American Spider Beetle: 5 Interesting Facts & Beetle Removal Guide

Spider or beetle? We provide the answers within this pest guide. 

Keep on reading to find out how to prevent spider beetles from spreading within your home.

Spider Beetle Identification

Size: The average adult American spider beetle tends to be anywhere between 1.5 to 3.5 millimeters in length. 

Color: American Spider Beetles have a dark red body almost a copper color. Their legs tend to be either yellow or cream. 

Features: 

  • Head: Two long antennae, one on each side of the beetle’s head. It’s head is much smaller than it’s body and covered in tiny little hairs.

  • Body: It’s thorax is much larger than it’s head, almost four times the size and is covered in small light colored hairs.

Why are they called a Spider Beetle?

The name comes from the spider beetle’s shape, which has a large body almost hump like. When looking down upon a spider beetle, it looks similar to a spider. Another reason is due to the two long antennae which are often mistaken for another pair of legs, so it resembles a spider.

American Spider Beetle Life Cycle

The average adult female spider beetle will lay between 35-40 eggs at a time, more often than not within stored foods. She will spin a silk cocoon out of which young spider beetles will slowly become adults over the course of three months. 

Larvae will remain within the cocoon then emerge during the spring as fully grown spider beetles.

What are spider beetles?

Spider beetles are small insects that look very similar to your average spider. They are commonly found in North America, likely to be found in your kitchen or food storages. While they may look like a spider, they are unlikely to bite you.

What attracts the American spider beetle?

Spider Beetles are scavengers, they have multiple food sources such as:

  • Cereals
  • Grains
  • Seeds
  • Animal feed
  • Tobacco
  • Beans
  • Dead insects
  • Vegetables

As you can tell by this long list, they will eat anything especially if food is left open or if it’s easily accessible.

Where are spider beetles found?

American Spider beetles are often confused with bed bugs, this is mainly due to their behaviour as both pests are nocturnal insects. Spider beetles choose to search for their food at night time and normally avoid humans.

The American Spider Beetle is primarily found within Northern America in areas such as NYC.

Do spider beetles bite?

American Spider beetles are not reported to bite humans as they rarely come into direct contact, but will happily enter and breed within food sources. 

The American Spider beetle can be an annoying pest especially if there is a large infestation left to grow. These pests like to lay their eggs within food sources such as open bags of rice, grain or other stored food.

Not only do spider beetles cause damage to food products they also cause the food environment to be unsanitary. They can also cause structural damage as the infestation grows such as behind wallpaper and within drywall.

How Do I Get Rid of Spider Beetles?

The first step to dealing with your spider beetle problem, is to identify how serious the infestation is. If the infestation is quite large, we would always recommend seeking the help of a professional. 

However in some cases, particularly smaller infestations which are considered less than 20 spider beetles, we have provided a DIY method.

1.Find out where the spider beetles are coming from:

Search through your cupboards, food storage areas such as your pantry or garage. Things to keep an eye out for are: insect, rodent or other animal feces that could be a source of infestation. 

If you come across anything that resembles animal feces, these must be discarded straight away. Make sure you’re wearing gloves before touching any animal feces. Remove any trash or food sources that may attract or be exposed to by the spider beetles.

If you find any areas which are moist specifically near food, focus on cleaning and drying those areas first:

2.Clean & Tidy

Clean shelves, cupboards, kitchen surfaces, pantries, grills and bbqs. Anywhere that might have traces of contaminated food products. Sweep those areas then vacuum all areas which might have traces of an infestation, then wash those areas with soap and water.

We recommend using plastic containers with air-tight seals to store dried food such as cereals, rice, grains, seeds and pasta to help prevent possible infestations.

Rice and seeds that are stored for long peroids of time are the ideal places for spider beetles to breed, so we recommend throwing these away.

Contact a Pest Control Expert

Pest control experts understand the differences between American Spider beetles, bed bugs and other similar looking pests. They are trained to seek out spider beetles and provide a pest control solution to rid these pests from your home.

Spider Beetle in Summary

Spider Beetles are one of the less dangerous pests however a pest nevertheless, we recommend keeping food storage areas clean and tidy to prevent a further infestation.

However if you do suspect a serious infestation, we recommend calling your local pest control expert.