Do Wolf Spiders Live Up To Their Name?
March 26, 2018
We love irony, don't we? That is why there is a stooge name Curly who has no hair and a friend named Big Al who is only 5' 4" tall. But, more often, names actually fit. Let's take a look at the wolf spider and see if this name fits these arachnids.
Wolves Are Hairy
While wolf spiders don't have a thick coat of fur like wolves do, they are definitely hairier than other spiders. If you see a big, furry spider sitting near a puddle of water in your basement, it is probably a wolf spider.
Wolves Are Hunters
There are many spiders that hunt for their food, rather than hang out in a web all day. Wolf spiders are one of them. In fact, wolf spiders don't create fancy webs to catch flying insects. They use their good eyesight to find their prey.
Wolves Hunt In Packs
It is fairly disturbing to think about a hunter spider crawling around inside a home, but even more disturbing if that spider were part of a pack. Can you even imagine four or five spiders crawling across the floor together in search of something to take down? That is pretty creepy. Fortunately, they don't. Wolf spiders hunt alone.
Wolves Leap Onto Their Prey
Wolf spiders share this characteristic with their namesakes. They leap onto their prey in order to inject it with venom and subdue it.
Wolves Often Live In Caves
So do wolf spiders...sort of. Wolf spiders like holes, burrows, crevices, and similar locations to call home. They are even able to dig one if necessary. But, most of the time, they take advantage of a hole dug by another animal.
Wolves Are Midsize
In the animal kingdom, wolves are in the mid-range as far as size. Wolf spiders are too. At 3/8 - 1 3/8 they're not as big as a tarantula but definitely larger than a common house spider.
While a wolf spider isn't as deadly as a wolf, it definitely bites. Wounds caused by these spiders can be painful but they are not medically important.
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