Can anyone identify this spider?


June 15, 2012, 08:20 PM
I was setting up a camera trap in the Chequemagon national forest when I happened upon this very very large spider. It was obviously calling the tree I was looking to use home. I took several images and went looking elsewhere.

It was huge, easily the largest spider I've ever come across at this northern latitude, for instance, its sac, was about the size of a half dollar! Overall, its size was equal to that of my hand, including fingers!

I have no experience with such critters, though it is IMO not a wolf spider, those do not venture into trees. Any ideas, or a concrete identification would be appreciated. I put it here in hunting as it appeared to me the best possible place for the topic.

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June 15, 2012, 08:28 PM
Appears to be a freshly molted Carolina Wolf Spider?

June 15, 2012, 08:33 PM
It would be a Wolf Spider around these parts.

Not necessarily completely harmless but almost.
But much much better then a Black Recluse or Black Widow bite.

They seem to be more afraid of me then I am of them.

And thats going way out there on trust on the spiders part!!


June 15, 2012, 08:42 PM
Looks like a classic wolf spider to me. There are a gagillion varieties of them, but they're all pretty much the same beast. Forward eyes, fast strong legs, stalk and sprint attack, limited web use. Some do hunt in trees. Some hunt in my bathroom. One was hunting in my tea kettle once, believe it or not.

June 15, 2012, 10:44 PM
Looks like a classic wolf spider to me. There are a gagillion varieties of them, but they're all pretty much the same beast. Forward eyes, fast strong legs, stalk and sprint attack, limited web use. Some do hunt in trees. Some hunt in my bathroom. One was hunting in my tea kettle once, believe it or not.
I promise you my friend, if that critter showed up in your bathroom you'd shoot it, at least I know I would! :)

June 15, 2012, 11:13 PM
Not very photogenic critters, spiders. Never met one I'd care to date.

June 15, 2012, 11:14 PM
I get those in my shop and their huge. Always been told it's a wolf spider. I'm also pretty sue they eat each other.

June 15, 2012, 11:34 PM
I once left a dark colored glass of water on the floor in my bedroom for about a week. While I was collecting dishes to clean, I picked it up and carried it to the sink. Saw a shimmer that looked like ice cubes moving around... but of course it wasn't ice cube. A MASSIVE spider with legs the entire circumference of the glass was inside!!! I shudder to think taking a big drink of that in the middle of the night in the dark and having that thing on your face or worse in your mouth.

It was the biggest spider I'd ever seen outside of a zoo or museum, much like the one in the photo.

June 15, 2012, 11:44 PM
Oh hell yeah - that's Richard but he answers to Dick. If you see him again, tell him to write. We were supposed to hear from him if he found work.

June 17, 2012, 12:21 AM

I think that Arizona sun is getting' to ya my friend!


Whats the limit on them? I assume that why you were posting the camera.

June 17, 2012, 12:39 AM
The average human eats 4 spiders in their sleep over the course of their life. :what:

If one of them happens to be a full grown wolf spider you can skip breakfast that day.:rolleyes:

June 17, 2012, 02:00 AM
Now how is that anything other than one of those made up stats to scare kids? Does anyone here know of someone who has woken up with spider guts in their mouth? Of all the people in the world who supposedly eat 4 spiders in their lifetimes certainly at least one person would have woken up during the act of consumption, and then spoken about their experience. I've never once heard a personal story of said event.

June 17, 2012, 02:01 AM
next time you need to put your hand next to it in the picture to give it a sense of scale. :P

June 17, 2012, 09:17 AM
next time you need to put your hand next to it in the picture to give it a sense of scale. :P
Nah, that won't work for scale for me. Now, on top of his hand... That'd be perspective.:D

June 17, 2012, 09:37 AM
Looks like a plain old Missouri Taranchula ie; Wolf Spider...........

June 17, 2012, 09:44 AM
That is creepy as hell, damn I hate spiders.

June 17, 2012, 11:42 AM
Never seen a wolfy as big as my hand, but it's not uncommon to find them with dime-sized abdomens and about a 3" legspan here in CO. They're fuzzier in these parts, though.

