How Many Types of Spiders Are There?

How Many Types of Spiders Are There?
Photo by Krzysztof Niewolny

How many types of spiders are there? There are many kinds of spiders, but the most common ones people see around their homes are called wolf spiders, jumping spiders, and brown recluse spiders (also known as violin spiders).

Though there are many types of spiders, we can’t say that exactly 150 different species of spiders are found worldwide.

Scientists don’t even agree on how many spider species there are. That said, it’s pretty safe to say that there are at least several hundred different spider species today.

Let’s look at some of the most common types of spiders and what you can do if you encounter them around your home or in your yard!

What Do Spiders Look like?

Spiders are arachnids, meaning they have eight legs and two body sections. They can have either six or eight eyes.

Some spiders are big enough to be seen with the naked eye. Others, like tarantulas and wolf spiders, can grow up to four inches long.

All spiders spin silk webs at some point in their lives. It is believed that a spider’s web provides a sense of security and safety while they sleep during the day or hunt at night. The spider’s web also acts as a trap for food, like insects and other small prey animals.

This type of webbing is called ‘creeping’ because it allows the spider to sneak up on its prey without being detected.

The number of types of spiders depends largely on what region you live in; how many types of spiders are there? But there are over 40,000 species worldwide.

In general, there are three groups: jumping spiders (with only two eyes), ground-dwelling spiders (those who live under rocks or wood piles), and web-spinning spiders (like the common house spider).

Spider Life Cycle

How many types of spiders are there? There are many different types of spiders. Spiders that belong to the same genus often look similar and behave similarly. Most spider species have a life cycle that consists of four stages: egg, larva, pupa, and adult.

The eggs are laid by the female in a silk sac called an egg sac or cocoon. The eggs hatch into six-legged larvae (they do not have eight legs like adults).

The larvae grow for about one week and then undergo a final molt that produces another set of six legs followed by an exoskeleton that hardens. 

This is the end of the larval stage or spiderling stage. In preparation for this stage, the spider has been eating and storing energy so it can now grow its organs and muscles, and spinnerets.

As soon as it molts from larva to spiderling, it will be able to produce silk at a spinning organ located on the rear portion of its body known as spinnerets.

What Do Spiders Eat?

Spiders are arachnids, a type of invertebrate that can be found on every continent except Antarctica. Some people are surprised to learn that there are only two types of spiders that live in North America: the black widow and the brown recluse.

The most distinguishing physical feature between these two types is the shape of their bodies.

Black widows have an hourglass-shaped marking on their bellies, while brown recluses have a violin-shaped marking on their backs. Spiders eat insects and other small invertebrates, such as snails, worms, and even mice! 

They use silk from their spinnerets to trap or weave prey together with digestive enzymes and then liquefy the meat before sucking it up through a straw-like tube called a proboscis.

They also drink water, often taking in more than they need so they don’t dry out during periods when they cannot access fresh water.

Classification of Spiders

How many types of spiders are there? There are over 37,000 different types of spiders in the world.

Spiders are classified into two groups: Arachnids and arthropods. Arachnids have eight legs, while arthropods have six or more. 

There are three subgroups of spiders: hunting spiders, web-building spiders, and jumping spiders.

Hunting spiders include the Black Widow Spider and the Brown Recluse Spider; they typically prey on other insects.

Web-building spiders make webs out of silk that they use to trap prey like flies and bees. Jumping spiders are usually small in size and can jump 30 times their body length; they often prey on other small insects like crickets or beetles.

Common Spider Species

How many types of spiders are there? There are over 35,000 types of spiders in the world. In North America, there are only about 100 to 200 spider species that live here.

The most common types of spiders found in North America are the black widow, brown recluse, and jumping spider. 

The brown recluse is a type of spider that lives in moist areas like dark corners and under furniture like beds, chairs, and boxes. It has long fangs with a small head and is mostly light brown or tan.

The black widow has venom, which can be deadly if injected into your body from their fangs so it is important to wear gloves when handling this type of spider.

Black widows have a red hourglass shape on their abdomen with a glossy sheen on their bodies. 

1. Wolf Spiders

How many types of spiders are there? There are over 3,000 types of spiders worldwide, but some people only know about wolf spiders.

Wolf spiders are often confused with tarantulas because they have similar appearance and size. However, they are not related to tarantulas, and they aren’t poisonous either. 

They’re mostly active at night and feed on insects. You can tell them apart from other arachnids because their front two legs are much longer than their back two legs.

If you want to identify your spider as an actual wolf spider, look for stripes on its back or abdomen (depending if it is male or female) and long thin antennae that are parallel to the body.

The eyes of a wolf spider should be large and close together, positioned slightly forward on the head.

2. Tarantulas

There are many types of spiders in the world. The most common is the black widow, followed by the tarantula. Tarantulas are large spider that lives in South America, and they can be as big as a dinner plate! 

They have hairy bodies and huge fangs. Tarantulas can also produce silk from their back legs to make webs for catching prey.

Black widows are much smaller than tarantulas, but they’re still pretty scary-looking with their red hourglass shape on their bellies.  

Male black widows are harmless, but female ones will bite if you get too close. In other words, it’s best not to mess with them! 

