15 Largest spiders in the world

Table of Contents

Introduction:

Spiders are fascinating creatures that come in all shapes and sizes, but some of the largest spiders in the world can be truly awe-inspiring. From tarantulas to bird-eating spiders, these arachnids can grow to impressive sizes, and their size and appearance can be both terrifying and intriguing. 

In this blog post, we will take a closer look at the 15 largest spiders in the world. We’ll explore their physical characteristics, habitats, and behaviors, and we’ll also take a look at the myths and misconceptions that often surround these fascinating creatures. Whether you’re an arachnophobe or a spider enthusiast, this post will offer a glimpse into the world of the largest spiders on the planet. So, get ready to be amazed and perhaps a little bit scared as we delve into the world of giant arachnids.

1. Goliath Birdeater (Theraphosa blondi):

The Goliath Birdeater is the largest spider in the world by mass and size. It is native to the rainforests of South America and is known for its impressive size and fearsome appearance.

Appearance and Size:

The Goliath Birdeater is a massive tarantula with a brown and black hairy body that can reach up to 11 inches in leg span, and its legs can be the size of a human adult’s hand. They have distinctive fangs that can grow up to 1 inch in length. The Goliath Birdeater is the largest spider in the world by mass and size. It can have a leg span of up to 30 cm (12 in).

Weight and habitat:

The Goliath Birdeater can weigh up to 170 g (6 oz), making it the heaviest spider in the world. Despite its large size, it is not considered to be dangerous to humans, and its venom is relatively mild. It typically lives in burrows in the ground and can also be found in trees and other foliage. It prefers humid and warm environments.

Distribution and lifespan:

The Goliath Birdeater is native to the rainforests of South America, including Brazil, Venezuela, and Suriname. It is typically found in rainforests and other humid habitats in these regions and is sometimes kept in captivity as a pet or for educational purposes. The Goliath Birdeater has a relatively long lifespan for a spider, with females living up to 15-25 years and males living up to 3-6 years. The lifespan of the spider is affected by various factors such as environmental conditions, diet, and genetics.

2. Huntsman spider (Heteropoda maxima):

The Huntsman spider, also known as Heteropoda maxima, is a large spider species found in tropical and subtropical regions around the world. It is known for its impressive size and unique appearance.

Appearance and Size:

The Huntsman spider can grow up to 30 cm in leg span and has a flattened body shape that helps it hide in narrow crevices. Its body is covered in brown, gray, or tan hair. The Huntsman spider is one of the largest spider species in the world, with a leg span that can reach up to 30 cm (12 inches). Their body length is around 2-3 cm (0.8-1.2 inches).

Weight and Habitat:

It is difficult to measure the weight of a Huntsman spider due to its size and shape, but they are relatively lightweight compared to its large size, typically weighing less than an ounce. Huntsman spiders can be found in various habitats, including forests, woodlands, and gardens in tropical and subtropical regions worldwide. They tend to hide in crevices during the day and hunt at night.

Distribution and Lifespan:

Huntsman spiders are found in tropical and subtropical regions around the world, including Asia, Australia, Africa, and the Americas. They are especially common in Australia, where several species are endemic. The lifespan of Huntsman spiders varies by species and gender, but they generally live for about 1-2 years. Males typically have shorter lifespans than females, as they die shortly after mating.

3. Brazilian Wandering Spider (Phoneutria nigriventer):

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The Brazilian Wandering Spider is a venomous spider native to Central and South America. It is known for its aggressive behavior, potent venom, and ability to wander into human settlements, making it a potential threat to human

Appearance and Size:

The Brazilian Wandering Spider is typically brown or tan in color and has a distinctive leg span that can reach up to 15 cm (6 inches) in length. It has large, powerful fangs and a cephalothorax that is flat and broad in shape. The spider’s appearance can vary somewhat depending on the specific species. The size of the Brazilian Wandering Spider can vary somewhat depending on the specific species, but generally, it has a leg span that can reach up to 15 cm (6 inches) in length. The body of the spider is relatively large compared to other spiders, and it has long, powerful legs that allow it to move quickly and easily.

Weight and Habitat:

The weight of the Brazilian Wandering Spider can vary depending on the specific species and gender, but generally, it is not as heavy as the Goliath Birdeater. Females of some species can weigh up to 1.3 g (0.05 oz), while males are typically smaller and lighter. The Brazilian Wandering Spider is found in a variety of habitats throughout Central and South America, including rainforests, savannas, and grasslands. It is a ground-dwelling spider and can often be found hiding in crevices or under debris. It can also be found in urban areas, such as houses or gardens.

