Spiders have an ominous, but often undeserved reputation. Though most spiders are venomous and considered predators, of the thousands of species found in Canada, only a select few are actually considered a health threat. In fact, spiders are helpful in controlling other pests in the home or garden since they feed on other insects.
Spiders are widely recognized for their tiny bodies and 8 legs. Spiders have 2 body regions: cephalothorax (head and thorax fused) and their abdomen. The venom of most species is not very toxic to humans, usually resulting in no more than slight swelling, inflammation, or an itching sensation. In most cases, spider’s fangs are too small or weak to puncture human skin. Spiders will usually not attempt to bite unless accidentally trapped against the skin or grasped. Spiders actively guarding egg sacs or young however, tend to bite and attack more.