Do Spiders Eat Mosquitoes?

  • By: Spiderplanet
  • Time to read: 5 min.

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, the African Evarcha Culicivora spider, known as the “vampire spider” has adapted to hunt female Anopheles mosquitoes.

Additionally, mosquitoes are a good source of protein for vampire spiders as they suck the blood that the mosquito has collected getting the name the vampire spider.

Do Jumping Spiders Eat Mosquitoes?

Jumping spiders are particularly fond of eating insects and mosquitoes are no exception. However, Jumping spiders don’t build webs like other types of spiders. Instead, they use their vision to help them hunt and stalk their prey.

When a jumping spider is ready to attack, it will first approach its prey slowly and carefully. Once it’s close enough, the spider will then quickly jump onto its prey immobilizing it.

Take Note: In east Africa and Malaysia there are reports of a certain jumping spider called “Evarcha culicivora” that has adapted to hunt female Anopheles mosquitoes that transmit malaria parasites

This type of jumping spider is only found around Lake Victoria in east Africa!

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Do Tarantulas Eat Mosquitoes?

Tarantulas are one of the largest types of spiders in the world. Some have a body size of 4.75 inches with a leg span of 11 inches (28 centimeters). And like the jumping spider, tarantulas don’t build webs to trap their prey, instead, they stalk.

However, because of their size, these spiders tend to go after larger prey like mealworms, roaches, crickets, and other invertebrates.

Mosquitoes unfortunately wouldn’t provide them with the right nourishment they need to survive.

But, what if there was no food except mosquitoes on the menu would they still eat them? If it was an easy catch and there was nothing else for the spider to eat then maybe!

However, the spider wouldn’t survive on just a diet of mosquitoes.

Types Of Spiders That Eat Mosquitoes?

Spiders that mainly eat mosquitoes are typically small in size and usually build catching webs. However, as before, there are some spiders that build funnels or live in burrows like the jumping spider that eat mosquitoes.

The most common type of spiders that eat mosquitoes are as followed:

  • Jumping Spider
  • Vampire Spider
  • Sheet Web Spider
  • Garden Spider
  • Orb-Web Spider

So there are some different types of spiders that will happily feast on mosquitoes. All of these spiders are known to build webs and/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 catching webs will wait for their prey to become entangled in the web before pouncing.

Once the prey is stuck, the spider will quickly wrap it up in silk and then bite it to inject venom, paralyzing it.

Other spiders like jumping spiders or those that live in burrows use their vision to help them hunt. They will carefully stalk their prey until they are close enough to pounce on them.

Once the venom from the bite paralyzes the mosquitoes the spider will either eat it there and then or save it for later.

Are They Healthy For Spiders?

Mosquitoes are actually a good source of protein for small spiders. They provide spiders 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 to grow and molt.

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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 much larger than most other types of spiders and need to eat bigger prey to survive.

Of course, you can give them one and see if they eat it! Just make sure you throw in 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.

Conclusion

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!

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