Spiders in Oregon

Even just the sight or the thought of a spider triggers panic and nightmares for many people. Even though almost all spiders around the world are absolutely harmless. And that is even more true for spiders in Oregon. There are almost 1,000 different spider species found in the Pacific Northwest. This page provides and overview of the most common spiders in Oregon, gives you identification tips and helps you identify potentially dangerous spiders in Oregon.

So let’s dive right in:

Poisonous Spiders in Oregon

While technically almost all spider species in the world are considered venomous (not poisonous), there is only one single spider species in Oregon that is considered medically significant: the western black widow (Latrodectus hesperus).

Latrodectus hesperus Western black widow spider venomous spiders in the United States
The red hourglass-shape on the bottom of a western black widow.

The western black widow is a medium-sized spider with a large and round abdomen. The spider is almost completely black and shiny with a red-hourglass shape on the bottom of its abdomen. Some male and juvenile spiders also have red or white markings on their backs.

In Oregon, the black widow is rarely found in Portland and Northwestern Oregon. While black widows are generally a rare sight in Oregon, the majority of their population is found in Eastern Oregon, east of the Cascades Mountain Range and in Southwestern Oregon around Medford. While being very rare in the Northwest, black widows are sometimes also seen in the Portland area, more often in the Willamette Valley.

Many alleged sightings of black widows are actually similar-looking false black widows (Steatoda grossa). This spider has a similar shape and overall appearance but doesn’t have any red markings on its body. Sometimes, their overall body color appears brown-black or purple-black while the black widow’s primary color is dark black. Click below to learn more about the western black widow:

Latrodectus hesperus Western black widow spider venomous spiders in the United States

Latrodectus Hersperus – Western Black Widow

Latrodectus hesperus, the Western black widow spider is one of the few medically significant venomous spiders in the United States. As its common name suggests, it can be found in the Western States of the US as well as in Canada. Description of the Western Black Widow The larger female Western black widow looks very similar to the Northern black widow and the Southern black widow female. The best indicator ...
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What about the brown recluse in Oregon?

Potentially dangerous spiders have fascinated people and news outlets ever since they appeared. Most of us have heard or read stories of someone who allegedly saw a brown recluse in Oregon. And that is true for any U.S. State, regardless of how far out of the natural range that may be.

The truth is that the range of the infamous brown recluse is nowhere near the borders or Oregon. Recluse spiders prefer warm and arid habitats and the Chilean recluse spider can be found as far up north as San Francisco. And that is still a long way to Oregon.

So our answer is: No, you don’t need to worry about brown recluse spiders in Oregon. While very few sightings have been confirmed, those are individual cases or recluses having been imported on cargo or cars into the state. However, due to the climate conditions, they have failed (and will, for the foreseeable future) to establish a population.

Loxosceles reclusa - brown recluse spider full body picture

Loxosceles reclusa – Brown Recluse

The brown recluse, loxosceles reclusa, is one of the more dangerous spiders indigenous in the United States. While usually not life-threatening, a brown recluse bite might lead to severe skin damage. This page gives an overview of how to identify a brown recluse and in which states in the US it appears. The brown recluse compared to the size of a penny. Brown Recluse Description The brown recluse spider is ...
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What about the hobo spider?

Another myth about poisonous spiders in Oregon is the fact that the hobo spider (Eratigena agrestis) is deadly and aggressive. While this was popular belief up to around 30 years ago, it is now proven that hobo spiders do not pose a threat for humans or larger pets. At least no more than other harmless spiders. A bite might still cause some swellings and may be uncomfortable but it is unlikely to cause any serious harm.

While the hobo spider is very common around and in Oregon homes, there is also no evidence that it is any more aggressive than any other spider. Spiders are well aware that their tiny teeth (fangs) will not protect them from something like an approaching human. Therefore, they rather escape when we approach than attack. And that is true for the hobo spider as well.

