Spider Hunting!

58,315

16

75

Published

Introduction: Spider Hunting!

This will teach you how to locate grass spiders in the dark using only a flashlight. It's fun, fascinating, and simple. I let my sons, ages 12 and 7, demonstrate the technique.

Step 1: Tools Needed:

You will need a bright flashlight, and some short grass in a dark area. A camera or camcorder is optional if you want to show other people how fun and simple it is!

That's it, let's go!

Step 2: Shinin 'em Spiders!

Place the flashlight (we are using a small LED flashlight, but most any should work) against your head at eye level and pointing toward the direction you are looking.

Shine the light on the grass in front of you about 6 to 10 feet away. You can find spiders much farther than 10 feet from you, but it is more difficult to walk up on them without losing exactly where they were.

Slowly turn your head back and forth and look for small "dew drop" like gleams in the grass. These are the eyes of the spiders reflecting your light.

Make a note of exactly where a gleam is located and walk directly to it, keeping the flashlight trained on that area. However, once you have pinpointed the location, it is not necessary to keep the light by your head because you will not likely see the reflection once you begin moving anyway.

Step 3: There He Is (or She, I'm Not Much on Spider Knowledge).

When you get to the place where you saw the gleam, you have to get real close to the ground because these guys are small, mostly about an inch in diameter or less. However, they are usually quite polite and hold still so you can find them.

Step 4: That's All There Is to It!

Now, watch the video where my sons demonstrate. It's, uh, very dark (duh) but you can see the important parts.

Share

    Recommendations

    • Colors of the Rainbow Contest

      Colors of the Rainbow Contest
    • Stick It! Contest

      Stick It! Contest
    • Pets Challenge

      Pets Challenge
    user

    We have a be nice policy.
    Please be positive and constructive.

    Tips

    Questions

    75 Comments

    Me and my brother are 12(me) and 7(him)

    I'd like to find the BIG 2"+ spider was on my blouse yesterday .... walking toward my face ... After hollering out in shock, I flung it to my desk after which it ran away.... and I presume is possibly still in this room somewhere.

    4 replies

    Poor spider. It wouldn't hurt you. It more likely would run away, it probably now made a web in a forgotten corner and caches pesky bugs.

    Only thing worse than poisenous spiders, is poisenous that are invisible crawling on you and burning; Ever think of that? Invisible spiders crawling on you while their on fire?

    dont do meth.

    Pfft, I don't take advice from LED firefighters.

    You forgot the last step where once you locate the spiders you proceed to napalm strike the entire area!

    This is like the
    "nope how-to" lol

    1 reply

    I know. It's information you want to know, but not really. Oh! Fascinating, there are thousands of spiders in my yard! OH! Wait, there are thousands... in my yard... *runs back inside and locks door*

    I do this exact method. My friends have no idea how. It's pretty funny to watch them try to prove that I'm faking.

    If you are hunting wolf spiders, as it seems to me from the comments and photos, you may find some of their trapdoors.  As you approach, the spiders will often run into their trapdoors and shut the lids.  It is very interesting to use a twig to flip the trapdoor open-
    The spider comes up the tunnel, grabs the lid and pulls it back over the hole- very exiting to watch!

    Once i held the door open with the twig, and the spider and I had a round of tug-o-war before i let it close the door- it was sooooo mad at me!

    How common are the spiders in grass? This makes me not want to go barefoot anymore :\

    2 replies

    I guess it depends on where you live, but these are VERY common where I live, in North Carolina. I'd say a 10ft x 10ft square of grass in my yard would easily have at least half a dozen of these spiders; probably many more than that.

     oh great haha im in NC. time for shoes at night

    I am fascinated by spiders.  I always rescue them and bring them outside if I find any in my house.  These webs are cool, specially when they have drops in them and the sun shines into it.  I am attaching a few images of an unknown species I saw in my yard this summer.  Anyone know what this is?

    Check out my blog at http://naturelover-doodle.blogspot.com/ for more nature related stories.

    HPIM1170Spider.JPGHPIM1164Spider2.JPGHPIM1165Spider1.JPGHPIM1159Spider3.JPG

    I find spiders fascinating. If I find any in the house I usually catch them and bring them outside.  Couldn't kill one!  I love looking at their webs.  Found this big one in my yard recently. 

    Check out my blog http://naturelover-doodle.blogspot.com/ for more outdoor stories

    HPIM1165Spider1.JPGHPIM1170Spider.JPGHPIM1164Spider2.JPGHPIM1159Spider3.JPG

    awsum, realy great to share a little tip with evryone. might want to put a disclaimer in just in case though, some spiders have a mean bite. this is the effect of the venom in the bite of a brown recluse spider (from canada) after 10 days and a pic of the spider itself.

    3 replies

    I work in an entomology lab, I used to wonder why no one seemed concerned with being bitten by the hundreds or thousands of spiders they collect in their experiments. One day I stumbled upon an article describing that it was in fact very difficult to be bitten by a spider. I couldn't find the article for you today, but I did find this one which is similar:

    http://www.dbskeptic.com/2008/02/03/spider-bites-are-an-overrated-menace/

    cheers, realy interesting. the picture i was trying to post was from an email from my relative in canada about these brown recluse spiders (which also featured heavily in that article)

    Look up that email on Snopes.com. It's actually a bacterial infection caused by the bacteria on the fangs of the spider. Essentially, the fangs acted like a hypodermic needle and delivered the bacteria deep into the lower, vulnerable layers of skin.

    There are no recorded deaths from Brown Recluse spider bites, and to quote the Missouri Medicine Journal, "Most brown recluse bites heal up nicely within two to three months without the need for medical treatment at all. Also the long term medical outcome is excellent without treatment"

    More about the Brown Recluse Email