Kukulcania Hibernalis – Southern House Spider

Kukulcania hibernalis, the Southern House Spider is a large brown spider that can be found throughout the Southern United States, Central and South America and the Caribbean.

Southern House Spider Description

The southern house spider has a dark brown body and legs. Due to its size and coloration, the southern house spider is often mistaken for the more dangerous brown recluse spider. However, the southern house spider does not have the iconic violin shaped pattern on its back like the brown recluse does.

Kukulcania Hibernalis - Southern House Spider
The southern house spider. Photography by: Colin Gillis – Marietta, Georgia

Also, the abdomen of the southern house spider is covered with fine hairs.

Size

Both male and female southern house spiders are about the same size. Including their legs, they can grow up to two inches (5 cm).

A Southern House Spider found by Adam in South Carolina
A Southern House Spider found by Adam in Conway, South Carolina

Web

The southern house spider is part of the family Filistatidae, commonly called crevice weavers. Instead of spinning webs in the open, they build their webs in crevices in the ground. The female southern house spider is hardly ever seen since it spends most of its life inside the crevices.

Bite

The bite of the southern house spider does not have any dangerous effects for humans or larger pets. It may cause some local swelling and minor localized pain.

Kukulcania hibernalis scientific classification

  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Arthropoda
  • Subphylum: Chelicerata
  • Class: Arachnida
  • Order: Araneae
  • Infraorder: Araneomorphae
  • Family: Filistatidae
  • Genus: Kukulcania
  • Species: Kukulcania hibernalis

Kukulcania hibernalis Distribution in the US

Kukulcania Hibernalis – Southern House Spider range

As its name suggests, the Southern House Spider occurs in the Southern states of the US as well as in Central and South America. In the US, the Southern House spider can be found in the following states: Alabama, Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia.

Kukulcania Hibernalis – Southern House Spider

40 thoughts on “Kukulcania Hibernalis – Southern House Spider

    1. Hi, if you only see one spider, you can just try to catch it with a paper and a glass jar and get it outside. If you have a larger number of spiders inside your house, you can try to get rid of them with a natural peppermint repellent (see information here: Peppermint Oil Spray for Spiders).

  1. Hello, I have two spiders outside my bedroom window that looks like the southern house spider I don’t know, however they have made webs like funnels. They are about 2 inches in size and they are either dark dark brown or black with hair. Any ideas about what they are ?

    1. Hi Stacey, do you have a picture of your spiders? If yes, you can upload it here directly to the comment and we can have a look. It’s more likely some kind of trap-door spider or a funnel weaver since Southern house spiders hardly ever spin their webs in the open.
      Thanks
      USAspiders

  2. My daughter noticed this spider today in between the window panes. Its big and fast. I think that this is southern house spider and will feel better with confirmation if possible. I have never seen this spider before, and i can’t get anyone to go near it to help remove it.

  3. I have found of these spiders in my car after putting 4 bombs in it for roaches. Can you tell me what they are?

    1. Hello Alicia, thanks for getting in touch. These are indeed southern house spiders – they are not medically significant but I wouldn’t want one crawling up on me while driving the car 🙂 Maybe you can try spraying some peppermint oil inside the car. That makes a fresh smell for humans but spiders absolutely hate it.

    1. I had one of those yesterday and tried my hand at identifying the species today. Yours and mine seem to be a Black Trapdoor Spider native to Texas and all Southern US. Scientific name is Eucteniza Relata

  4. Saw this interesting spider today near (and later inside) a small hole (about 1/2” diameter) in wall in my garage here in Santa Fe, NM. There’s a messy web on nearby objects. Spider seems to be all dark brown, and entire body appears to be smooth, not hairy. Shape is very similar to Southern House Spider, but no light colored patches where legs meet cephalothorax. Its wrapped-up meal (below spider in photo) is about 1-1/4” long, so I’m guessing the spider is about 2-1/2” long (including legs). Any ideas on ID? Thanks very much!

    1. My mom has the same spider living in her house in Central TX. We can’t identify her either. She has a web that funnels to the back on the upper curtain rod, it faces downwards. Sure would like to identify her. We’ve grown attached to her.

  5. Found in my underwear drawer! He looked common, just a brown spider, but oddly not….
    Lafayette, CA
    Charlotte

  6. Hi, I have around 5 of these sacs outside in my patio. I’m guessing spider, but not sure. Haven’t seen the spider though. What can I do to get rid of them??

    1. I just found this spider playing on its back playing “dead” on my laundry basket after taking my sweatshirt off. When I went to pick it up with tweezers I then realized that it was still alive which of course scared me have them I killed it. I’m trying to figure what type of spider it is. I live in Beaufort, South Carolina, a far as location goes and we’ve just had a cold spell that had made our process temps in the mid to lower 30 degrees fht. Below is a few pics, please tell me what it is and if it’s poisonous.

  7. I live in Havelock, NC and was wondering what kind of spider this was cause I couldn’t tell if the line on the back was a marking out just he body shape

    1. Hello Brenda, thanks for getting in touch! This is definitely a male southern house spider (Kukulcania hibernalis). The line on the back is actually the front of the spider. Male southern house spiders have two long and straight pedipalps, unlike most other spiders.
      They are often confused with brown recluse spiders as their legs and abdomen (the darker backside) look almost identical to brown recluses.

  8. Wilmington NC
    Not sure what type of spider this is? Looks like it has white on legs where they connect at the body.

    Southern house spider Kukulcania hibernalis large brown and black spider with white leg bands found by Kevin in Wilmington South Carolina

  9. Found him in my room and have never seen one of these before, when I went to grab it and take it outside it like “fainted” idk if that’s the right way to describe that but it like leaned over completely acting like it was dying. Kinda freaked me out ngl…

  10. Found 2 in the last week in my house .. this one has been dead a few hours after I sprayed it. What kind of spider is it?

  11. sorry the picture is a little blurry. i can’t find any thing on google that looks like this at all. found inside in western north carolina

  12. Found this in a box of shells with a messy web all over and also inside an unused bike helmet. House spider or other?

    Thank you

  13. Found several in a home located in North Carolina. Nearly the size of tarantula and doesn’t match the coloration of a wolf spider. Picture doesn’t give much in the way of size but body was larger than pack of cigarettes. Was bigger than a man’s hand with fully extended legs.

  14. This was found in South Texas in a building with open spaces that come inside. It was walking across the floor with no worries lol. I caught it in a bin. Body approx size of a quarter. Length from back leg to front approximately 3 1/2- 4 inches, and about 2 1/2 inches wide. I couldn’t get a face shot as it was scared and trying to run away. We are very flat land grassy cattle country here. Lots of oaks and I let it go on the firewood stack. It would have filled up my palm. Can’t seem to find this guy in any identifying sites so far.

  15. We found this huge spider in our yard while digging up some rocks. We live in middle Tennessee. Does anyone know what kind of spider it is? I can’t seem to locate a picture of a spider with that stripe on its thorax.

  16. I began volunteering at a do key sanctuary recently and found what I think are the remains of a huge southern house spider. What caught my attention, was that in the center of what was the body there is something that was super reflective like a rhinestone.

    I took a wobbly video and pictures as I was leaning over a burro. This is a picture

    1. Hi Angela, thanks for sharing your find! This is the exoskeleton of a southern house spider. As they mature, spiders shed their skin several times before reaching adulthood. So the spider in your case may still be alive.

  17. Have this guy running around the living room. From answering your questions I’m pretty sure it’s a Southern House Spider. We live in Florida! This is probably #3. Scooted the others outside. Not fun when they sneak up on you but I do t like to kill them.

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