Do Spiders Die in Winter?

female Trochosa ruricola (rustic wolf spider)

The changing of seasons can often lead to several changes for us humans, including developing new routines, changing moods, and altering environments. While insects are a common sight during the summer, many of them seemingly disappear overnight when cold weather arrives. Although most people don’t think about what happens to spiders during the winter, the team at Emtec Pest Control knows they are a year-round problem for many homeowners.

Sadly, many spiders will “bite the dust” when temperatures drop below freezing. Many species, including the North American Black and Yellow Garden Spider, only survive for one season and die soon after reproducing. These eggs are commonly deposited in a secure location, ready to hatch at a later time. While just one example, there are many species of spiders with a lifespan that exceeds two years – meaning they are well-equipped to survive the winter.

How Do Spiders Survive Winter?

Most spiders are considered cold-blooded. This means that their body temperature will fluctuate with the environment they are present in. As temperatures gradually cool down around Oklahoma, these spiders will release a chemical similar to anti-freeze known as “polyhydroxy alcohol.” This fluid mixes with the liquids found in the spider’s bloodstream and prevents ice crystals from forming internally.

One caveat to the success of this evolutionary trait is that the spider will need to seek shelter in a location where they will not be encapsulated in ice. With this in mind, it is easy to see why homes, garages, attics, basements, and sheds can become so hospitable for spiders to survive the cold winter. Many spiders will seek shelter indoors, often small from being hatched during the fall, and can remain undetected in a safe, dark nook somewhere inside of a home. Other possible locations for safety include rock piles, leaves, or inside tree bark.

Although some spiders will fight to find their way indoors, they often don’t want to share that space with humans. Once they find a secluded spot inside of a home, they will usually remain there in a state of mild hibernation. However, they will still wake up on warmer days to hunt for food. Typically, creating an anti-freeze-like chemical puts them in a state of diapause in which their metabolism and digestion slow down, often leading to less of a need for food during the winter.

Spiders will often lay their eggs during the late fall or early winter months. Ultimately, this could mean that many of the spiders seen inside a home during the winter may not have ever been outdoors before. While letting these spiders continue to provide pest control undisturbed is often the best approach, we don’t blame homeowners for not wanting to make them a part of the holiday season. We can provide removal and elimination services to help restore your home.

Spider garden

Evict Spiders from Your Home with Emtec Pest Control

Emtec Pest Control can complete a full inspection, identify and spiders present, and use the most effective course of treatment to remove them. We have over 40 years of experience and knowledge handling spiders and other common pests and are dedicated to eliminating and preventing any invasion you may have. Contact us today to schedule an inspection or call us to get started.

At Emtec Pest Control, we are committed to safe and responsible pest control. We understand that your family’s safety is your number one priority, so we make it our priority, too. If you have any other questions about any of these pests or pest control for your home or business, contact your Oklahoma pest control experts at Emtec Pest Control by calling us or by filling out our online contact form. Our service areas in Northeast Oklahoma include Bixby, Broken Arrow, Catoosa, Owasso, Jenks, Sand Springs, Sapulpa, Skiatook, Stillwater, Tulsa and the surrounding areas. In Central Oklahoma, we service Edmond, Moore, Oklahoma City, Yukon and the surrounding areas. You can also connect with us on social media for more helpful pest control tips and information. We are on Facebook.