Big, Invasive Parachuting Spiders Will Begin To Cover Entire East Coast, Experts Say


Scientists have revealed that big, invasive, parachuting Joro spiders are set to invade the East Coast of America.

This news is not for the faint-hearted, and certainly not for those with arachnophobia.

A study by a group of University of Georgia scientists has discovered that the East Coast – and particularly Georgia – will see an influx in a group of spiders known as Trichonephila clavata, or as they’re known in Korea, China, and Taiwan, the Joro spider.

The three-inch-long arthropods originate from Japan and are first thought to have come to Georgia in around 2013 or 2014.

The spiders are expected to continue spreading out from Georgia to the entirety of the East Coast because of their ability to be able to survive colder temperatures, CBS reports.

‘So in our experiment, we exposed them to a brief period of cold only for a couple of minutes at below-freezing temperatures and most of the Joros did just fine,’ co-author of the study, Andy Davis, reflected.

The Joro will also be able to rain down over the East Coast and ride the wind by using their webs like parachutes, researchers discovered. As per The Independent, the spiders can reportedly travel up to 100 miles using this technique.

An undergraduate at Odum School of Ecology, University of Georgia, and another co-author of the study, Benjamin Frick, explained how quickly the spiders are set to multiply given how they have ‘no predators’ on the East Coast.

He said: ‘No predators, it doesn’t have anything that’s controlling its population size in the new habitat, but it has perfect conditions to spread.

‘We had a Joro being found in Oklahoma, we tracked the person who made the observation and it turned out it was a student from here’, Davis noted.

To reassure members of the public, researchers explained how it is rare to get bitten by one of the intimidating spiders.

‘Its fangs are so small relative to most human skin that it probably won’t be able to get its fangs into you even if it wanted to,’ Frick commented.

If you were unfortunate enough to get bitten, you reportedly wouldn’t need medical attention as the amount of venom is tiny.

The group of spiders are known for their ability to create beautiful wheel-shaped webs, according to the Associated Press.

You can keep an eye out for the influx in parachuting spiders around late spring, early summer (May and early June). Although you’ll have to wait until Autumn to see the biggest webs which are made by the group’s female spiders, who are identifiable by their bright blue, red, and yellow markings.

While some reacted to the news in disgust, Nancy Hinkle, an entomologist at the University of Georgia, noted the power spiders have to help protect crops.

She said: ‘This is wonderful. This is exciting. Spiders are our friends. They are out there catching all the pests we don’t want around our home.’

The study was published in Physiological Entomology.