Should I kill the spiders in my apartment?

All of the ones I’ve seen look the same. Smaller, not very intimidating, usually in the corners near the floor. Are the spiders worth keeping around? Or should I hunt them down and mercilessly slaughter them the way all spiders deserve?

No they kill flies, leave 'em be.

Plus, it tickles when they crawl in your mouth when you sleep. It makes tickley dreams!

If you see one wearing a red suit and a face mask, let him be. He’s there for you.

Spiders of any variety do very little harm and considerable good. They will only very rarely bite a human, and most common North American spiders (I’m assuming that you’re in North America) will only cause a small welt similar to a mosquito bite even if they do bite you. Meanwhile, they’re very effective at catching and eating a host of other uninvited houseguests which don’t share their good manners.

If what you had were brown recluses or black widows (which doesn’t sound too likely), then yes, you might have some cause for concern, but even there, it would probably be safer to leave them be than to try to get rid of them. I would only really worry at all if you were Down Under and dealing with some of those poisonous Australian spiders (everything’s more poisonous in Australia, it seems), but I suspect that the majority of even Australian spiders do more good than harm.

Could you please explain this bit, Chronos? Sounds likke you know a lot about spiders.

I’d be pretty freaked out by having truly dangerous little creatures in the house. I understand that trying to squish a poisonous spider with your fingers is dumb, but not doing anything about having them sounds like taking a risk. You know, sooner or later you have an unfortunate incident…

I don’t know any more about spiders than anyone else who grew up in a house full of them. But most spiders, including black widows and brown recluses (or perhaps especially them) prefer locations which a human would consider secluded and out-of-the-way. So even if you share a house with them, you’re unlikely to have a close encounter with them. No close encounters means no bites, and no bites means no problems. But if you actively go chasing after them with a flyswatter or something, then you’re initiating the close encounter. All of a sudden, the spider is startled, and there’s this big fleshy thing right there doing the startling. Under those conditions, a bite is quite plausible.

Also add to this that even black widow or brown recluse bites are unlikely to be deadly or seriously debilitating to a healthy adult human. They do kill occasionally, but the victims are usually infants, elderly, or weakened by some other condition.

I usually squash any bugs that I find indoors, but spiders are a different matter. I think they do considerably more good than harm, so I let them go about their business.

Don’t let spiders live under your bed. Some varieties at least will bite you as you sleep.

I had a neighbor who got a spider in her ear in the night and it bit her and made her ear swell shut. Took two days in the hospital to get it out and she wasn’t a happy camper! So, I don’t really want any spiders in my house. If you really don’t want to kill them, get one of those vacuum-the-bug devices and catch them and put them outside.

OK, time to fight some ignorance. Actually ALL spiders will attempt to bite you in your sleep. If you sleep with your eyes part way open, they will seek out your eyeballs :smack: , ears and genitalia, in that order, and deliver their supremely debilitating bite. People who deny this have already fallen prey to the mind-control venom recently evolved by the common house spider, and are attempting to discourage the destruction of the arachnid scourge. All spiders must die, it is your duty to kill them. All of them.

spiders…bleah!

They definitely favor the scrotum and foreskin, if you have either.

You almost had me there. I was about to ask for a cite, but I realize you were just kidding.

[sub]all hail to our 8-legged gods… all hail arachinda[/sub]

Anybody read Kary Mullis’s chapter on brown recluses? Pretty funny, ends with “biodiversity be damned.”

Brown recluse spiders can definitately be fatal to anyone. People can lose limbs. The problem is, in the North East, they are rare. So, if a recluse actually bites someone the medics wouldn’t know exactly how to treat it.

Now, down in Florida I seen tarantulas crawling across my dorm room. Now, if there is one thing I am afraid of it’s spiders, it’s another level when it’s almost 5 inches long!

To the OP, if you have a pet like a dog or a cat I would at least try to relocate the spiders incase they can do damage to your pet. If you have a cat like ours, who likes to torture anything moving(including our legs as we walk by) can seriously get into some trouble if a Black Widow or Recluse is within reach.

Slaughter them! KILL! KILL!! Show no mercy!

And people wonder why I drink a triple Espresso before bedtime, and sleep with a loaded .45 under my pillow.

Earlier this summer I found a black widow spider in the corner of our garage. As the parent of an 8-month-old just starting to explore his surroundings, I was more than mildly concerned.

I’m not sure if it died due to the poison in the bug spray, or from drowning in it.

Wolf spiders don’t spin a web and love to eat cock roaches!

I’m in the Midwest, and as far as I know, the really mean and icky ones (which I will not specifically refer to by name, lest I attract them) aren’t common in these parts. The one intimidating one that I did see (kind of dark, moving fast, no web within sight) got a swift smack with my shoe.

Maybe a compromise: if they’re in the way, they’re dead. Keep to themselves, and we’ll be OK.