Sometimes I find “wildlife” in my house, like this creature that turned up in my Living Room this week. Hacklemesh Weavers can live through the Winter and therefore are often found in households during cold weather.
Outside, their irregular looking webs can be seen in bark and woodpiles and often have roughly the form of a funnel. This species is common in and around homes, but is also found living under rocks, logs and leaf litter. It prefers dark, relatively humid places.
It is typical for this creature to have chevron-like lighter areas on its abdomen. Its legs are reddish to dark brown. It has eight eyes of relatively similar size, arranged in two horizontal rows of four.
The Hacklemesh Weaver makes a special kind of silk. Instead of sticky strands, the silk is made of fine, woolly fibers that can entangle even the smallest prey. The spider feels the vibrations from the struggling victim and rushes out to capture it.
In England, this arachnid is sometimes called the “Old Churchman” because it can be seen scurrying around on the walls and pews of old churches before rain storms.
Silk-spinning spiders have been around for roughly 400 million years, and they’ve made good use of their time. Today, they occupy just about every habitable region of the Earth…as well as my house.