In the animal kingdom, there’s a pecking order. Many insects feed on one another. You’ve probably heard of lizards eating bugs which is why many people don’t mind having them around.
Bed bugs are some of the most undesirable insects you can come across. Consider yourself lucky if you’ve never had an encounter with these creepy creatures. They bite and infest your furniture like no other and are overall unpleasant to have around. Since spiders tend to feed on common household pests, you may be wondering if spiders eat bed bugs.
Do spiders eat bed bugs?
The answer is that spiders will eat bed bugs. Some spiders are opportunistic so, if bed bugs can get caught in a spider’s web, they’ll eat them. Keep in mind that, for the most part, spiders don’t actively seek out bed bugs for a meal. If they’re in a home where bed bugs are, they will take the opportunity to have a meal. While many spiders do not usually eat bed bugs, a few species actively seek out bed bugs as a meal.
What Do Spiders Usually Eat?
There are over 45,000 species of spiders known to man, so the diets of one spider may not be the same as another. Generally speaking, most species of spiders feast on various insects.
The common household spider, which lives in two out of three homes in the United States, eats common household pests. So, while having a spider or two in your home isn’t an ideal situation, especially if you’re afraid of them, they are known to eat any insects that make their way into your home.
For example, they’ll eat mosquitos, cockroaches, moths, and other pests that commonly show up in your home. And as mentioned earlier, if given a chance, they’ll eat bed bugs in your home.
Since bed bugs and spiders are both the most active during the evening and nighttime, it’s probable that they will have some run-ins with one another if you have bed bugs in your house. This is the time bed bugs are most likely to get caught in the web of a common household spider.
RELATED: Are Wolf Spiders Dangerous?
More giant spiders still consume insects as part of their primary diet. But, some species of larger spiders have been known to worms, frogs, lizards, and even birds and bats.
What Are Bed Bugs?
You’ve probably heard of bed bugs before, but do you know what they are? Bed bugs are the bugs of many people’s nightmares. They get their name from the fact that they live in mattresses and feed on the blood of humans or other animals while they sleep. Creepy right?
Bed bugs can be found pretty much anywhere where people gather, which adds to their distastefulness. They can be in hotels, hostels, community centers, schools, stores, you name it. These small, blood-sucking insects can easily infest your home if you’re not careful.
Bed bugs can cling to your clothing and other things and travel home with you. If you stay at a place that has bed bugs, you are probably bringing them home with you. If there are rust-colored stains on the bedding or mattress, you have bites on your body upon waking up, or blood stains from yourself, bed bugs have gotten to you.
RELATED: Do Spiders Eat Silverfish?
When staying at a hotel, hostel, or new place, be sure you check the mattress for any signs of bed bugs before sleeping in it or setting your luggage down on it.
What Types of Spiders Hunt Bed Bugs?
The common household spider is tiny, making dining on bed bugs a little difficult for them. Bed bugs are considerably larger than the tiny household spiders you see crawling around. Granted, if a bed bug gets caught in their web, they will eat as much of it as they can.
Even though the majority of spiders won’t actively seek out bed bugs, there are a few that are known to do so. These spiders are bigger than the common household spider, making it easier for them to consume a bed bug—yellow sac spiders, jumping spiders, Wolf spiders, and Running Crab spiders feast on bed bugs.
If you know anything about spiders, you know that these four species have one major thing in common. If you don’t know, they don’t spin webs. So if they don’t spin webs, how do they hunt? These spiders are known to hunt their prey by sneaking up on them or jumping on them.
RELATED: Do Spiders Eat Cockroaches?
If I Have Bed Bugs, Can I Use Spiders to Solve The Problem?
Almost anything is possible, but using spiders to combat the problem isn’t the best solution if you have a bed bug infestation. There could be hundreds of bed bugs in a room, and you would need a lot of spiders to eliminate the problem. There are plenty of other, more effective solutions to a bed bug infestation.
Now, if you only have a bed bug or two, letting mother nature take control may work. Keep in mind that even if you think you only a few bed bugs, it’s highly unlikely. They’re probably hiding in places you can’t see.
Getting Rid of Bed Bugs
Since spiders will almost never catch enough bed bugs to demolish the infestation, you need to have another plan in place. You’ll need to clean all your bedding and curtains in hot water, vacuum the carpet if you have it, and scrub your mattress to ensure you’re removing any seeds the bed bugs have laid.
RELATED: Do Spiders Remember You? (Yikes!)
If you find that your mattress is infested, you’ll need to dispose of it and get a brand new one. You can always call your local pest control for assistance if your efforts aren’t working.
There are thousands of spider species, and some of those will eat bed bugs. Your common household spider may ward off common household pests, but they’re not the best at taking care of bed bugs that have found a home in your bedroom.
On the other hand, there are a handful of larger spiders that often hunt bed bugs. So whether spiders eat bed bugs or not solely depends on the species of spider.