Brown Recluse vs Wolf Spider

All spiders are deadly (really venomous), although few have venom potent enough to hurt a person, at least in North America. The brown recluse spider is one of them, and its venom may be lethal. Ironically, despite having tiny fangs, this spider can’t truly eat through clothes.

Although the wolf spider bite can result in discomfort and edema, it is not fatal. The Brown Recluse and the Wolf Spider differ in many ways. To name a few:

What Is A Brown Recluse and Wolf Spider

Brown Recluse

Though its distribution has recently expanded northward, the brown recluse is a poisonous spider that is most frequently seen in the southern and western parts of the United States. Brown recluses are tiny to medium-sized, measuring around 0.25 inches in length and one inch in diameter (including the legs).

They are distinct-looking spiders with short legs and a spherical, hairless body. They are often light brown, tan, or yellow in color. Due to the deeper brown violin form on the rear of their cephalothorax, they are also known as violin spiders.

These spiders are solitary, preferring to live alone, and shun human interaction, as their name indicates. They generally reside in caves, underground tunnels, beneath leaves, and other isolated locations.

Brown recluses also occasionally stay in homes, settling in unattended attics, basements, closets, and cardboard boxes. Since they often flee from humans and only bite in self-defense if they have no other way to escape, they are not extremely violent.

When a brown recluse bites, the blood arteries at the bite site are destroyed, which frequently results in a large ring of dying skin cells surrounding the bite itself. The wound after being bitten by a brown recluse may take many months to heal, and in extreme situations, the victim may even pass away.

Wolf Spider

Any of the 2,300 or so medium to big hairy spider species can be referred to as a wolf spider. Although these spiders may be found all over the world, North America is where they are most common.

Wolf spiders can be any shade of brown, tan, black, gray, orange, or cream, but they are typically spotted or striped. They have eight eyes organized in rows of two, two, and four, and their torso and legs are covered with hair.

Their large, hairy jaws that hang down vertically from the face are what best distinguishes them physically.

Wolf spiders pursue food by chasing and capturing it rather than by creating webs since they reside on the ground. They frequently make small tunnels in the ground and dwell under leaf litter or other ground detritus.

Wolf spiders occasionally get access to homes and take up residence in dark, undisturbed crevices in basements, attics, and storage spaces, similar to brown recluses. Additionally, they are quite timid around people and tend to flee rather than try to fight and bite a threat.

Wolf spider bites are often not harmful, although you may experience some localized discomfort and little swelling if you do get bitten by one. When employed for hunting, they do carry a weak venom that paralyzes and liquefies the target insects, however this venom seldom has any major effects on humans.

Brown Recluse vs Wolf Spider : Bodies

Spiders are not insects; instead, they are arachnids, which are related to ticks, scorpions, and crustaceans like lobsters and crayfish. Despite the fact that many people categorize spiders and other multi-legged animals as “bugs,” they are not insects.

Arachnids, such as the wolf and brown recluse spiders, have two rather than three body portions, in contrast to insects. In comparison to insects, spiders have one additional set of legs, making a total of eight.

The cephalothorax, which is a mixture of the head and thorax in both spiders, has eight legs that are attached to it. Both reproductive and critical organs are located in the abdomen. Unlike the majority of wolf spider species, reclusive wolf spiders contain spinnerets under their core for weaving webs. Both animals have the first pair of legs, which are somewhat shorter than the other six and are utilized for both collecting prey and defense.

A wolf spider’s size might be a little frightening. This spider’s length can range from one to fifteen inches depending on the species, and its leg spread can occasionally exceed three inches. It makes sense that you may mistake this hairy spider for a tarantula that has broken into your house.

Despite the fact that brown recluse spiders are typically between one-fourth and one-half inches long, wolf spiders are sometimes mistaken for them. Their joined legs lack the wolf spiders’ pronounced hairiness. It won’t be a recluse if you notice a brownish spider that is larger than half an inch.

Both spiders have developed a cunning camouflage that resembles the surrounding vegetation, rock, and dirt. The several wolf spider species come in an eclectic mix of browns, blacks, and grays. Brown recluses can also be a blend of gray and black, despite being known for their typical brown hues.

Both spiders frequently have an abdomen that is a distinct color than the rest of their bodies. The violin-shaped marking on the brown recluse’s upper body is, of course, what makes them famous. According to folklore, it symbolizes the poisonous spider “fiddling around” while its meal suddenly expires.

Both spiders have many pairs of eyes in front of their cephalothorax and mouth pincers. Looking at a threatening spider with four pairs of eyes staring back at you sends chills down your spine. Wolf spiders have two large eyes that can see color and a great distance, like most spiders do. Their three smaller pairs of eyes are exclusively used to detect movement.

Brown recluses have six eyes, two of which are conspicuous and only two of which are smaller pairs. For locating prey and avoiding danger and predators, both relatives of the spider family require numerous eyes. The bigger wolf spider’s eight eyes may be more easily seen up close than the smaller recluse spider’s six eyes.

Wolf spiders have strong fangs that they employ to sever or inject poison into their victims. Brown recluses also employ their poisonous teeth to render their prey’s bodies liquified and immobile. Wolf spider bites are possible and can occasionally result in an allergic reaction, but a brown recluse bite can be more harmful.

Brown Recluse Vs. Wolf Spider: Who Will Win?

It would be quite the spectacle if a brown recluse and a wolf spider got into a battle. A huge, hairy spider that hunts prey much as wolves does may be found beside a spider whose poison is potent enough to slowly kill a human.

who would prevail in this conflict?

