientific Name: Larinioides cornutus
  • Other Names: Furrow Orb Spider, Furrow Spider, Foliate Spider
  • Adult Size: 0.4 to 0.5 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 Year
  • Average Price Range: N/A

The furrow orb-weaver gets all its common names from the broad dark brown or black pattern on its back. The dark pattern on this spider’s back resembles a leaf with wavy edges, hence its other name, “foliate spider.”

It’s called a furrow orb-weaver because the wavy edges of this leaf-like pattern resemble the furrows left behind after plowing the soil.

This spider’s cephalothorax is reddish-brown, but the carapace is covered in whitish hair. Like many orb-weavers in Oregon, the legs of this species have alternating light and dark bands.

Furrow orb-weavers are common in gardens, forests, and prairies. But they are also common on man-made structures, often anchoring their webs to fences or eaves and porches.

The spiders build concentric webs for catching prey and sit on it, waiting for insects to wander into its silky trap. When prey gets stuck, the spiders rush down to immobilize their victims before eating or wrapping them up for later.

Furrow orb-weavers are harmless spiders that rarely bite people, so there’s no reason to fear them. If you want one to bite you, you’ll have to work pretty hard to force it to do so.

38. Spitting Spider

Common Spitting Spider (Scytodes thoracica) on a leaf in Emilia-Romagna, Italy
Common Spitting Spider (Scytodes thoracica) on a leaf in Emilia-Romagna, Italy. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Scytodidae
  • Scientific Name: Scytodes thoracica
  • Other Names: Spitting Spider
  • Adult Size: 0.15 to 0.25 inches
  • Lifespan: 1.5 to 2 years
  • Average Price Range: N/A

Spitting spiders are peculiar hunters that catch their prey using silk webs, but not the same way web-building spiders do.

These arachnids don’t spin silk webs and sit around waiting for prey to get stuck so they can sting it. They go in search of their victims.

Unlike most spiders in Oregon, these hunters chase down their victims, force them into a tight spot, then shoot toxic silk strands to cover them. The strands spitting spiders shoot have an organized pattern designed to trap their victims while the toxin immobilizes them.

Spitting spiders can “spit” silk in a way impossible for other spiders because they have an extra set of silk glands on their heads. The toxic silk they shoot at prey is released in liquid form but solidifies in the air or in contact with the intended target.

Fortunately, the toxin that these spiders spit is harmless to humans. The spiders themselves are pretty shy around people and don’t attempt to bite unless threatened. But even their bite is harmless.

You can identify silk spiders by their brown to yellow bodies and dome-shaped cephalothorax and abdomen. Dark brown or black markings litter this spider’s body, from the abdomen and cephalothorax to the legs.

You’ll usually find spitting spiders outdoors in forests and woodlands, walking around in search of prey. Though they don’t spin conventional webs, females spin silk sacs to protect their eggs.

39. Bowl and Doily Spider

Bowl-and-doily Spider (Frontinella pyramitela) on its web in Josephine County, Oregon, USA
Bowl-and-doily Spider (Frontinella pyramitela) on its web in Josephine County, Oregon, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Linyphiidae
  • Scientific Name: Frontinella pyramitela
  • Other Names: Sheet-weavers
  • Adult Size: Up to 0.15 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 year
  • Average Price Range: N/A

Bowl and doily spiders get their name from the webs they spin. These tiny arachnids’ webs are composed of two parts: a bowl or upside-down dome-shaped web and a flat doily-like sheet under.

Their webs aren’t sticky. However, they are effective, and the reason for this effectiveness is clever. The spiders anchor their webs to the branches of large trees by a tangled mass of silk. Insects that collide with this mass while flying fall into the bowl.

Bowl and doily spiders often sit at the bottom of the bowl or on the sheet outside the bowl, waiting for insects to fall in. The spiders rush to attack immediately after an insect falls in. If on the sheet, these spiders sting their victim through the web before going in.

You’ll typically find one bowl and doily spider per web, usually a female. However, it’s also possible to see webs occupied by a male and a female bowl and doily spider outside mating seasons.

The arrangement isn’t always romantic. Both sexes sometimes compete fiercely for food in the same nest.

You can identify bowl and doily spiders by their dark brown bodies and the whitish comma-shaped vertical markings on their sides. These whitish markings turn yellowish as they curve under the spider’s body.

Bowl and doily spiders are harmless to humans. They don’t bite people unprovoked, and the toxin they produce isn’t medically significant.

