An online resource based on the award-winning nature guide

Wolf Spider Mother and Spiderlings

Two common spiders that we often see carrying their egg sacs are the wolf spider and the nursery web spider. Wolf spiders attach their egg sacs to their spinnerets, whereas nursery web spiders carry them with their mouthparts. When nursery web spiders are about to hatch, the mother puts her egg sac into a silk tent she has spun, and they live there for a week or so. When a wolf spider’s spiderlings emerge from their egg sac, they climb up onto their mother’s abdomen and cling to it while their mother continues to hunt for food. After about a week, when partially grown, the spiderlings disperse, either by ballooning through the air on silk strands or simply by scurrying off along the ground.

3 responses

  1. Cecelia Blair

    Mary, where are the baby spiders in this picture? I don’t know what to look for when they are so young.

    June 19, 2012 at 3:05 pm

    • They’re all over their momma’s back – their bodies are a yellowish color and their legs are greyish.

      My husband and I have a thing for wolf spiders; the care they have for their babies, the way we often find them toting eggs or spiderlings around when we’re working in the garden, have really helped me get over my fear of spiders in general.

      June 19, 2012 at 3:36 pm

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