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Jumping spiders for pest control (?)

Posted by brainiac (My Page) on
Fri, Sep 24, 04 at 1:20

Early last spring I started quite a few plants in my basement for my outdoor garden. A few weeks into the process I started having a mite problem. I started treating them with Safer soap, but then moved up to pyrethrum. This kept them to reasonable levels but they didn't go away. One night I saw a hairy spider about the size of one of my fingernails jumping around on a plant. It turned out to be a species of jumping spider. I got creeped out by it but decided to just leave it there. Well, my mite problem went away. I looked for the spider the next day but couldn't find it. Then that evening I found it in my kitchen. I wasn't positive if all the mites were gone so I put it back in the basement. Then it disappeared. And so did the mites.

My question is has anyone ever released one of these larger jumping spiders into their indoor garden for pest control ? I am in Minnesota USA and from what I can tell they aren't poisonous here. Maybe in the tropics you have poisonous ones the size of basketballs and would tend to keep those out of your living quarters. The little buggers are really creepy, and I am sure someone not interested in plants or wildlife would immediately kill one if they saw it in their house. I have kept tabs on a few in the garden outside and am thinking if I had a large pest outbreak I would capture one and bring it inside. Does that sound really crazy ? Actually it does to me :)


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Jumping spiders for pest control (?)

I don't think I'd want any spider that jumps in my house, although most other spiders don't bother me much. I've considered buying one of those small lizards (called chameleons in pet stores here, but actually they are anoles) and releasing it in the plant room, but my family would freak out if it wandered somewhere else in the house.

Just make sure it's not a spider that bites. I know some people who have had serious medical problems from spider bites.


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RE: Jumping spiders for pest control (?)

Jumping spiders are harmless (insert disclamer here lol) If you want to let lizards loose in the house (the wont eat mites they are too small) try house geckos, or for roaches use tokay geckos


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RE: Jumping spiders for pest control (?)

Those jumping spiders are amazing! I had the same experience. Nothing ever cleaned up my plants as fast or as well as one of those guys. I used to think they were gross, but after I discovered their prodigious mite-eating abilities I actually began to think of them as cute! (they actually are cuter than regular spiders). Problem is, it's hard to find them when you need them. If I'm lucky enough to find one when I have an indoor pest problem, I always bring them in. I haven't had the same success with them on my outdoor plants - short attention span maybe? They tend to wander off before all the offending bugs are gone. In any case, they are definitely one of my favorite bugs and I've found them to be more effective (and less annoying to have around) than any other bug predator (including lady bugs).


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RE: Jumping spiders for pest control (?)

I NOTICED ONE JUMPING FROM POT TO POT IN MY GROWROOM.IT WAS INTERESTING THE WAY THAT IT WAS SCANNING MY PLANTS FOR BUGS.OBVIOUSLY A VERY VERASIOUS HUNGER WAS DRIVING THIS HUNTER.I AM USUALLY QWUIK TO KILL SPIDERS,BUT THIS JUMPING SPIDER DIDN'T LOOK AS EVIL.SEEMED MORE LIKE MY HYPER ACTIVE LITLE ALLY!!!!!!I HAVEN'T SEEN HIM SINCE THAT DAY EITHER.THANX FOR THE STORY.


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