Not necessarily completely harmless but almost

Well, their bites don't feel good and get a bit inflamed. I dunno what would happen with one that size, but the normal sized (~1.5" legspan) ones I've been bitten by left me a decent welt.

But no, they're not really venomous. Just local irritation, no necrosis or systemic issues (that I've ever heard of).

It was always funny to watch the cats play with them. You know when they bite kitty. lol.

June 18, 2012, 03:14 AM
Looks like a wolf spider or woods tarantula

June 18, 2012, 06:08 AM
There's lots of different varieties of wolf spider. We have one here in Arizona that's fairly small, but fast as hell. It's mottled grey and its legs are more or less evenly spaced around its body, giving it a star or asterisk shape. To my mother's dismay, I won't even try to go after those things. They're harmless and it's completely not worth the effort of going after something that fast. If you miss it once, you'll never get another chance. It'll be gone in a flash.

June 18, 2012, 11:34 AM
If you want to see an even more terrifying cousin of the wolf spider, google huntsman spider. As big as a tarantula but stronger and much faster.

June 18, 2012, 12:13 PM
The only good spider is a dead spider IMO. I woulda used him as target practice myself. I hate those things.

June 18, 2012, 12:19 PM
Ill ask. What caliber for that spider?

June 18, 2012, 12:53 PM
:what:I wonder if I would get him on the first mag ? :rolleyes: Seriously any spider bite will be painfull and prone to infection ! Luckily they usually try to get away given the chance ! I bet you shake your boots out better from now on before putting them on ! Kevin

June 18, 2012, 01:13 PM
Ill ask. What caliber for that spider?


June 18, 2012, 01:17 PM
When I lived in Colorado, we had mountain tarantulas that migrated from the high country to the plains to mate.
Our duplex was right in the way.

One evening I came home from Ft. Carson to find my wife and the neighbor lady running around screaming in the back yard.
Seems my wife went out back to hang up clothes and a tarantula went in the house while the screen door was propped open.

I tried smacking it with a broom, but every time I took a swing, the dang tarantula would jump 6' in the air and take off after me.

I finally got my model 41 S&W target pistol out of my gun box, loaded it with .22 rat shot, and got him on the living room rug the first shot.

We named him Harry, and kept him in a pickle jar full of vodka for years, but he went missing some time ago.

Another time we were coming home from Pueblo very late at night and Highway 115 had a moving black stream clear across it for about 50 yards.

I thought it was running water and drove through it before I could even try to slow down.
Turns out to be thousands of jumping tarantulas the size of tennis balls crossing the road.
The windshield and grill had splattered giant spiders all over it.

I was afraid to get out of the car when I got home, cause I didn't know what was still under it!! :eek:


June 18, 2012, 01:39 PM
Rumor has it that the Weatherby .460 is a one shot stop.:)

June 19, 2012, 04:45 PM
buncha grown men afraid of a harmless spider ain't right...


and RC- the colorado tarantula migration is AWESOME


June 19, 2012, 05:02 PM
Great RC now you've just tainted my love for Colorado with that story. Talk about something out of a nightmare.

And Widowman, if Indiana Jones can hate snakes then I have every right to hate spiders :p

June 19, 2012, 06:07 PM
Around here...we call that a "B.U.S." spider.

Big, Ugly, Sucker!

I hate spiders, all of them.

June 19, 2012, 11:20 PM
sorry im late to the party! its a carolina wolf spider. they can get massive (one of the biggest in North America). often frequent trees for the tasty insects that inhabit them. minimum caliber is .357 mag 158 gr. xtp!

June 19, 2012, 11:23 PM
Giganticus biteumassus.

June 19, 2012, 11:26 PM
too funny!

June 20, 2012, 12:43 AM
Found this one in Houston a few years back. Never seen one like it before.

June 20, 2012, 12:49 AM
^^^Golden silk orb weaver

June 20, 2012, 12:08 PM
This reminds me of my horror spider story.

I was 17 years old and working my first job at a tinseltown movie theatre. They had me opening at 7am and i was pretty sleepy and relatively new to the job. I get in and start walking to the bathroom when i notice something out of the corner of my eye is walking about 10 feet away on the floor and keeping my pace.

