Brown Recluse(s) in my Bedroom!

by Ivory Soap on 02/07/2012

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In the same room my baby sleeps in!!!  ACK!

One got mad at me for changing a light fixture (MAN, those guys can run fast) and one was panicked on the floor of my bedroom when we turned the lights on.

And this is not the first time.

It’s just the first time they showed up anywhere we cared about.  We also have black widows in the garage, see, so we’re not hyper about spiders, just about them where the baby sleeps.

Unlike my father who sprayed religiously, we are fairly anti-toxic-junk in our house.  And terminally lazy.  So, since this isn’t the first time, they’re likely well-established and travelling the walls at night.  Excellent.  So, today we’re doing something very not-green.  We’re having the insides of the walls dusted.  TL thinks I’m out of my mind.  Maybe you agree.  Maybe I agree, but sanity is not on the table for me when there are brown recluses in our bedrooms at night.

The bug guy said that it would take forever to get all the outlets and light switch panels removed, so he’d knock a bunch off the price if we’d do it.  “But it’s going to take you forever.”

My kids have PRACTICE with screwdrivers.  Even the five-year-old is a master. We bought a few extra screwdrivers and woke up the kids early.  Let’s take the house apart!  Less than an hour, yo.

Wish me luck.


{ 33 comments… read them below or add one }

looloolooweez February 7, 2012 at 7:48 am

ugh ohgodohgodohgod D-: D-: D-:

Dani February 7, 2012 at 7:56 am

Likewise – not mad about spiders generally, but recluse and black widows. My worst nightmare. You HAVE to bring in the big guns!

Maria February 7, 2012 at 8:14 am

I am anti-toxic-junk also, but I would have called “the Orkin man” or whoever you have down there in about 2 seconds flat……….

Kim S. February 7, 2012 at 8:27 am

I’m going to fall in on supporting this decision–there are points where we have to draw the line and KILL ALL THE SPIDERS. Brown recluses are Bad News, and having them near your baby is Very Bad News.

Spray, baby, spray.

Leanne February 7, 2012 at 8:41 am

Nothing but agreement here! We had a situation somewhat similar (but maybe a little less scary!) when we first moved into our home. We discovered that our mowed and manicured yard was loaded with deer ticks, thanks to the local deer and rabbit community that uses our property. After the 3rd tick was discovered on my little guys that summer, and we had already tried the natural approach, I raised my white flag. We purchased tick insecticide and haven’t looked back. Do I wish that there was a natural option that worked? Heck yes, but at least the kids aren’t afraid to go outside and play anymore. That makes this momma breathe a lot easier!

Ivory Soap February 7, 2012 at 8:52 am

Bless you my sisters…bless you.

Grace February 7, 2012 at 8:53 am

I’m anti-toxic junk as well. I won’t allow the yard to be sprayed for fleas, no pesticides at all, BUT…I know a man who was bitten by a brown recluse. Do whatever you have to do to get those horrible things out of your house and away from you and your kids. The damage that one bite caused is hard to deal with. Death or being maimed for life from a spider bite is a worse fate than anything the chemicals will do. Spider venom is a toxin, too, I really don’t care if it is a natural one.

Nikki February 7, 2012 at 8:58 am

I have seen what a Brown Recluse bite looks like…..I would call the exterminator too!

Gracie February 7, 2012 at 9:57 am

Add another voice to those who don’t think you are over reacting. I’ve also personally seen the damage those things do. Would TL also say you are over reacting if it was venomous snakes instead of venomous spiders? I bet not, and those spiders are more dangerous for their small size.

Sarah February 7, 2012 at 12:01 pm

OMG! I have arachnophobia pretty bad, so I’d just about have a heart attack. I have to agree with everyone else here, get rid of those awful things any way you have to. We moved into an old house last summer that sat empty for about a year, so the spider problem was pretty bad. We hired an exterminator and it was totally worth it. Coming across 6-8 wolf spiders a day was horrible, and they aren’t even dangerous.

