Haldimand-Norfolk Pest Control: The Natural Predators of Spiders

Predators of Spiders

Spiders have an important role to play in the ecosystem. On the one hand, they eat insect pests to control their population; on the other, they also provide food for larger animals. When spiders live in human homes, it could throw them off balance, and professional spider removal may be necessary. Here are some examples of predators that feed on spiders.


The internet seems fascinated by spiders that eat fish, perhaps because they defy expectations. It is more common for fish to eat spiders but much harder to find specific information about it online. Trout, archers, and mosquitofish are examples of fish species that may eat spiders.

Water spiders are most likely to end up as a meal for a fish. Fish can also eat spiders that don’t live on or near the water but accidentally fall in. These spiders aren’t adapted to the water and may not be able to escape it, making them easy prey for fish.


Lizards such as chameleons and geckos have an insatiable appetite for spiders. This isn’t a problem as long as both spiders and lizards are native to a particular area and there are natural checks in place to keep the lizards from completely eradicating the spiders. Unfortunately, there have been instances in which non-native lizards have been introduced into an environment for purposes of spider control. Instead of curbing the spider population, the invasive species completely eradicated them, which is not healthy for the ecosystem.

Snakes are another example of reptiles that eat spiders. Some reptiles catch spiders by ambushing them near their nesting places, while others actively hunt them.


Spiders aren’t insects, but birds can’t tell the difference between spiders and insects, and it wouldn’t matter to them if they could. Most birds that eat insects also eat spiders. The robin is one of the most common birds in North America, and it eats spiders on a regular basis. Bluebirds, sparrows, blackbirds, wrens, and crows are other examples of birds that eat spiders. There is a bird species called the great-tit that specifically hunts spiders to feed its babies.


Bats are unique among mammals for their ability to fly rather than merely glide. Most bat species feed on insects, and because bats hunt in the air, they usually end up eating flying insects. Spiders aren’t considered a significant part of a bat’s diet, but bats are known to feed on spiders occasionally. If it is in a web or hanging from a thread high above the ground, a bat can find it using echolocation as it does for insects. Bats can also swoop down and pick up spiders from the ground without landing. Both birds and bats have to be careful not to get caught in the spider’s web when trying to catch a meal. The spider may or may not eat them, but they can die from getting caught in the sticky web.

Other Spiders

Because of their predatory nature, sometimes spiders end up eating other spider species. Fortunately for homeowners, it is often the spider species that are harmless to humans that eat the species that can cause harm with their bites. For example, the black widow spider is a formidable predator with venom that can make people very sick, and rarely kill them, but it can fall prey to the daddy long-leg spider, which is innocuous.

Black widows are also among a handful of spider species known to practice sexual cannibalism, in which the female consumes the male after mating. However, this may not occur as often in the wild as it does under laboratory conditions.

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