I stop, and it stops. About then i get the heebie jeebies and look at the object doing this. It is a spider that I swear was the size of a dinner plate :uhoh:

Maybe not a dinner plate, but it was BIG. I look at it debating what to do and figure that at 6 bucks an hour, and figuring any arachnid that got that big had to be one mean mofo...I let him go his own way and went mine.

Later on, I told a veteran over there about my encounter and he nonchalantly said "oh yeah. wolfgang? hes been around for a while" Dang thing had a NAME

haha sorry about the long read, but this thread reminded me of that story so i figured id share

June 20, 2012, 12:25 PM
the orb weavers are super cool. aka garden spiders, and writing spiders.

They generally put a thick zigzag of silk in the middle of their web to keep birds from flying through it. The wive's tale is that if you can read your name in the zigzag, you will die the next day.

June 20, 2012, 12:45 PM
I had one of those orb spiders on the side of my house a year or two ago. I threw a baseball at it and the darn thing threw it right back at me :p

June 20, 2012, 02:36 PM
In the Philippines I had a huntsman spider bigger than my open hand run across my chest while i laid down for a nap. yes, i jumped up and screamed like a little girl who just had her doll taken from her. it wasn't a proud moment for me. after a protracted fight i finally killed said spider with fire. since that time spiders and i have had an accepted open war where no quarter is asked or given.

June 20, 2012, 04:14 PM
"That's not a spider, mate, THIS is a spider" (Only the bar is photoshopped in this pic):

I'll take bears any day.

June 20, 2012, 07:04 PM
I HATE spiders and am arachnophobic. Shoot it!

June 20, 2012, 07:15 PM
It's Shelob, hunting for Hobbitses, my Precious.

June 20, 2012, 07:16 PM
Looks like a variety of fishing spider. we have them here in southern Indiana. Biggest one we've seen was 5" in diameter

June 21, 2012, 12:53 PM
.177 air pistol is what I uses for arachnids what invades my premises. Little'uns get a burst of air that tends to burst 'em, big'uns gets a pellet.

That's when I don't just catch'em and toss 'em outside in the bushes, or when the dog doesn't play 'em to death.

She's weird. Thinks bees make a tasty snack.

June 22, 2012, 04:00 AM
That OP's buddy is a wolf spider fur sure. Some of them can get big, like the size of your hand when they lay out in stealth-mode. Some mistake um for brown recluse which can really mess you up if their bite isn't treated within 4 to 12 hrs. Those golden orb's in post #33 can get the size of a sparrow bird and knit a web 10ft in diameter I've seen um in the shhwamps and they have been known to catch birds ... yes BIRDS ... as larger as a mocking bird. They get tangled up in their massive web and the orb just sits in waiting for it to exhaust itself trying to escape then moves in for the kill. Red weaver orb's can get big too and they can knit large webs as well. The red ones only come out at night and there’s nothing creepier then slipping out of your tent at night to make a weewee and walking into one of those big o’l web things :barf: and their silk is stronger then steel and once that sticky mess gets on yah you keep feelin it for hours !!! gad I hate spiders and snakes !!! :uhoh:

June 27, 2012, 10:51 PM
I'm seriously arachnophobic. No joke, I will fall into anxiety attacks seeing them. Heart rate shoots through the roof and chest feels tighter and tighter... Not good.

June 27, 2012, 11:04 PM
This here is a brown recluse, or fiddleback. See the violin shape on its back? They're not much bigger than a quarter, legs and all, and are very skinny. Nasty little buggers though. Found one trapped in a coffee cup once, and it was rarin' back threatening to kick my ass. He got sprayed.

June 28, 2012, 11:47 AM
I have them brown recluses in my basement...

Sent from my MP3/Hands-Free/Web-Browsing Device

June 28, 2012, 07:22 PM
I have them brown recluses in my basement...Uhhh, hope you're joking. The bite can be about the same as a venomous snake.

Saw an e-mail a few months ago showing the reaction to a recluse bite. Guy was bit on the back of his hand just above the big joint at the top of his thumb. Hand swelled up like a catcher's mitt. The bite area was probably as large as a tennis ball. Skin and muscle all rotted off. It was a mess. Might have ended up losing his hand as bad as it looked.

