Are Daddy Longlegs Venomous?

February 2019

Have you heard that daddy longlegs are one of the most venomous types of spiders, and the only reason humans aren’t in danger is because their fangs are too short to puncture our skin? If you have, you are definitely not alone. This common tale has been passed down over many years and has probably caused much fear in a lot of people, especially those with a bad case of arachnophobia. However, we think that it is time to set the facts straight about daddy longlegs. That way, you can stop living in fear every time you see a daddy longlegs in your home.

Different daddy longlegs

Before we get into a daddy longlegs' venomous nature, it is important to note that there are actually two types of animals commonly referred to as “daddy longlegs.” The first type, and most correct use of the name “daddy longlegs,” is the opilionid arachnid. Despite having eight long legs, opilionids aren’t spiders at all. They have two eyes rather than eight and do not produce silk. In addition to the name “daddy longlegs,” these arachnids are also called “harvestmen” and “opilionids.” They can be found in moist, dark places and eat decomposing plant and animal matter. Because they tend to hide under logs and rocks, you aren’t very likely to come across this type of daddy longlegs unless you are looking for them.

The other type, and most common use of the name "daddy longlegs," is the pholcid spider. Pholcids are true spiders. As a result, you should actually refer to them as “daddy longlegs spiders.” Like opilionids, the pholcid spider has eight long legs and a small body. Daddy longlegs spiders make webs out of silk and are commonly found in cellars and other areas of the home such as dark corners and closets.

Daddy longlegs: facts and fiction

Since there are two different animals referred to as “daddy longlegs,” you may be wondering whether the myth applies to one, both, or neither of these animals. Given that pholcids are commonly seen in homes, and opilionids are found outside under logs and other debris, the myth most likely refers to pholcids.

Pholcids, or daddy longlegs spiders, are actually venomous. As for their fangs, the daddy longlegs spider has fangs that are similar to the fangs of the brown recluse. This means that they could penetrate human skin in theory. However, it is extremely rare for them to bite people. In fact, it is so rare for them to bite, that scientists haven’t actually dedicated time to research how a bite could affect a human. In the rare case you do get bit by a daddy longlegs spider, you probably won’t feel much other than a faint, burning sensation that only last a few seconds. In other words, there is no reason to be scared of these spiders. In fact, they are probably much more scared of you.

As for opilionids, or harvestmen, you don't need to be afraid of them at all. Opilionids have no venom or fangs. Thus, when it comes to these critters, the myth is totally false.

How Aptive Environmental can help

If the thought of having daddy longlegs in your home still makes you uncomfortable, Aptive Environmental can help. Our service plans provide a professional solution that keeps your indoor environment protected from spiders through effective treatments. Service begins with a thorough inspection of your property by a certified pest specialist. Your specialist will identify any risk areas and treat your home using a customized protection plan that keeps your property protected from spiders year-round.

After our first visit, an Aptive professional will return the following month to rid the exterior of any surviving spiders and continue to treat your home. We know that for many homeowners, it’s not if the pests will return, but when. When spiders come back, we do too – at no additional cost.

Remove the stress of dealing with spiders and having to store and apply pesticides inside your home. Use a professional you can trust. Call Aptive Environmental today to schedule your service.

Recommended Reading

Pest Control: The Lifecycle of Pests

Pests are a nuisance to homeowners, and can cause a lot of damage to property, as well as health risks to humans and pets. To effectively control pests, it is important to understand their lifecycle and behavior. In this article, we will explore the lifecycle of...

Feb 17, 2023

Data, Patterns, and Pest Control

As a leading pest control provider, Aptive service professionals encounter all kinds of pest activity across the country. Our ability to monitor this pest activity has provided valuable insights into understanding the prevalence of specific pest types at different...

Aug 1, 2023

Jumping Spider Control: Effective Methods to Eliminate and Prevent

Jumping spiders may seem harmless, but they can quickly get out of hand. With their swift movements and sharp vision, jumping spiders can be a nuisance and even pose risks to you and your surroundings. That's where effective jumping spider control methods come into...

Jul 26, 2023

Brown Recluse Spider: Facts, Bites & Control

Did you know that brown recluse spiders, also known as violin spiders, are among the most common venomous arachnids found in the United States? These elusive creatures are famous for their distinctive violin-shaped markings on their bodies. Brown recluse spiders...

Jul 14, 2023

Ultimate guide to identifying, preventing, and treating earwigs

Did you know that there is an insect with a rather peculiar name that often sparks curiosity and even fear? Meet the earwig, a nocturnal creature belonging to the order Dermaptera. With elongated bodies and distinctive pincers called cerci at their rear end, these...

Jun 19, 2023

Carpet Beetles: Identification, Prevention & Control Tips

Did you know that there are tiny creatures lurking in your home that can cause significant damage to fabrics and other materials? These are carpet beetles, small oval-shaped insects with a varied color pattern. There are several species of carpet beetles, but the...

Jun 12, 2023

Flea Bites: Symptoms, Causes & Treatment

Have you ever noticed a red bump on your skin that is itchy and painful? If so, you might have been bitten by a flea. Fleas are tiny insects that feed on the blood of humans and animals, and their bites can cause discomfort and irritation. In this article, we will...

May 31, 2023

Get Rid of Silverfish: Your Ultimate Guide!

Silverfish are common household pests that can be found in dark and damp areas of your home, such as basements, attics, and bathrooms. They are named after their silvery, metallic appearance and fish-like movements. These insects have a three-stage life cycle: egg,...

May 25, 2023

The Short Lifespan of Flies

Flies have a relatively short lifespan, typically living for only a few weeks to a few months, depending on the species. Their lifespan is influenced by various factors, including temperature, humidity, and availability of food and water. Flies lay their eggs in...

Feb 15, 2023

What Attracts Ants to Your Home?

Ants are small, seemingly harmless pests, but without proper treatment they can quickly become a massive nuisance. Oftentimes, homeowners don’t know where to start with ants and typically try solutions that only temporarily fix the problem. It can be difficult to...

Nov 22, 2022

How to Pest-Proof Your Garbage Cans

Depending on where you live, you may be familiar with managing pest-ridden garbage cans. What many city-dwellers and suburbians don’t realize though, is how easy it is for their own trash cans to become home to opportunistic pests. Allowing bugs to live in your...

Oct 20, 2022

Take back your home with pest control today.

Pin It on Pinterest