Woodlouse Spider


Actual Size: 11 mm to 15 mm

Characteristics: Legs and bodies are reddish-orange and the abdomen is a dirty white color that looks like a bean.

Legs: 8

Habitat: Lives outdoors in gardens, bark, and underneath vegetation. Will access homes in the fall to seek warmth, constructing a saclike retreat wherever walls and ceilings meet.


  • Earns its name by building small tubes or sac-like nests.
  • They have a bite that is painful but does not have long-term side effects.
  • Often shipped in agricultural products such as grapes and can make its way into homes on produce.

Woodlouse Spiders in Houston, TX

Woodlouse spiders are commonly found in homes and gardens throughout Houston, TX. The spider gets its name from its prey, the woodlouse, also known as sowbugs, isopods, and roly-polies. It has long fangs and powerful jaws which are designed to pierce the tough armor of woodlice, their only prey. It kills its prey by reaching underneath the rolled-up creature and injecting venom.

Woodlouse Spider Habitat

Nocturnal creatures, woodlouse spiders prefer humid environments and are normally found in gardens, under rocks, or in the shade of logs. Instead of spinning webs, these spiders hunt at night and catch their prey with their forward-facing jaws after the sun goes down. Due to their preference for warm climates, they sometimes wander into homes and structures.

Woodlouse Spider Behaviors, Threats, or Dangers

The bite of a woodlouse spider is not harmful to humans. However, due to their mechanical fang penetration, there may be some pain but the effects are usually gone within an hour. They prefer rotting vegetation and wood and are most often found in basements, under stones and boards, around doors and windows, and other areas that contain rotting wood. Gardeners tend to welcome these arachnids in their yards, as they help them get rid of woodlice, which are notorious plant pests.

If you are dealing with excess woodlouse spiders, contact your local spider exterminators.