Distribution and Lifespan:

The Brazilian Wandering Spider is found primarily in Central and South America, including countries such as Brazil, Costa Rica, and Peru. It is considered to be one of the most venomous spiders in the world and is a potential threat to humans who come into contact with it. The lifespan of the Brazilian Wandering Spider can vary depending on the specific species, but in general, it is relatively short, with males typically living only a few months and females living up to two years. The lifespan of the spider can be affected by various factors such as environmental conditions, diet, and genetics.

4. Camel spider (Solifugae):

The Camel spider, also known as Solifugae, is a group of arachnids that are found in warm, dry regions around the world. They are known for their unique appearance, aggressive behavior, and fast-running speed.

Appearance and Size:

The Camel spider has a distinct appearance, with a large, flat cephalothorax and a segmented, elongated abdomen. It has powerful jaws and large, bristly legs that it uses to move quickly across the ground. Some species can grow up to 15 cm (6 inches) in length. The size of the Camel spider can vary depending on the specific species, but in general, they are relatively large arachnids, with some species growing up to 15 cm (6 inches) in length. They have a flat cephalothorax and elongated abdomen, and their large, bristly legs make them appear even larger.

Weight and Habitat:

The weight of the Camel spider can vary depending on the specific species, but in general, they are relatively lightweight arachnids. Some of the larger species may weigh up to a few ounces, but most species are much lighter. Camel spiders are found in warm, dry regions around the world, including deserts, scrublands, and grasslands. They are typically ground-dwelling arachnids, although some species are known to climb trees or live in caves. Camel spiders are adapted to survive in arid environments and can tolerate high temperatures and low humidity. You can also get to know about the 5 deadliest spiders in the world here.

Distribution and Lifespan:

Camel spiders are found in warm, dry regions around the world, including the Middle East, North Africa, Southwest Asia, and the southwestern United States. They are most commonly found in desert and arid regions but can also be found in other warm, dry habitats. The lifespan of the Camel spider can vary depending on the specific species and environmental conditions, but in general, they are relatively short-lived arachnids, with most species living only a few years at most. Some species may live for only a few months or less.

5. Golden Orb Weaver (Nephila clavipes):

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The Golden Orb Weaver is a large spider species found in warmer regions around the world. They are known for their striking appearance and impressive web-building abilities.

Appearance and Size:

The Golden Orb Weaver spider is a large and striking arachnid, with females growing up to 5 cm (2 inches) in body length and males being much smaller. They are known for their distinctive golden silk, which they use to construct large webs that can reach up to 1.5 meters (5 feet) in diameter. The Golden Orb Weaver spider is a relatively large arachnid, with females growing up to 5 cm (2 inches) in body length and males being much smaller. They are constructing large webs that can reach up to 1.5 meters (5 feet) in diameter.

Weight and Habitat:

The weight of the Golden Orb Weaver spider can vary depending on the specific individual and its life stage, but in general, they are relatively lightweight arachnids. Females may weigh up to a few grams, while males are typically much lighter. They prefer areas with tall trees or other structures on which to build their large webs. They are commonly found in forests, woodlands, and gardens, and are also known to inhabit urban areas.

Distribution and Lifespan:

The Golden Orb Weaver spider has a wide distribution, being found in warmer regions around the world, including Asia, Africa, Australia, and the Americas. Within these regions, they are typically found in areas with tall trees or other structures on which to build their large webs, such as forests, woodlands, and gardens. The lifespan of the Golden Orb Weaver spider can vary depending on the specific individual and environmental conditions, but in general, they live for around 1-2 years. Males typically have shorter lifespans than females, as they often die after mating.

6. Giant Crab Spider (Sparassidae):

The Giant Crab Spider, also known as Sparassidae, is a family of arachnids that includes some of the largest spider species in the world. They are known for their impressive hunting abilities and unique appearance.

Appearance and Size:

The Giant Crab Spider has a unique appearance, with a flattened body and long legs that give it a crab-like appearance. They are typically brown or gray in color and have distinctive eye patterns. Some species have a large, hairy bodies that can measure up to several inches in length. The size of the Giant Crab Spider can vary depending on the specific species, but they are generally considered to be large spiders. Some species can have a leg span of up to 12 inches, making them some of the largest spiders in the world.

