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Eratigena atrica
(Giant House Spider)

Featured spider picture The spider species Eratigena atrica, commonly known as Giant House Spider, belongs to the genus Eratigena, in the family Agelenidae. Eratigena atrica spiders have been sighted 8 times by contributing members. Based on collected data, the geographic range for Eratigena atrica includes 5 countries and 3 states in the United States. Eratigena atrica is most often sighted indoors, and during the month of May.

Taxonomic Hierarchy

  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Arthropoda
  • Class: Arachnida
  • Order: Araneae
  • Suborder: Araneomorphae
  • Family: Agelenidae
  • Genus: Eratigena
  • Species: Eratigena atrica

Other Common Names

Giant House Spider, Drain Spider, Greater European House Spider

Author

Carl Ludwig Koch, 1843

Primary Colors


Sightings Overview

There have been 8 confirmed sightings of Eratigena atrica (Giant House Spider), with the most recent sighting submitted on December 18, 2023 by Spider ID member kevie. The detailed statistics below may not utilize the complete dataset of 8 sightings because of certain Eratigena atrica sightings reporting incomplete data.

  • Web: 13% of the time, Eratigena atrica spiders are sighted in a spider web (Sample size: 8)
  • Sex: 1 female and 1 male.
  • Environment: Eratigena atrica has been sighted 0 times outdoors, and 8 times indoors.
  • Outdoors:

Location and Range

Eratigena atrica (Giant House Spider) has been sighted in the following countries: Canada, Ireland, Lithuania, Switzerland, United States.

Eratigena atrica has also been sighted in the following states: Michigan, Washington, Wisconsin.

Seasonality

Eratigena atrica has been primarily sighted during the month of May.

  • January: 1
  • February: 1
  • March: 1
  • April:
  • May: 3
  • June:
  • July:
  • August: 1
  • September:
  • October:
  • November:
  • December: 1

Additional Remarks

  • Can be mistaken for the “hobo spider” (Eratigena agrestis) or the “barn funnel weaver” (Tegenaria domestica), but are actually quite different when seen by an experienced eye.
  • Leg span can be very large; some of the largest ones reach about 4 inches.
  • Often found in bathtubs or showers first thing in the morning (or in the middle of the night) as it seeks out sources of water and may become stuck: able to get in, but not able to climb out.
  • With speeds clocked at 1.73 ft/sec (1.17 mph), this spider held the Guinness Book of World Records for top spider speed until 1987 when it was displaced by “windscorpions” (solpugids).
  • Species is often found living indoors, where it out-competes and displaces the “hobo spider,” helping to keep them from becoming established indoors. Male “giant house spiders” have even been witnessed killing male “hobo spiders” without necessarily eating them.

Featured Pictures

Picture of Eratigena atrica (Giant House Spider) Enlarge Picture
Picture of Eratigena atrica (Giant House Spider) - Lateral Enlarge Picture
Picture of Eratigena atrica (Giant House Spider) - Dorsal Enlarge Picture
Picture of Eratigena atrica (Giant House Spider) - Dorsal Enlarge Picture
Picture of Eratigena atrica (Giant House Spider) - Female - Dorsal Enlarge Picture
Picture of Eratigena atrica (Giant House Spider) - Dorsal,Eyes Enlarge Picture
Picture of Eratigena atrica (Giant House Spider) - Lateral Enlarge Picture
Picture of Eratigena atrica (Giant House Spider) - Male Enlarge Picture
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