21 Types of Spiders in Arizona

Types of Spiders in Arizona
Photo by Krzysztof Niewolny

You’re out enjoying the great outdoors when suddenly you notice something crawling on your sleeve. A closer look reveals it’s a spider, which doesn’t sit well with you.

As long as you live in Arizona, though, there’s no getting away from spiders, and they come in all shapes and sizes—that is to say, there are different types of spiders in Arizona—some more vicious than others, but all dangerous in their own right.

1. Giant Crab Spider

This creepy-looking spider’s scientific name is found nowhere on this planet; it got its name for its resemblance to a crab.

These types of spiders in Arizona have enormous, powerful front legs to grasp prey. They can be easily identified by their two rows of eyes, one on top and one on the bottom. 

Arizona has four species: Heratempus sp., Misumena vatia (AKA Goldenrod Spider), Clubiona licnesiata, and Ozyptila navicularis. All can be easily mistaken for wolf spiders native to Arizona too. 

However, there is no need to worry as spider bites from these types will not cause any illness or irritation. Most spiders love our presence because we deter other bugs, such as mosquitos!

2. Arizona Black Hole Spider

The black hole spider, whose scientific name is Araneus cavaticus are one of the types of spiders in Arizona in the southeastern region.

They spend most of their time below ground, creating an intricate web that expands six feet out from their home. 

The mesh captures prey, including small arthropods, tree frogs, and lizards. You may recognize this spider by its reddish-brown or black body with fuzzy white banding around its abdomen.

3. Green Lynx Spider

The green lynx spider is one of the most beautiful spiders you’ll find in our state. They’re usually very dark; their cephalothorax is emerald green, while their abdomen ranges from black with a banding pattern or just a single light stripe.

They have black spots on their backs, which resemble fur. Females can grow up to 6-7mm in length. Males grow up to 3-4mm in size.

The females lay about fifty eggs at a time and don’t go through the typical molting process that other types of spiders in Arizona do because they can’t cast off their exoskeleton until she leaves it permanently after laying eggs.

4. Varicose Gosiuta

Arizona’s most dangerous types of spiders are the black widow, brown recluse, and hairy desert wolf. You must learn to identify them by their color, shape, size, where they live or walk near, or their webs before entering an area or structure with high-risk factors. 

This spider is among the types of spiders in Arizona, but these three varieties can be deadly if not treated immediately. When looking for these types of spiders, it’s best to wear gloves so you don’t come into contact with them.

5. Camptocosa Parallela

Sometimes when people think of spiders, they only think about a few types. But there are many different types of spiders in Arizona! One type is Camptocosa Parallela, or grass spider. 

These spiders enjoy living outside year-round, but their habitats can range from under logs to bushes or any location with tall grasses or dense foliage.

It has a distinctive white or yellowish pattern on its abdomen and doesn’t spin a web to catch prey like other species. Instead, it hangs around hunting for food until something comes along.

6. Desert Blonde Tarantula

The Desert Blonde Tarantula is a medium-sized brown spider often confused with its tarantula cousin, the Black Widow. Both have eight eyes and no hair.

The main difference between these two spiders is that the Desert Blonde Tarantula has a more bronze appearance on its cephalothorax (head), with its legs being tan or brown. 

The Desert Blonde Tarantula’s primary habitat is under rocks, logs, or plants around landscaped areas. Although they are not aggressive by nature, these types of spiders in Arizona can be known to react if threatened; this includes biting nearby animals or humans if it feels backed into a corner.

7. Grand Canyon Black Tarantula

A dark shiny hairless body can usually identify a black tarantula with short legs with hairs sticking out, and it is one of the types of spiders in Arizona.

They are also quite large, ranging from 1-3 inches in length. Most of these spiders burrow underground, and you can find them at the mouth. The Grand Canyon Black Tarantula can frequently live up to 20 years, and females grow larger than males.

8. Giant Daddy Long Leg

You can easily find them in Arizona, but the Giant Daddy Long Leg is commonly feared. This spider can grow over a foot long while only being an inch or two across when mature.

It has brown coloration with light, white stripes on its body, making it recognizable as a member of the Harvestman family. 

The most common harvestman spider found in Arizona is probably a type known as Dicranopalpus famous. These types of spiders in Arizona look like any other large, brown harvestman and can also grow up to 12 inches long.

Harvestmen are typically harmless and live outside without entering buildings, but if they do show up inside, they will more than likely be able to find their way back out again on their own.

9. Carolina Wolf Spider

Wolf spiders are great house pets because they don’t need fancy food or temperature and are among the types of spiders in Arizona. They eat insects, birds, frogs, rodents, and other spiders. 

They usually keep their webs in attics or garages where they can safely wait for prey to come by. Wolf spiders also mate with other wolf spiders before breeding season starts.

10. Banded Garden Spider

The best way to identify a Banded Garden Spider is by counting how many dark bands it has on its abdomen.

If you estimate six or more, it’s likely a Banded Garden Spider. They’re known for their plump shape, with each leg ending in a triangular-shaped band.

These types of spiders in Arizona are commonly found under rocks, boards, discarded pottery, gardens, and flower beds. Generally, they don’t leave their web unless they need more food.

If you come across one, be sure not to make sudden movements as these spiders don’t like being disturbed when eating or changing their web.