June 28, 2012, 08:45 PM
I wish I was... I steer clear of them on a regular basis. They're all over in my area of the city, and it really doesn't revolve around pleasantries. I steer clear of them, and so far they don't bother me... Just have to give 'em space. But even still, the anxiety attacks are horrendous. Like I said earlier, I'm extremely arachniphobic.

Big Nugget
June 28, 2012, 10:21 PM
When we first moved into our house we found a few of these wolf spiders around.

This one was in the garage and seemed friendly enough...:p (

June 29, 2012, 12:22 AM
I have them brown recluses in my basement...

Dude, get a spray spider bomb or two. Seriously! Or hire a pro exterminator, something. There's NFW I'd live in the same proximity as fiddlebacks, they're too evil. I like my flesh, thank you. Think about it, you may have a few, but when a couple of them mate, you'll have a few hundred more.

June 29, 2012, 04:33 AM
I'll look into it.

Sent from my MP3/Hands-Free/Web-Browsing Device

Smokey Joe
June 29, 2012, 09:08 PM
No experience with any THAT big, Feanor, and I've spent my share of time in the Chequamegon.

But at home, my garage is often the shelter chosen by a nice big Golden Garden Spider, which makes a classical orb about 18" in diameter. When my #1 son was small we would amuse ourselves by catching a cricket and tossing it into the web, to watch the spider dash over, bite the cricket to paralyze it, and wind it with silk.

#1 son took to showing this to his friends, too, and some of them were more scared than amused.

To this day, I've had no break-in difficulties of any sort, in my garage or other outbuildings....

July 2, 2012, 08:07 PM
Just don't kill the harvestmen by mistake.

July 6, 2012, 12:42 AM
Thanks for that RC,I'm gonna have nightmares!

July 6, 2012, 01:18 AM
That looks like a nasty wolfspider.They can be very hairy and are FAST.While serving at Ft Hood-in the motor pool---we chased on,and let me tell you this-it ran as fast as most people do walking.Just thinking about it ,and so many years after,made my hairs stand up-lol.
Thank you,

tightgroup tiger
July 6, 2012, 07:19 AM
I'll take the wolf spiders any day of the week over the brown recluse and black widows we have in NC. A lot of black widows!

I was in a LGS that was a really old building, Some guy was there to pick up his order. The counter man said it was still in the card board box and he may as well take the box to, and handed it to him.

The man reached in the box and took out his magazines, and their were black widows in the bottom of the box.

I don't know if they climbed in there from his store or were shipped to him but I won't shop there now, that was my first and last trip to that store.

July 6, 2012, 07:40 AM
Googled it and agree with other posts, a wolf spider almost for sure.

July 7, 2012, 11:44 AM
Was it white meat or dark meat?

July 7, 2012, 04:19 PM
My buddy and I were sitting on the patio one evening reading car magazines ( we were about 14), when I heard him making strange noises. I look up and see him pointing to my chest. I look and there's a big (for around here) wolf spider sitting on my chest. He's about 3" legspan. So I reached down and flicked him off...I happened to flick him in the general direction where my buddy was. I swear there was the smell of hot tennie rubber in the air and he was GONE!

July 10, 2012, 10:44 PM
I used an old Red Ryder to dispatch the Tn variety for the ex-wife. She'd call Oh, great white hunter, that was my cue to get the bb gun and commence an eradication.

July 10, 2012, 10:59 PM
Thanks RC I will not be going to Colorado during the spider migration. I think I would have went to a drive thru car wash before I went home.I will be glad when winter is here and all the biting, stinging, generally aggravating creepy crawlies die.

July 14, 2012, 08:26 AM
well if i seen that thing...a single shot from a #5 shot from a shotgun would make me feel better.....i hate spiders more than i do liars.

July 15, 2012, 07:46 AM
I had no idea that there are that many large spiders in America! I wanted to visit the US sometime next year but I think you all changed my mind :p

Art Eatman
July 15, 2012, 11:23 AM
Used to be an October migration of tarantulas from west to east across the highway south of Gonzales, Texas. Might still be going on, if farming pesticides haven't wiped them out.