40. Golden Silk Spider

Golden Silk Spider (Trichonephila clavipes) hanging on its web in Charleston County, South Carolina, USA
Golden Silk Spider (Trichonephila clavipes) hanging on its web in Charleston County, South Carolina, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Araneidae
  • Scientific Name: Trichonephila clavipes
  • Other Names: Banana Spider, Golden Silk Orb-weaver, Banana Spider, Calico Spider, Golden Orb-weaver, Giant Golden Orb-weaver
  • Adult Size: 1 to 1.5 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 year
  • Average Price Range: N/A

This species should not be confused with the Brazilian banana spider. Unlike the notorious Brazilian banana spider that derives its name from its tendency to hide in banana bunches and bite people, this species gets its name from the shape of its abdomen.

The banana spider is an orb-weaver with a long belly, causing its body to curve slightly like a banana. It also helps that this spider’s abdomen is usually yellow, like most ripe bananas. However, some variants have orange to reddish-brown abdomens.

Looking closely, you’ll notice several columns of white markings on this spider’s belly. The abdomen is covered in silvery-white hair with a few black spots that take the shape of a skull.

The spider also has long, spindly legs with alternating golden-yellow and reddish-orange or reddish-brown bands. The reddish-brown joints of these legs are wrapped in feathery tufts.

Like other orb-weavers in Oregon, this species spins large silk webs shaped like wheels. It often sits in the middle of this web, hanging upside-down while waiting for prey to come by. It quickly rushes over to immobilize intruders after detecting them.

If the intruder turns out to be a predator the spider can’t take on, it abandons its nest and runs. Banana spiders aren’t aggressive towards people, so bites are rare. They’ll only bite if threatened without room for escape.

An interesting feature of banana spiders is that the silk threads they spin have a golden or yellowish tint. That’s why they are also widely referred to as golden silk orb-weavers or giant golden silk orb-weavers.

Female giant golden silk orb-weavers are among the largest non-tarantula spiders in North America. However, males are tiny. It’s easy to miss males hanging out in a female’s web if you don’t look carefully because of their size.

41. Red-spotted Ant-mimic Spider

Red-spotted Ant-mimic Sac Spider (Castianeira descripta) on a rock in Minnesota, USA
Red-spotted Ant-mimic Sac Spider (Castianeira descripta) on a rock in Minnesota, USA. – Source
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Corinnidae
  • Scientific Name: Castianeira descripta
  • Other Names: Ant Mimic Spider
  • Adult Size: 0.2-0.4 inches
  • Lifespan: 1 year
  • Average Price Range: N/A

Red-spotted ant-mimic spiders resemble ants in appearance and behavior. This mimicry is an adaptation to help the spiders get close enough to ants to attack and feed. However, it also likely helps the spiders avoid predators that specifically target spiders.

Despite having eight legs, these spiders walk around on only six of them. They move with the first pair raised to mimic the antennae of six-legged ants. The spiders’ body is black, and they have long and bulbous ant-like belly with reddish spots.

From a distance, you might mistake these spiders for true ants. It’s only by examining them up close that you see them for what they are. But fortunately for the spiders, most ants aren’t so discerning. The mimicry works like a charm.

Red-spotted ant mimic spiders don’t build webs to catch their victims, relying on their speed and wit instead. But these spiders spin silk sac-shaped shelters for themselves to rest in.

Adults often situate their shelters only a short distance from ant colonies and anthills, giving them proximity to the insects. Though they eat other arthropods, ants are this species’ specialty.

Female red-spotted ant mimic spiders lay their eggs in silk cocoons and find a secure place to anchor the sacs. Although they can be fiercely protective of their egg sacs when threatened, they are harmless spiders.

Frequently Asked Questions

You probably still have questions about spiders in Oregon. Read on to get answers to your most pressing questions.

What do spiders in Oregon eat?

Spiders in Oregon and other parts of the world primarily feed on arthropods. Insects make up the bulk of their diet due to their abundance, but spiders have highly varied diets.

Many spiders eat other spiders, including their species members. You’ll also find many species that feed on other small non-arthropods, including small vertebrates like lizards, slugs, and fish.

Although spiders are primarily carnivorous, it’s common to encounter species that supplement their diet with plant matter like pollen. Such a hybrid diet is more common among juveniles.

Do spiders in Oregon have good eyesight?

Yes and no. Spiders that don’t spin webs to trap prey generally have good eyesight since they need quality vision to locate their victims. Of all the hunters in Oregon, jumping spiders have the best eyesight.