Though you may think the recluse would have the upper hand, the wolf spider would probably prevail in the end.

Wolf spiders have various benefits over brown recluses, including being stronger, quicker, and considerably bigger. Additionally, its poison works significantly faster than other snakes’.

All types of insects, including other spiders, are expertly hunted by wolf spiders. Even while its venom is often safe for humans to consume, it swiftly subdues and liquefies the insides of their target, usually killing it within minutes.

The wolf spider would ultimately die from the venom if the brown recluse managed to bite it first, but not quickly enough to rescue the recluse.

The wolf spider would also benefit from its aggressiveness. Wolf spiders may and do act significantly more aggressively toward insects, especially those they see as their next meal, even though neither they nor recluses are violent toward people.

Therefore, it is quite likely that the wolf spider will start the fight, putting the recluse on the defensive right away.

The wolf spider would pounce on the recluse, hold it down with its greater speed and power, and then shoot its poison at it to kill it.

The recluse would make an effort to defend itself, but it would be powerless against the wolf spider, and as the poison pumped through its body, its strength would gradually wane. Most likely, the hermit would pass away within a few minutes.

Brown Recluse and Wolf Spider Habitat

With the exception of the coldest regions, wolf spiders may be found wherever. Forests, wooded places, coastal regions, mountains, populated areas, meadows, and gardens are some of their habitats. While they don’t spin webs, some of them do build fortresses or burrows that they fortify with stones or trap doors.

In the United States, brown recluse spiders may be found from Nebraska through Texas and east to Georgia and Kentucky. In dark spaces like sheds, basements, closets, and garages, they weave tangled webs.

They appear to enjoy living beneath cardboard particularly. When someone reaches their hand into a dark space and the spider is startled, they risk getting bitten.

Brown Recluse and Wolf Spider Behaviors

The majority of spiders, including wolf spiders and brown recluses, stay away from people and other animals in general. Both animals are solitary and lack social interaction. These spiders can, however, be found in large numbers across each location.

The wolf spider gets its name from the way it hunts its victim. They fight insects and other spiders at night like the ferocious wolf, rather than trapping prey in a web. They will frequently hunt their prey and are nimble with superb vision.

In addition to using the hunting strategy, brown recluse spiders don’t wait for insects to become trapped in their web. In the evening is when they prefer to hunt, and they will pursue a tasty insect. During the day, they withdraw to the solitude of their hiding spot.

Both species are strong combatants when provoked or attacked. They protect themselves against other spiders, birds, and amphibians. The wolf spider intimidates prospective predators with its size and quickness.


Both wolf spiders and brown recluse spiders engage in courting rituals, and certain wolf spider species have very complex rituals. The female wolf spiders carry their egg sac in their spinnerets, which makes them different from other spiders.

As she wanders from one location to another, the young hatch from the eggs and clamber upon her back. They eventually scatter by releasing a silk thread and allowing it to transform into a parachute that carries them away on the wind.

The egg sac is also produced by brown recluse spiders, and the mother may occasionally carry it or dangle it from her web or a plant. The spiderlings remain in the egg sac after they hatch until their initial molt. They don’t ride their mother’s back or fly from place to place as wolf spiders do.

Life Cycles

Fall is the ideal time for wolf spiders to mate. The bigger females are drawn to the males, they mate, and the females then go for a secluded area to deposit their eggs. They make a silk egg sac skillfully and place up to 100 eggs within. Until the eggs hatch in roughly 7 to 14 days, they maintain their egg sac’s attachment to their body.

Up to 22 days will pass before the mother opens the egg sac by chewing it. The practically minuscule young spiders, known as spiderlings, swarm their mother’s body. For a few weeks, the protective mother will carry her young on her body before letting them go on their own.

The warmest summer months are when brown recluses chose to reproduce. A braided egg sac contains roughly 50 eggs that the female deposits after mating.

She fastens it in a concealment area and then departs in pursuit of a different partner. Females can reproduce many times during the season. The recluse spiderlings are fully autonomous after hatching in approximately a month.

Both species’ spiderlings go through five to ten skin-shedding cycles as they develop into adults. Brown recluse spiders may survive up to two years in perfect conditions. A female wolf spider may live for several years, whereas males can survive for up to one year.

Brown recluses are extremely adaptable creatures since they can live up to six months without eating or drinking. Without food, wolf spiders may live for roughly a week. Both species modify their metabolic processes in response to prey availability.

Getting Rid of Brown Recluse and Wolf Spiders

Spiders may not be as eager to enter your house as other pests, but they may nonetheless feel at home there. Seal up possible entrances to keep wolf spiders and brown recluse spiders out. Your foundation should be sealed, and windows and doors should be properly sealed.

Keep the amount of bush surrounding your home as low as possible since these fanged critters like to hide. Steer clear of piling up wood or other invasive spider-attracting building materials close to your house.

Planting these herbs about your home would be a great natural deterrent because they hate the scent of mint or lavender. For the protection of your family, you must seek expert assistance if you have an infestation of these arachnids.


Both wolf spiders and brown recluses are poisonous spiders. Although a wolf spider’s venom acts far more swiftly and efficiently against target insects, a brown recluse’s bite is much more dangerous to humans.

This makes it nearly guaranteed that a wolf spider would kill a brown recluse if they engaged in combat, in addition to having an advantage over them in terms of size, strength, and temperament.