HeatherAnne February 7, 2012 at 12:19 pm

Big green fan here too but in total agreement…

Kill them… kill them dead… bring in the big guns! I’ve seen the consequences of brown recluse bites. BAD news.

Lindsay February 7, 2012 at 1:23 pm

We have scorpions, black widows, and brown recluses regularly where my kids are if we don’t spray. I just pick a weekend when the kids and I are going out of town and my hubby sprays all the doorways and windows and along baseboards in the most visited rooms by our little pests. We only have to do it 2x a year, but those big three are absolutely where I draw the line on my chemical free home. Yuck.

Viki February 7, 2012 at 2:49 pm

To all of you there is a non-toxic solution!! Check out I have personally used there products and they work. Plus side there product is based on red texas cedar oil safe for kids, pets and even chickens-spray the girls and get rid of the parasites.

Ivory Soap February 7, 2012 at 5:04 pm

Dusting done. 3oz house-wide. Bombed the attic. Sprayed the boards. Might have cancer now, but no spider bites. WHEW.

Karen hornsten February 8, 2012 at 4:01 am

I would not mess around when it comes to these buggers. I don’t like to kill anything or spray, until it comes to threats with the kiddles i love. Then i will kill those blacks without a problem. Yup, do all you can to get rid of the recluse. I thought they hung out in dark, rusty car places? Are you positive regarding identification? You are doing the right thing.

Annabel Berry February 8, 2012 at 6:42 am

As horrible as the dusting may be, I know a couple who lost a child to a brown recluse. I’m so glad you went for it. Be safe!

Sherry February 8, 2012 at 7:33 am

By all means…do the dusting…but I would also put out the sticky spider traps…we had to do that at the school I worked in a couple of years ago….and it made a difference as spraying for brown spiders is not always effective. I have a lot of them in my shed…and they almost always run away…but I draw the line in the house.

Judy s February 8, 2012 at 7:46 am

We have had those too and my husband was but in bed once . It healed ok. Dr said poisons don’t work that well on long legged spiders like brown recluses since their bodies won’t touch the
Chemicals. I don’t throw bedding on the floor and try to vacuum more. Good luck with your spider problem.

Ginger February 8, 2012 at 8:23 am

I have heard that if you have spider problems that that means you really have a bug problem, because the spiders are there because they feed on the bugs. Have you noticed any other bugs lurking around? If yes, maybe you should bring that up to the exterminator. I am in agreement with the previous post…”spraying for brown spiders is not always effective.” I hope you get it under control…

Sondra February 8, 2012 at 8:50 am

Usually spiders in general are ook since they feast on other insects, but definitely would draw the line at brown recluses. Have seen & heard the bad stuff that happens when bitten by one. Do what you have to to get rid of them. You may have to use a fogger though if what the other comments say are true. Do what you must to keep those nasty creepers away from the ones you love!

Chelle in cal February 8, 2012 at 10:21 am

My husband is a bug man. When it comes to brown recluses there is no contest. Green goes out the window they can be DEADLY! Especially to small children, elderly, pets and I’ll people. You just have to do whatever it takes to get rid of them. Good luck!

Michelle February 8, 2012 at 10:24 am

In our house, it was scorpions. It took many, many return trips before it finally worked. The weird thing is, the spiders were gone after the first treatment. Our guy said something about their stuff sticking to the legs and bodies. As green as we are, I didn’t care. I just wanted those stinking scorpions gone so they would quit stinging my babies.

Christine Decarolis February 8, 2012 at 12:28 pm

An Orkin rep told me once that spraying spiders is a waste of time since they do not clean themselves and therefore do not ingest the poison as insects do. To get rid of spiders you must get rid of their food source. Good luck!

BrownThumbMama February 8, 2012 at 12:57 pm

Oh @#$&%$ no. I’m just about as green as they come, but you need to “dust off and nuke ’em from orbit,” sistah. No spideys around the kiddos!

Jess February 8, 2012 at 1:38 pm

ick! I was bit last year and it was not fun. I had a friend get bit as well, and she was a lot of worse than I was. She used this She said it tool care of it within a week. Good luck!

