( Family Gnaphosidae )
SIZE: These spiders are small, with a body that is usually less than one-half of an inch in length.
COLOR: Color varies, but most species are brown. Some have bright orange or red markings.
BEHAVIOR: Ground spiders are a widely varied group. A few species are commonly associated with building invasions, especially the Parsons spider, which is recognized by the cross-like whitish marking on its abdomen. Ground spiders are hunting spiders; they do not build webs, but rather chase down their prey. Most species are night hunters but some are active during the day.
These spiders live outside beneath stones and logs and within leaf litter, mulch and heavy ground covering such as ivy. Indoors, they may be found scurrying along baseboards and hiding beneath furniture and appliances.
Tips for Control
Ground spiders require few treatments indoors to control, although an exterior foundation treatment may be necessary in those rare cases where these spiders regularly invade homes. Placement of sticky insect traps inside your home behind furniture and near doorways may capture many spiders as they enter. The following tips may be helpful in reducing the number of spiders around the home:
Remove or limit heavy, ground-covering vegetation near the building.
Seal cracks and holes in the building’s exterior.
Install tight-fitting screens on all attic and foundation vents.
Seal holes around pipes indoors, especially those plumbing lines leading from basements and crawl spaces, to prevent spiders from entering your home.