Web-building spiders generally have poor eyesight, which is why they depend on their webs for food. Fortunately, they often have highly developed vibration sensors on their feet to use in detecting prey. Their eyes also serve as effective motion detectors.

Where can I find spiders in Oregon?

You’ll find spiders almost anywhere you look in Oregon. Many species live indoors. Although they often favor undisturbed places tucked away from open view, many also spin their webs in visible places like ceiling corners and window sills.

If you want to see more stunning spiders than those you’re used to, you’ll have to look outdoors. Many beautiful spiders live in residential areas, but there’s much more diversity in forests, prairies, and woodlands.

Are there any poisonous spiders in Oregon?

Yes, virtually every spider in Oregon is venomous. The good news is that this venom is usually harmless. While some species’ bites hurt more than others, you’ll typically be fine without receiving any treatment.

Black widows are the only species that can inflict medically significant bites, so be careful around them. They won’t bite unprovoked, but their bites sometimes require medical attention.

Can a spider bite kill you?

Yes, a spider bite can kill you. However, this outcome is extremely rare, and only a handful of spiders can inflict such powerful bites.

The western black widow is the only spider in Oregon capable of inflicting potentially fatal bites. Thankfully,  this species almost never injects enough venom to cause death. Bites are also rare.

What is the deadliest spider in Oregon?

The western black widow is the deadliest spider in Oregon if we’re talking about the toxicity of its venom. Its neurotoxin is about 15 times more potent than a rattlesnake’s venom.

But while that might scare you, it’s important to know that western black widows rarely bite people. And when they do, they scarcely inject enough venom for that potency to mean much to humans.

They only inject a small dose. Sadly, this dose is sometimes enough to trigger adverse symptoms like pain, swelling, vomiting, muscle stiffness, fever, and profuse sweating, but most people don’t suffer any lasting damage once the symptoms pass.

Still, it’s wise to be wary of these spiders, especially if you’re a child, are elderly, or have a weak immune system. This demographic is the most vulnerable to reactions that could lead to death.

Seek medical attention if you suspect this spider has bitten you.

Are there brown recluses in Oregon?

No. There are no known brown recluse populations in Oregon.

While you might hear about people who know someone who’s been stung by a brown recluse, you’d be hard-pressed to find anyone who has actually seen native brown recluses in the state.

Are there jumping spiders in Oregon?

Yes. There are jumping spiders in Oregon. The state is home to many colorful jumping spider species, from brilliant jumping spiders to bold jumpers.

Are there black widows in Oregon?

Yes. There are black widows in Oregon. However, all the native black widows in Oregon belong to only one species: the western black widow. Oregon is outside the natural range of other black widow species in the US.

Are there tarantulas in Oregon?

No, there are no known tarantula populations in Oregon. Tarantulas you’ll find in the state are often imported from other states.

What you’ll find here are mygalomorph spiders like trapdoor spiders that belong to the same sub-order as tarantulas but aren’t tarantulas. These mygalomorph spiders are sometimes called atypical tarantulas.

Is it legal to own a pet spider in Oregon?

Yes, it is legal to own a pet spider in Oregon. However, the state places limits on some species. For example, cellar spiders are only allowed for educational purposes but not explicitly as pets.

You may choose to keep species you find in your home as pets, but check with the Oregon Department of Agriculture if you’re unclear about any species or plan to import spiders from other states.

How many species of spiders are there in Oregon?

According to the state government, there are at least 500 spider species living in Oregon.

Sadly, most are tiny and scarcely encountered, so you’ll have difficulty finding them. Only a few dozen species are common in the state and properly documented.

What are the most common spiders in Oregon?

Domestic spiders like hobo spiders and the giant house spider are common in Oregon, despite being originally native to Europe. Other common spiders include orb-weavers and cobweb spiders.

Wrapping up

Oregon plays host to a diverse collection of spiders, each species special in its own way. Contrary to widely held beliefs about spiders, most of the species in the state are pretty harmless to humans.

The western black widow is the only medically significant spider in Oregon. Thankfully, bites from this spider are uncommon. Many sightings of false black widows are also wrongly attributed to black widows, which is why knowing how to identify them is vital.

While some spider species can be difficult to live with, you’ll benefit from having some spiders around. They serve as excellent biological controls, helping rid your home of pesky insects at no environmental cost.

If you have spiders in your home, keep an eye on the species you’re harboring. You can choose to embrace harmless species, but rid your home of those that can inflict medically significant bites.

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