You can read more about the hobo spider here:

Female Hobo Spider

Eratigena Agrestis – Hobo Spider

Eratigena agrestis, commonly know as the hobo spider, is a funnel web spider that can be found in the Pacific Northwest. In the 90ies, the hobo spider has been listed as a medically important species. However, over the last 30 years, no actual evidence has been found that the spider is actually dangerous for humans. In 2017, the CDC removed the hobo spider from its list of dangerous spiders. Hobo ...
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Common house spiders in Oregon

The giant house spider (Eratigena atrica) is the largest spider in Oregon. Adult females can reach a total leg span of up to 3 inches (75 mm). The giant house spider is the most common spider in and around homes in the Pacific Northwest. It is a close relative and look-alike of the hobo spider and therefore often mis-identified. The giant house spider is a large brown spider and often also confused with the common wolf spider in Oregon.

While the giant house spider, the wolf spider and the hobo spider are the largest spiders often found inside homes, most house spiders in Oregon are smaller and often live among us without us noticing them. Some spiders commonly found inside in Oregon are the gray house spider (Badumna longinqua), an invasive species imported from Australia (harmless, though), false widow spiders (Steatoda), the common house spider (Parasteatoda tepidariorum) as well as jumping spiders. You can scroll through the list below and click on any image or heading to learn more about each spider. Below you can find more images and information about Oregon spiders.

Eratigena atrica or duellica long legs brown size comparison with dollar

Eratigena Atrica – Giant House Spider

As its name suggests, the giant house spider, Eratigena atrica, is one of the largest spiders found in Europe and ...
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Gray House Spider - Badumna Longinqua information - Kopie

Gray House Spider – Badumna Longinqua

The gray house spider, Badmuna longinqua, is a medium sized black and gray spider originally native to Australia. It has ...
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Steatoda Grossa - Cupboard Spider or False black widow

Steatoda Grossa – False Black Widow Spider

The Steatoda grossa, commonly called the false black widow spider or cupboard spider can be found throughout the United States ...
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Female Hobo Spider

Eratigena Agrestis – Hobo Spider

Eratigena agrestis, commonly know as the hobo spider, is a funnel web spider that can be found in the Pacific ...
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Lycosidae wolf spider

Lycosidae – Wolf Spider

The Lycosidae, commonly called wolf spiders are a family of hunter spiders found throughout the United States and the rest ...
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Steatoda triangulosa triangulate cobweb spider picture

Steatoda Triangulosa – Triangulate Cobweb Spider

The Steatoda triangulosa, commonly called the triangulate cobweb spider is a brown-black spider found throughout the US. It has an ...
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Rabbit hutch spider

Steatoda Bipunctata – Rabbit Hutch Spider

The Steatoda bipunctata, commonly called rabbit hutch spider is a black spider found throughout the United States. It comes from ...
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Agelenopsis American grass spider

Agelenopsis – American Grass Spider

Agelenopsis, American grass spiders, are a genus of spiders that can be found around the world and in every US ...
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Pholcidae or Cellar Spider Photo

Pholcidae – Daddy Long-Legs or Cellar Spider

As strange as it sounds, the Pholcidae, or Cellar Spider is one of the most misunderstood spiders in the world ...
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Parasteatoda Tepidariorum the common house spider

Parasteatoda tepidariorum – The Common House Spider

Parasteatoda tepidariorum, or the common house spider can be found in every US state. The spider is also distributed throughout ...
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Jumping spiders

Jumping spiders are small to medium-sized spiders with the ability to jump. They are part of the spider family of Salticidae. There are almost 400 species of jumping spiders in the United States and many of them can also be found in Oregon. Jumping spiders are characterized by their large eyes and are spiders with excellent vision. They are able to clearly focus on nearby objects so that they can perfectly calculate their jumps. The most common jumping spiders in Oregon are the zebra jumping spider, the daring jumping spider and the red-backed jumping spider.

female red-backed jumping spider phidippus johnsoni black spider with short legs and red back

Phidippus Johnsoni – Red-Backed Jumping Spider

The red-backed jumping spider, Phidippus johnsoni, is found throughout the Western United States and Canada. The spider has a black ...
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Salticus Scenicus - Zebra Spider

Salticus Scenicus – Zebra Spider

Salticus scenicus, the zebra spider, is a jumping spider that can be found in the entire Northern Hemisphere. As its ...
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Daring Jumping Spider

Phidippus audax – Daring Jumping Spider

Phidippus audax, commonly known as the daring jumping spider is a jumping spider found throughout the USA. As their name ...
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Common Garden spiders and orb weavers found in Oregon

Especially in autumn, the gardens fill up with green, yellow, white and red spiders in Oregon. Some of them spin large orb-shaped webs to catch flying insects. These are orb weaver spiders. Other common garden spiders are crab spiders.

