• ljmarkson

Can Pest Control Companies Help You Coexist with Nature?

Updated: Dec 25, 2020

When I found a beautiful spider in the middle of cobwebs on my rarely used garden rake, I started searching the internet to learn more about it.

Surprisingly, if you search spider species on the internet, raid.com pops up second after Wikipedia with the opening statement “More than 40,000 spider species have been identified to date but the real number is likely higher than that. Get to know some common spider types and learn how to help keep them from invading your home.”

The common triangulate cobweb spider that built this web in the corner of an outside window to catch insects is not invading my house, but offering natural pest control.

A similar situation happens when searching other common insects including ants or bees. The facts may be true, but pest control companies have too healthy a bias against insects to be the source for learning how an insect functions in an ecosystem. They are better off staying in their lane and telling us about cockroaches.

The triangulate cobweb spider's web and the insects that get caught in it are part of the ecosystem of my yard

The tiny spider with the iridescent triangle design on its abdomen that I found on my rake was a common household spider called the triangulate cobweb spider. There are no known cases of human envenomation (poisoning by venom) ever recorded from the bites of the triangulate cobweb spider yet unlike ecocentric or educational sites that offer just the facts, pest control companies and their advocates give facts in the context of why these beneficial and harmless spiders are still pests that need to be eradicated.

I'm pretty arachnophobic but it's easy to coexist with a spider as tiny and beneficial as this one that's just protecting her egg sacs.

One of the top sites that popped up when I searched for information on triangulate cobweb spiders was a blog that seems to exist to advertise pest control companies. It acknowledges the cobweb spider is not dangerous but indicates its mere existence can be distressing, encourages using residual pesticides which will keep killing over time, and offers a gruesome and detailed description of how to crush spider egg sacs because they protect the eggs from pesticides.

The gossamer triangulate cobwebs spider egg sacs shield the itsy bitsy eggs from pesticides.

In an encouraging twist, a pest control company in Alabama recognizes “cobweb spiders are generally accepted inside of a home as a natural means of pest control. Spiders feed exclusively on other insects, which helps to manage pests at home...so it may be time to make peace with these little critters in your house.” Coexist with nature? I couldn’t agree more. If only all pest control companies followed this advice!

This unfortunate earwig was in a triangulate cobweb spider web in our gardening storage area. No need for more invasive pest control than spiders because earwigs may occasionally wander into homes but can't survive there.

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