Weight and Habitat:

The weight of the Giant Crab Spider can also vary depending on the specific species, but they are generally considered to be lightweight for their size. Most species weigh only a few grams, with the largest species weighing up to several dozen grams. The Giant Crab Spider can be found in a variety of habitats, including forests, deserts, and grasslands. They are typically found in warm climates and can be found on every continent except Antarctica.

Distribution and Lifespan:

The Giant Crab Spider is found worldwide, with the largest variety of species found in tropical regions. They are commonly found in Africa, Asia, and Australia, but can also be found in North and South America. The lifespan of the Giant Crab Spider varies depending on the specific species, but most live for around one to two years. Some species have been known to live up to five years in captivity.

7. Six-Spotted Fishing Spider (Dolomedes triton):

The Six-Spotted Fishing Spider is a species of spider found in North America. It is known for its unique hunting method and impressive size.

Appearance and Size:

The Six-Spotted Fishing Spider has a brownish-gray body with six distinct white spots on its back. It has long legs and can measure up to three inches in length. The Six-Spotted Fishing Spider is a relatively large spider, with females typically measuring around 1.5 inches in length, and males slightly smaller at around 1 inch.

Weight and Habitat:

The Six-Spotted Fishing Spider typically weighs around 0.5 grams to 1 gram, which is about the weight of a paper clip. The Six-Spotted Fishing Spider is commonly found near bodies of water such as streams, ponds, and wetlands, where it can hunt for prey both in and out of the water. They prefer areas with vegetation and rocks for shelter.

Distribution and Lifespan:

The Six-Spotted Fishing Spider is native to North America and can be found throughout the eastern United States and parts of Canada. They are commonly found in the Great Lakes region, the Mississippi River basin, and the Appalachian Mountains. The lifespan of the Six-Spotted Fishing Spider is around 1-2 years, with males living shorter than females.

8. Wolf Spider (Lycosidae):

The Wolf Spider is also included in the list of 15 largest spiders in the world family of ground-dwelling spiders known for their hunting prowess and impressive speed. They are found all over the world and have unique characteristics that make them easily identifiable.

Appearance and Size:

Wolf spiders have brown or grayish-brown coloration with some species having distinctive markings or patterns on their bodies. They have eight eyes arranged in three rows. Wolf spiders vary in size depending on the species, but typically they range from 0.4 to 1.6 inches (10 to 40 millimeters) in body length.

Weight and Habitat:

Wolf spiders can range in weight from around 0.1 grams to 2 grams depending on the species and gender. Wolf spiders are found in a variety of habitats including forests, grasslands, deserts, and wetlands. They can be found under rocks, logs, and other debris, or in burrows that they have dug.

Distribution and Lifespan:

Wolf spiders are found throughout the world, except for the polar regions. They are particularly diverse in the tropics and can be found in a variety of habitats, including grasslands, forests, deserts, and wetlands. The lifespan of a wolf spider can vary depending on the species and environmental conditions, but on average they live for around 1-2 years.

9. Sydney Funnel-Web Spider:

The Sydney Funnel-Web Spider (Atrax robustus) is a highly venomous spider native to Australia. It is considered one of the most dangerous spiders in the world.

Appearance and Size:

The Sydney Funnel-Web Spider has a large and robust body, with shiny dark brown to black coloring, and measures up to 5 cm in body length. Its fangs are large and strong. Sydney Funnel-Web Spiders are considered to be medium to large-sized spiders, with males typically measuring about 1-2 inches (25-50 mm) in body length and females ranging from 1.5 to 2.5 inches (40-65 mm).

Weight and Habitat:

The Sydney Funnel-Web Spider can weigh up to 1.5 ounces or 42 grams. However, males are usually smaller and lighter than females. Sydney Funnel-Web spiders prefer moist habitats such as rainforests and wet sclerophyll forests, but they can also be found in suburban areas around Sydney. They often build their burrows in moist soil or leaf litter, and sometimes under rocks or logs.

Distribution and Lifespan:

The Sydney Funnel-Web Spider is found in eastern Australia, primarily in New South Wales. Its distribution also extends to parts of Queensland, Victoria, and the Australian Capital Territory. The lifespan of the Sydney Funnel-Web Spider is around 1-2 years for males and up to 5 years for females.