Arrowhead orb weaver Verrucosa arenata information

Verrucosa Arenata – Arrowhead Spider

The arrow-head spider, Verrucosa arenata, is an orb-weaver spider found throughout the United States. Its common name arrowhead spider or ...
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zygiella x-notata missing sector orb weaver information

Missing Sector Orb Weaver – Zygiella X-Notata

The missing sector orb weaver, Zygiella x-notata, is a common spider species found throughout Europe and the United States. The ...
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female acanthepeira stellata star bellied orb weaver

Acanthepeira Stellata – Starbellied Orb Weaver

Acanthepeira stellata, commonly called the starbellied orb weaver, is one of the most remarkable and memorable orb weaver spiders. Its ...
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Neoscona arabesca Arabesque orbweaver in the United States

Neoscona Arabesca – Arabesque Orb Weaver

Neoscona arabesca, commonly known as the arabesque orbweaver, is one of the most common orbweaver species that can be found ...
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Xysticus funestus deadly ground crab spider

Xysticus Funestus – Deadly Ground Crab Spider

Even though Xysticus funestus has a dangerously-sounding common name, the deadly ground crab spider, it is of absolutely no concern ...
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Araneus Trifolium - Shamrock Spider Picture

Araneus Trifolium – Shamrock Spider

Araneus trifolium, the shamrock spider, is a widely distributed orb weaver that can come in various colors, mostly beige or ...
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pachygnatha orb weaver Picture

Pachygnatha

The Pachygnatha is technically part of the Orb Weaver family. However, it does not spin a web and is a ...
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Xysticus - Ground Crab Spider

Xysticus – Ground Crab Spider

Spiders of the Xysticus genus, also called ground crab spiders are a rather indistinct species. As all crab spiders, they ...
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Larinioides Cornutus - furrow orb weaver

Larinioides Cornutus – Furrow Spider

Larinioides Cornutus, commonly known as the furrow spider, is an orb weaver species that can be found throughout the Northern ...
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Misumena Flower Crab Spider

Misumena – Flower Crab Spider

The misumena, commonly called flower crab spider, is a genus of spiders that hunt their prey in or around flowers ...
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Cat-faced orb weaver spider

Araneus Gemmoides – Cat-Faced Spider or Jewel Spider

The Araneus Gemmoides is an orb weaver species that occurs in the Western United States. It is also known under ...
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Arigope Trifasciata Spider

Argiope Trifasciata – Banded Garden Spider

The Argiope trifasciata or Banded Garden Spider is one of the most common species of the Argiope orb weaving spider ...
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Arigope Aurantia Spider

Argiope Aurantia – Black and Yellow Garden Spider

The Argiope Aurantia or black and yellow garden spider appears in every US state and in many other countries around ...
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Araneus diadematus - European Garden spider

Araneus diadematus – The European Garden Spider

Araneus diadematus, also called the European garden spider or the cross spider is an orb weaver spider with an iconic ...
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Other common spiders in Oregon

Large spiders found in Oregon are huntsman spiders, mouse spiders, which are found in eastern, central and southern Oregon as well as fishing spiders (Dolomedes sp.). Check out the images here to identify your spider and click to learn more:

Spider Identification Oregon

If you have found a spider in Oregon that is not on our list, or that you could not identify, check out our spider identification tool. Just answer a few questions and the tool will give you a few recommendations what spider you could be looking at. If that doesn’t help either, just submit a comment with a picture of your spider on our spider identification page and we will do our best to identify the Oregon spider for you – for free, of course. Check out the spider identification tool now.

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