Do Spiders Eat Mosquitoes? We all know that spiders eat a wide range of flying insects, from flies, wasps, and even ladybugs ’if given the chance’ So surely they would love to snack on a few pesky mosquitoes, right?
Yes, some spiders do feast on mosquitoes! In fact, in east Africa and Malaysia, there are reports of a certain jumping spider called “Evarcha Culicivora” also known as the “Vampire Spider has adapted to hunt female Anopheles mosquitoes that transmit malaria parasites.
Additionally, mosquitoes are a good source of protein for vampire spiders as they suck the blood getting the name the vampire spider. However, this type of jumping spider is only found around Lake Victoria in east Africa!
Other Spiders That Eat Mosquitoes
Of course, it’s not just jumping spiders that eat mosquitoes, there are other spiders! In fact, it’s very common for mosquitoes to get trapped in spider webs, and like flies, the spider will pounce on it and eat it.
The most common type of spiders that eat mosquitoes are as followed:
- House Spiders
- Black Widow
- Yellow sac spider
- Orb weaver spiders
So as you can see, there are plenty of spiders that will happily feast on mosquitoes. But, most of these species are known to build webs or live in areas where there is a high density of mosquitoes.
How Do Spiders Catch And Eat Mosquitoes?
Each spider has different techniques for catching and eating mosquitoes. Most spiders that build webs will wait for their prey to become entangled in the web before pouncing.
Once the prey is immobilized, the spider will usually wrap it up and save it for later, or eat it there then, depending on how hungry the spider is.
Other spiders like jumping spiders that live in burrows use their vision to help them hunt. They will carefully hunt and stalk their prey until they are close enough to pounce on them, at which point they paralyze the mosquito with their venom!
Are They Healthy For Spiders?
Mosquitoes can actually be a good source of protein for small spiders and provide them with the nutrients they need to survive and help them to grow.
However, larger spiders like tarantulas wouldn’t survive on a diet of just mosquitoes as they need more nutrients to give them enough energy for their molt cycles.
How Often Will Spiders Eat Mosquitoes?
This will depend on the type of spider and how big it is. Take jumping spiders, for example, they will eat around 20% of their body weight every day. So, if a jumping spider weighs in at 0.35 grams, it would need to eat around 0.07 grams of mosquitoes each day to survive.
That’s not a lot of mosquitoes! A small sheet web spider might build its web near a light bulb or window and can catch mosquitoes!
These spiders usually eat one or two mosquitoes every other day. Surprisingly it’s the “Evarcha Culicivora” jumping spider that eats the most mosquitoes!
Can You Feed Mosquitoes To Your Pet Spider?
Most pet spiders are tarantulas which means feeding your spider a diet of mosquitoes isn’t going to do much for nutrition.
Tarantulas are one of the largest types of spiders in the world and some can grow between 4 to 5 inches! However, because of their size, these spiders tend to go after larger prey like mealworms, roaches, and crickets, not mosquitoes!
Mosquitoes unfortunately wouldn’t provide them with the right nourishment they need to survive.
Of course, you can give them one and see if they eat it! Just make sure you throw in a cricket or two to make sure they are getting enough nutrients.
If you have a smaller spider again you can try and feed them a mosquito but if they are not custom to eating them they probably won’t be that interested.
Generally, it’s best to stick to feeding your pet spider insects that will ensure they are getting the right nutrients they need to survive.
Can Spiders Be Used To Control The Mosquito Population
The use of spiders to control the mosquito population is not a new idea. In fact, it was first discovered in 2010, when the Sindh region of Pakistan was devastated by floods. As the waters rose, thousands of people were forced to flee to higher ground.
Trees became a sanctuary for many animals, including spiders. The sheer number of spiders in the trees had a significant effect on the local mosquito population.
Mosquitoes are known to carry diseases such as malaria, making them a serious threat to human health. However, the spiders’ presence helped to reduce the mosquito population and minimize the spread of disease.
So, while it’s true that some spiders do eat mosquitoes, there are many factors that determine whether or not a particular spider will make mosquitoes part of its diet.
As a result, if you live in a place where jumping spiders are not very common relying on spiders to help control the mosquito population is unlikely to be effective.
Of course, you will need a lot of spiders and you don’t want them taking over your home so it’s important to find the right balance. A few spiders here and there will help to keep the mosquito population down without being too much of a nuisance.
So there you have it! Spiders are fascinating creatures that can actually be helpful around the house by eating pesky insects like mosquitoes.
So, if you live in an area where mosquitoes are becoming a problem and you’re looking for a natural way to reduce their population add some spiders around your home.
Just make sure to take steps to keep them out of your living space!