An occasional tarantula wanders up onto the porch at Terlingua GhostTown. The usual game is to set your hand down in front. The tarantula then wanders up your arm and the next participant in the game then puts his hand in front; his turn to be the pathway. This goes on until boredom sets in, or until it's time for another beer. :)

July 28, 2012, 12:19 AM
When I taught general science, we would match different spiders to see which was the baddest spider to spider. The brown recluse killed wolf spiders and black widow spiders and was undefeated.

July 28, 2012, 08:05 PM
We grow 'em big in Florida.

We call them Banana Spiders (Golden Silk Orb Weaver Bio-Chem identified earlier)

Smokey Joe
July 28, 2012, 10:48 PM
Brain on Sigs--That is a BEAUTIFUL spider!! Amazing, the seemingly alien creatures with which we share the Earth! Nice photos, too, BTW.

1911 guy
July 28, 2012, 11:52 PM
Golden Orb Weavers get called Bananna Spiders for some reason. The *actual* bananna spider is highly venemous, orb weavers are harmless.

July 30, 2012, 02:35 AM
Read page 1 and thought good no one brought up Australia!!!!

I lived a while in the outskirts of Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park and when it rained outside, there was no stopping the funnelweb spiders!

More times than I care to remember, I woke up with a funnelweb or four on the wall above my head! And can those things leap. Look like a huntsmen but not as flat and hairier legs...these guys are aggressive

Australian funnel-webs are one of the three most dangerous spiders in the world and are regarded by some to be the most dangerous

July 30, 2012, 02:46 AM
I really can't see the spider well but I would leave it be for it could be a venomous one. In Texas we have a lot of critters but only two spiders I really stay away from & that is the Black Widow with the red spot on its back & the even more dangerous Brown Recluse which has a fiddle looking design on its back. Those things pack a punch for I know some people who have been bitten. It's crazy what those small spiders can do to a person. I don't screw with any spiders other that stepping on them & that's only the venomous ones.

July 30, 2012, 02:56 AM
There are spiders everywhere they just stay out of sight so out of mind. There's a lot of insects that can open up a can of butt whoop with a little sting. The worst sting I've ever had though was a hornet & not just one sting this thing stung me 3 times & it won that battle. The stings were on my face & head & I looked as if I was beaten by a tire tool. So i have a healthy respect for them and stay away from them. There's two critters I brake for even when armed & that is a hornet & a skunk. Guess a little off topic but just some personal experiences with some critters & I have had many more that the hornet. Maybe next time i will discuss the more dangerous close calls

July 30, 2012, 11:13 PM
When I taught general science, we would match different spiders to see which was the baddest spider to spider. The brown recluse killed wolf spiders and black widow spiders and was undefeated.
never threw a solpugid in there, didja? ;)

July 31, 2012, 12:13 PM
I had one of these critters (Saddleback Catterpiller) put me in the ER after stinging me on my chest. Had a seriously bad reaction. Plenty of stinging/biting pests in Florida...

August 1, 2012, 06:33 PM

Solifugae are an order of animals in the class Arachnida. They are known variously as camel spiders, wind scorpions, sun spiders or solifuges.

Solifugae are the subject of many urban legends and exaggerations about their size, speed, behaviour, appetite, and lethality. They are not especially large, the biggest having a leg span of about 12 cm (4.7 in).[8] They are fast on land compared to other invertebrates. The fastest can run at a speed of roughly 16 km/h (10 mph) for a short distance, nearly half as fast as the fastest human sprinter. Members of this order of Arachnida apparently have no venom, with the possible exception of one species in India (Rhagodes nigrocinctus) as suggested in one study,[15] and do not spin webs.

Due to their bizarre appearance many people are startled by or even afraid of them. This fear was sufficient to drive a family from their home when one was discovered in a soldier's house in Colchester, England and caused the family to blame the solifugid for the death of their pet dog.[16] The greatest threat they pose to humans, however, is their defensive bite when handled. There is essentially no risk of death directly caused by the bite, but, due to the strong muscles of their chelicerae, they can produce a large, ragged wound that is prone to infection.

Smokey Joe
August 2, 2012, 11:14 AM
Sunspiders essentially saw their prey to bits, then eat the bits. If they were big enough, they'd be really scary to humans. They are the same class as true spiders (Arachnida), but that's like saying that lions are in the same class as humans (Mammalia).

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