Rainy season brings out more spiders

CHANDLER, AZ - The monsoon rains do a whole lot more than make the desert grow.

They also bring out a whole host of creatures many of us would rather not deal with.

Maybe you've seen more mosquitos around your house, but we're thinking of something different – spiders.

Really BIG wolf spiders!

We caught up with one woman who had never seen one in her life and is now dealing with them at her home.

Joni Smith found the unwanted creatures around her Chandler home.

"He was the size of my palm," Smith says.

She was describing a wolf spider.

"I was getting ready to step out and happened to look in the corner there, the plastic, and there was this humongous spider. I didn't know what it was, so I immediately went in and shut the door," Smith said.

She found three wolf spiders in three weeks.

Paula Swanson with the Phoenix Zoo said we could be seeing more of the spiders if we get a heavy rain and their burrows get flooded.

"They're going to get washed out of their home and they're going to be out looking for a new place to live or looking for a drier area," Swanson said.

Swanson says many people mistake wolf spiders for the more dangerous brown recluse.

The brown recluse spider can be identified by a "violin" shape on the top of its head, and it tends to stay more hidden in out-of-the-way places.

In spite of the fear factor, spiders do actually help around the house.

"Scorpions love to eat crickets and I've had people tell me that if they have a lot of spiders around, they see fewer scorpions and I think the spiders will actually feed on the scorpions as well," Smith explained.

But for Joni, she says the best she can do is make peace with the spiders.

"OK, you stay there and I'll stay here and don't come in the house," she rationalizes.

Bottom line, be careful when grabbing items that have been stored where spiders might want to nest, and keep areas around your home clutter free.

Call an exterminator if you feel you might have a bigger pest problem.

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