10. Tarantula (Theraphosidae):

Tarantulas are a family of large, hairy spiders belonging to the Theraphosidae family. They are found in many parts of the world and are known for their impressive size and striking appearance.

Appearance and Size:

Being the 10th largest spiders in the world, Tarantulas have large, hairy bodies, eight legs, and two fangs. They come in a variety of colors and patterns, ranging from brown and black to vibrant blues and greens. The size of tarantulas varies greatly depending on the species, with some measuring only a few centimeters and others growing up to 30 centimeters. On average, they have a leg span of 10-12 inches.

Weight and Habitat:

The weight of tarantulas also varies depending on the species, with some weighing only a few grams and others weighing up to several ounces. On average, they weigh between 20-30 grams. Tarantulas can be found in a variety of habitats including deserts, rainforests, grasslands, and scrublands. They typically make their homes in burrows or crevices in the ground or trees.

Distribution and Lifespan:

Tarantulas are found in many parts of the world, including the Americas, Africa, Asia, and Australia. They are the most diverse in the Americas, where over 900 species have been identified. The lifespan of tarantulas varies depending on the species and gender, with females generally living longer than males. On average, they can live for 10-25 years in captivity and up to 30 years in the wild.

11. Brown Huntsman Spider (Heteropoda venatoria):

The Brown Huntsman Spider is a large, fast-moving spider found in many parts of the world, including Asia, Africa, and Australia. It is known for its distinctive flattened body shape and ability to hunt prey both on the ground and in trees.

Appearance and Size:

The Brown Huntsman Spider has a flattened body shape with long, spindly legs that can span up to 15 centimeters. Its coloration can vary from light brown to dark grey, with a distinctive pattern of spots and stripes on its abdomen.

The size of the Brown Huntsman Spider can vary depending on the region, but they generally have a leg span of 10-15 centimeters. Females tend to be larger than males.

Weight and Habitat:

The weight of the Brown Huntsman Spider varies depending on the individual, but they typically weigh between 1-5 grams. Females are generally heavier than males. The Brown Huntsman Spider can be found in a variety of habitats, including forests, savannas, and urban areas. They are often found in trees and bushes, but can also be found on the ground or in homes and buildings.

Distribution and Lifespan:

The Brown Huntsman Spider has a wide distribution and can be found in many parts of the world, including Asia, Africa, and Australia. It has also been introduced to other regions, such as the United States and the Caribbean. The lifespan of the Brown Huntsman Spider varies depending on the species and gender, with females generally living longer than males. On average, they can live for 2-3 years in captivity and up to 1-2 years in the wild.

12. Mouse Spider (Missulena spp.):

The Mouse Spider is a group of spiders found in Australia. They are named for their mouse-like appearance and can be venomous, with bites causing severe pain and other symptoms.

Appearance and Size:

The Mouse Spider has a robust, dark-colored body, with males measuring up to 25mm and females up to 35mm. They have large, fang-like chelicerae and their color can range from black to brown or even blue. The size of the Mouse Spider can vary depending on the species, with males typically measuring 20-25mm and females measuring 25-35mm in body length. Their leg span can be up to 75mm.

Weight and Habitat:

The weight of the Mouse Spider varies depending on the individual and species, but they typically weigh between 1-3 grams. Females are generally heavier than males. The Mouse Spider can be found in a variety of habitats in Australia, including forests, grasslands, and deserts. They typically live in burrows in the ground, but can also be found in leaf litter or under rocks.

Distribution and Lifespan:

The Mouse Spider is found exclusively in Australia, with species distributed throughout the country. They are most commonly found in the southern and eastern parts of Australia. The lifespan of the Mouse Spider varies depending on the species and gender, with females generally living longer than males. On average, they can live for 1-2 years in captivity and up to several years in the wild.

13. Yellow Sac Spider (Cheiracanthium spp.):

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The Yellow Sac Spider is a small, pale yellow spider that is commonly found in North and South America. It is known for its ability to produce a venomous bite that can cause mild to moderate pain and swelling.

Appearance and Size:

The Yellow Sac Spider has a pale yellow to light beige body with a compact shape and spiny legs. The Yellow Sac Spider is typically small in size, with adults measuring between 5 and 10 mm in length. Females are generally larger than males.