Females of both species often kill males after mating. That’s because males don’t live very long after mating anyway, so females might as well eat them for nutrients before kicking them out of their territory.

3. Ground Spiders

How many types of spiders are there? There are over 3,000 different types of spiders and they can be found on every continent except Antarctica. Of those 3,000 different types of spiders, only a dozen or so are dangerous to humans.

The most common type that is harmful to humans is the ground spiders which include tarantulas and funnel web spiders.

Ground Spiders are mostly nocturnal, which means they hunt for food at night and spend the day hidden away from predators.

4. Cellar Spiders

Cellar spiders are one type of spider that lives in dark, cool places. They don’t build webs and they prefer to live on the ground.

Cellar spiders usually spin a silken lining on the walls and ceiling of their webs to make them feel more secure.

These spiders can be found worldwide and are also called daddy longlegs or cellar spiders. What are cellar spiders like? – Their name comes from living in cellars.

They’re named for their unusual appearance with long skinny legs. There’s only one genus of this kind of spider: Pholcus (which means cellar).

How many types of spiders are there? There are many other different types of spiders out there, but these cellar spiders are just one example. You might have heard of the word arachnophobia, which is a fear of spiders.

People with arachnophobia might see these cellar spiders as scary because they’re not used to seeing them! Some people love cellar spiders, though, because they provide an important service-preventing pests from eating all your food!

Other people might find them gross because sometimes it looks like these cellar spiders are carrying a human corpse around!

5. Orb-Weaving Spiders

There are over 3,000 species of spiders in the world, and they come in various shapes, sizes, and colors.

Orb-weaving spiders make some of the most spectacular webs you can find. They use their silk to create a circular frame for their web and then attach sticky strands to it. 

The spider will then sit in the center (or near the center), waiting for prey to be trapped in its web. How many types of spiders are there?

There are about 30 different families of orb weavers, with more than 3,000 different types worldwide. Some orb weavers build horizontal webs, while others build vertical ones that stretch from floor to ceiling. 

Although there is an abundance of orb weavers out there, not all of them spin webs as these spiders do.

For example, Daddy Long Legs belong to another family of spiders called the cellar spiders or Phocidae family.

These spiders have eight legs and produce irregularly shaped webs that don’t look like typical orb-weaving webs. 

6. Crab Spiders

how many types of spiders are there? There are over 33,000 different species of spiders in the world.

Some spider types, like crab spiders, can be identified by how they walk and their legs point outward from their body. Other types of spiders have unique features that make them easy to identify.

For example, jumping spiders generally have large eyes and compact bodies with long spindly legs that allow them to jump quickly when prey is spotted.

Orb-weaving spiders typically build webs near water sources because they need the water to survive. The most common type of orb-weaving spider is called an orb weaver.

Crab spiders usually look more elongated than other types of spiders. They also often camouflage themselves on plants and flowers to wait for their next meal to arrive. Jumping spiders tend to be small, with very large eyes in proportion to their body size. 

They also have eight hairless segments (called femora) on each leg, which help them move quickly after spotting prey.

Tarantulas are another type of arachnid that has been known for years for its silk production and web-building capabilities.

7. Jumping Spiders

How many types of spiders are there? The answer to this question depends on what you define as a spider.

Scientists usually classify spiders in three different ways: how they build their webs, how they spin their silk, and whether or not they have venom. The true spider is the most common type, which includes members from more than 6,000 species. 

True spiders do not use webs to catch prey; instead, they rely on a sticky liquid that the spider emits from its mouth (called glue) to trap prey in place. This group also includes jumping spiders and wolf spiders. 

Jumping spiders are often brightly colored with eight eyes that face forward for better hunting ability. They live for about one year, and females can lay up to 2,000 eggs at once!

Spider Habitats

Spiders are one of the most diverse groups of animals in the world. How many types of spiders are there?

There are an estimated 47,000 different species! Habitats range from forests to deserts, and spiders can be found on every continent except Antarctica. 

Most spiders live in habitats with moderate temperatures and humidity levels. The two main types of spider habitats are ground-dwelling and web-based. Ground-dwelling spiders live in burrows underground or under rocks, logs, or other debris. 

Web-based spiders build webs that they reside within or near. Common examples include the black widow spider, garden spider, and cellar spider.

Deadliest Spiders

The tarantula is the world’s largest spider, but it doesn’t happen to be the deadliest. The Brazilian wandering spider is considered to be the most venomous and dangerous, with a potent neurotoxin that can kill humans in two hours. Black widows are also very toxic, having enough venom to kill up to 20 people. 

However, they usually only bite when threatened or bothered and will release their poison after biting so as not to cause more harm than necessary.

Brown recluse spiders aren’t nearly as toxic as black widows because they usually only bite when threatened or harassed and don’t produce many toxins at all. 


How many types of spiders are there? There are over thousands of species of spiders in the world. The number of spider types is so high because they come in various shapes, sizes, and colors.

For example, the orb weaver spider is one type we may be more familiar with as it creates a web to catch prey.

Other common types include tarantulas, funnel weavers, cellar spiders, jumping spiders, wolf spiders, and many others. All spiders use venom to paralyze their victims before eating them.

Several other animals, including humans, can suffer from the effects of spider bites, but there is no evidence to suggest this will occur if you encounter a wild spider or live close to them.

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