Marla B. February 8, 2012 at 3:38 pm

I live in southern Mississippi and we have black widows and brown recluse spiders as a norm. We know where they nest so we avoid them and are careful when we pick up items in the yard that have been there overnight. I can understand your frustration. Our dog just had a $630.00 surgery for an abcess that was suspected of a spider bite, and this occured out in the yard or doghouse. My mother-in-law also had a nasty bite with hospitalization several years ago. The BR spider appears to have no pain, because it has a numbing agent at the site of puncture, but the black widow has an undeniable stabbing pain upon the bite. I use to know someone in the pest business and I was told that spiders are harder to rid, because they do not lick their arms/antennae like most insects, so regular bug killer is ineffective. If you spend money on a pesticide, make sure it is specific to the spider or else you are blowing money. You may be just as well to empty the dresser-drawers and closets and wash everything and put them back. It may be more time consuming, but they nest in quiet dark places that are least disturbed. Make sure you check any old shoes/boots/purses that may only get worn a few times a year. I hope you rid your house of them soon. God bless!

Kelly morrison February 8, 2012 at 3:55 pm

Hi I’m a nurse and I’ve had patients with bites from both Back Widows and Brown Recluse spiders, really really Bad news, and my patients were adults! Protect your family, this is a justified use of pesticides.

Cally February 8, 2012 at 4:01 pm

Wow. I really need to do *something* about them as well. Hmmm.

NicoleG February 8, 2012 at 6:58 pm

I didn’t read all the comments – so don’t know if anyone suggested this for future options. I’m in western WA — we have lots of spiders. The giant house spider is one…looks like a recluse but bigger….and eats hobo spiders. I have heard of an organic spider spray that works really well. It’s made with chrysanthemums….I guess spiders can’t stand them. I don’t know very much about it….and if it works on all spiders…but worth looking into for future treatments.


JavaLady February 8, 2012 at 8:36 pm

Oh dear lord noooooo !! I hate spiders. Kill’em all !! Then tell me how you did it. Good luck !!

Portia McCracken February 8, 2012 at 9:48 pm

Ivory, are you absolutely sure what you’re seeing in the house are brown recluses? They’re called that because of their habits–they are reclusive and seldom, if ever, seen out in the open. There are other house spiders that could be mistaken for a BR. The only way to be sure is to capture one and have an arachnologist verify it–or maybe a vet could do it. Male spiders often travel in the open for long distances to for females, but I think most of those trips are usually in the Fall. Incidentally, another way to rid the house of spiders, especially those peripatetic males, is to use traps. Poisons don’t always work for the reasons mentioned.

suzanne February 9, 2012 at 12:28 pm

If you do some research on brown recluse spiders, you will find that at least 75% of the homes in the spiders’ natural territory in the U. S. are homes with brown recluse spiders in them. They are actually fairly common. In warm months when they are present, I put all of my family’s clean clothes up inside out so we have to turn the garment right-side-out in order to wear it. We also shake our shoes before putting them on, and we don’t leave clothes or bedding on the floor for spiders to crawl in. If you know their habits, they aren’t that hard to deal with.

Pesticides are DEFINITELY toxic no matter where you put them in your home. I’ll take my chances with common-sense approaches before I’d ever expose my home and family to pesticides that will remain in your home for—–how long? Before you call an exterminator, research exactly what you are putting into your home and into your bodies. You’ll be surprised at how toxic extermination truly is.

Good luck!

Tim Dinneen February 11, 2012 at 8:37 am

For more info with facts go to we handle hundreds and hundreds of houses with Brown Recluse Spiders in Kansas City. They are very difficult. They are reclusive, until they run out of room, then you will start to see them everywhere. The females do not wander far from their nest site so glueboards are only a tool, as you will mainly catch males, and juveniles. They also tell us what rooms have higher populations, and which way they were traveling, but they will NOT control populations. We have years of research and the dust we use will not only kill them, but it is mainly green materials made from tree oils, flowers, etc.

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