Weight and Habitat:

The weight of a Yellow Sac Spider is very light, typically less than 1 gram. Their weight can vary depending on their size and gender. The Yellow Sac Spider can be found in a variety of habitats including fields, forests, gardens, and homes. They typically construct their sac-like webs in protected areas such as foliage or crevices.

Distribution and Lifespan:

The Yellow Sac Spider is primarily found in North and South America, including the United States, Canada, Mexico, and parts of South America. They have also been introduced to some parts of Europe and Asia. The lifespan of a Yellow Sac Spider is typically one year or less, with most individuals living for only a few months. However, some females may live for up to 2 years in optimal conditions.

14. Black Widow Spider (Latrodectus spp.):

The Black Widow Spider is a venomous spider belonging to the Latrodectus genus. They are known for their distinctive black coloration and the red hourglass-shaped marking on their abdomen.

Appearance and Size:

The Black Widow Spider has a shiny black body with a round abdomen and long, slender legs. The female has a distinctive red hourglass-shaped marking on her abdomen, while the male has white or yellow markings on his back. The Black Widow Spider is typically small to medium-sized, with females ranging from 8 to 13 mm in body length and males ranging from 3 to 10 mm. Their legs can extend beyond their body length, making them appear larger.

Weight and Habitat:

The weight of a Black Widow Spider is very light, typically less than 1 gram. Their weight can vary depending on their size and gender. Black Widow Spiders can be found in a variety of habitats, including deserts, forests, and urban areas. They tend to prefer dark, sheltered areas such as woodpiles, crevices, and cluttered areas.

Distribution and Lifespan:

Black Widow Spiders are found throughout the world in temperate and tropical regions, including North and South America, Europe, Asia, and Africa. There are several species of Black Widow Spider, each with its own specific distribution range. The lifespan of a female Black Widow Spider can range from 1 to 3 years, while the lifespan of a male is typically shorter, around 1 year. Their lifespan can be influenced by factors such as temperature, humidity, and availability of food.

15. Spiny Orb Weaver (Gasteracantha spp.):

The Spiny Orb Weaver spider is a type of orb-weaving spider found in many parts of the world. They are known for their distinctive spiny appearance and the intricate circular webs they weave to catch their prey.

Appearance and Size:

The Spiny Orb Weaver spider has a small, oval-shaped body covered in sharp spines. They have long, thin legs and are typically brown or gray in color with white or yellow markings. The females are usually larger than the males. The size of the Spiny Orb Weaver spider can vary, but they are generally small to medium-sized with a body length of around 6-20 mm. The females are typically larger than the males.

Weight and Habitat:

The weight of a Spiny Orb Weaver spider is very light, typically less than 1 gram. Their weight can vary depending on their size and gender. The Spiny Orb Weaver spider can be found in a variety of habitats including gardens, fields, forests, and wetlands. They typically build their webs in sunny areas with vegetation such as tall grasses, shrubs, and trees.

Distribution and Lifespan:

Spiny Orb Weaver spiders are found in many parts of the world, including North and South America, Europe, Africa, and Asia. They have adapted to various environments and can be found in both tropical and temperate regions. The lifespan of the Spiny Orb Weaver spider varies between species, but most individuals live for around one year. Some species may live for up to two years in optimal conditions. The lifespan of the spider can also be influenced by factors such as temperature, humidity, and availability of food.

FAQs

Which country has the biggest spiders?

Australia is home to some of the largest spiders in the world, including the huntsman spider, the Sydney funnel-web spider, and the tarantula.

Is there a king of spiders?

The Goliath birdeater is one of the largest spiders in the world, with a weight of up to six ounces and a leg span of almost a foot. While it is not a bird-eating spider, it is capable of eating small birds, although it primarily feeds on insects, other spiders, and small mammals.

What is the deadliest spider?

The deadliest spider is the Sydney funnel-web spider, found in Australia. Its venom can cause serious illness or death if left untreated, although antivenom is available.

Conclusion:

In conclusion, the world of spiders is vast and varied, and the largest spiders in the world are no exception. From the massive Goliath birdeater to the impressive Huntsman spider, these arachnids are both fascinating and intimidating. While many people may be scared of these giant spiders, it’s important to remember that they play an important role in their respective ecosystems. By understanding and appreciating these creatures, we can gain a greater appreciation for the diversity of life on our planet. So, the next time you encounter a spider, take a moment to observe and appreciate its unique characteristics and contributions to our world.

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