Fear of spiders, or arachnophobia, is so common that a hair-raising movie was made about it back in 1990. Many of us love to hate these leggy, hairy creatures. But is our hatred deserved, or are spiders misunderstood? To be sure, some spiders are venomous, although only about a dozen spiders found in the United States are considered medically significant, according to the Illinois Department of Public Health. Illinois is home to both brown recluse and black widow spiders, although not typically as far north as Will County.
Several species of spiders are commonly found throughout northern Illinois, but the vast majority pose no real threats. Some, such as cellar spiders (or daddy longlegs as they are often called) and brown spiders, are commonly found indoors. Others, like wolf spiders, jumping spiders, orb weavers and nursery web spiders, can be commonly found outdoors throughout the state.
While people may have their apprehensions, it’s important that we co-exist with spiders, because they benefit our environment, primarily by keeping insect populations under control, IDNR reports.
Spiders control insect populations everywhere outside, including forests, prairies, farmland and near water, and they do the same indoors, eating ants, flies, roaches and more, Rafac said.
“If you see a spider in your home, it’s definitely feasting on something,” she said.