11. Western Desert Tarantula

The Western Desert Tarantula is found mainly throughout southern Nevada and part of Southern California. These tarantulas have long, curving legs spanning up to four inches.

As with all tarantulas, the females are usually significantly more significant than the males. A female may grow up to 4 inches in size, whereas a male only grows up to 3 inches.

In addition, these tarantulas like dryer climates over humid environments, which is why they inhabit parts of southern Nevada and Southern California that get much less rainfall annually.

12. Brown Recluse

The brown recluse is one of the types of spiders in Arizona, typically in semi-desert or desert regions. It’s about six inches long and has a dark, violin-shaped marking on its head. 

You can tell it apart from other spiders by how it walks: the brown recluse always uses just two feet at a time when walking.

As with many types of spiders, you won’t find them as easily in the winter months as you will during summer or fall; that’s because most of them go into hiding during cold weather.

13. Beach Wolf Spider

The Beach Wolf Spider is commonly living near beaches. It is like hiding out on driftwood and in piles of sand where they can wait until something tasty enough crosses their path.

The general range for these spiders is from Texas to southern California. There’s an excellent chance you’ll find them anywhere around a beach in Arizona!

14. Black Widow Spider

A black widow spider’s appearance is unmistakable: it has a spherical black abdomen with a red or orange hourglass-shaped mark on its underside.

The color varies depending on their location, but their bodies always feature two pairs of bulbous sections that form what looks like short legs. 

It also features six small eyes positioned in three rows, three on each side of the spider’s head. As dangerous as they may seem, you should note that there have been no confirmed reports of fatal bites from these spiders since 1959.

15. Phidippus Carneus

You might be thinking that there are only a few types of spiders in Arizona, but we have Phidippus Carneus, which is a bit smaller than some other spiders. The most common species we get in our home is called Phoneutria nigriventer. 

It can grow up to 13cm long (almost 10 inches) and have very hairy legs. They have no problem getting around quickly, so they usually find their way into our house through open windows, screens, etc.

16. Six-spotted Fishing Spider

The best way to identify a spider is by its features, size, coloration, and markings. Spiders have eight legs, while insects only have six. The easiest way to identify a spider is by its webs. 

Most spiders create silk strands when hunting for prey or catching potential mates. If you see any webbing that may not be visible at night or hidden in some area where you won’t see it: Hold a flashlight next to your eyes and slowly scan across the web. 

You should be able to spot some movement if there is one present- even without any wind blowing or bugs around! This method can be applied anywhere outside your home, including the backyard or out on an errand!

17. Chiricahuan Gray Tarantula

You’ll typically find scorpions or black widows around your home in Arizona. However, while they’re both venomous, they only live in certain types of environments. In contrast, Chiricahuan gray tarantulas live all over Tucson because they adapt to various climates. 

However, these types of spiders in Arizona have venom that’s not harmful to humans–it’s no effect on people whatsoever. So don’t worry if you find one near your property; it won’t harm you.

18. Apache Jumping Spider

The most frequently spotted jumping spider in Arizona is the Apache Jumping Spider. This little guy gets its name from a typical behavior of jumping on prey, usually a bug or an insect. 

When identifying these types of spiders in Arizona, you might notice that their legs appear much longer than other species. There’s a good reason for this, too – their long legs allow them to jump on prey like 10 inches!

19. Colonus Hesperus

This Hairy house spiders wander around or hide inside a web. If you find one, don’t panic- they’re not poisonous. Like most house spiders, they won’t bite unless they feel threatened. 

You only need to watch out for when their web gets into places where it could get caught on clothing or hair! The brown recluse spider is smaller than other types of house spiders, with a velvety black coloration and markings on its back. 

You can identify them by looking for a violin-shaped patch on their abdomen, which could also have an hourglass shape outlined around it.

Brown recluses often make their homes inside items such as logs or furniture with crevices such as old shoes, where people sometimes store shoes! They are among the types of spiders in Arizona.

20. Cat-faced Orbweaver

When you find one of these spiders on your wall, it might be hard to tell if it’s a Cat-Faced Orbweaver. Cat-Faced Orbweavers do not live with us humans, but they sometimes come inside when the weather is nice. 

If you’re unsure if this is your Cat-Faced Orbweaver, take a good look at its face. Yes, that’s right – we’re talking about this guy! 

Does he have two large bulges on his head above his eyes? Then you’ve found yourself a Cat-Faced Orbweaver spider (Gasteracantha cancriformis).

21. Koch’s Wolf Spider

A Koch’s Wolf Spider is often found on grassy ground, tree trunks, or fences. One way to tell if it’s a Koch’s Wolf Spider is by looking at their second set of legs. If they are long, thin, and black, then it’s a Koch’s Wolf Spider. 

They are harmless and can be distinguished from other spiders by the white markings on the underside of their abdomen. The only time they will bite humans is when threatened or disturbed.

Conclusion

A desert is a beautiful place where you can experience quiet, but it may take away some of those positive feelings when you come across these 21 types of spiders in Arizona. Some spiders can be harmful, while others are not dangerous at all. 

Educating yourself on the standard types that live near you will help you identify them when they pop up. This list will also help anyone scared of these creatures from getting too scared when they run into one unexpectedly.

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