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Daddy Long Legs

If you have been into your basement or around your property and seen spiders in their webs with very long legs, you have probably looked at one of the most common spiders found in homes and buildings in North America - the daddy long legs. There are a lot of rumors and myths about daddy long legs and just how much of a concern they should be.

There are actually two types of species of arachnids that have been labeled with the moniker of daddy long legs. One of them is an actual spider, while the other isn't.

What is a Daddy Long Legs?

Daddy Long Legs


  • An arachnid, but technically not a spider.
  • Has no segmented body like a spider, but appears as one ball-like structure amid the legs.
  • Has legs much longer than its body
  • Has no fangs and no venom glands
  • Does not liquefy food like a spider, but eats small pieces of prey
  • Have poor eyesight and use front legs as feelers.
  • Are lone hunters and do not build webs.
Cellar Spider

Cellar Spiders

  • Legs are 5 to 6 times longer than its body. 
  • Considered harmless to humans. 
  • Will vibrate its entire body and its web to ward off potential predators rather than attack. It vibrates up and down so fast, it becomes hard to see and predators can lose sight of it.
  • Eats mosquitoes, woodlice and other smaller insects - including other spiders.
  • Very commonly found in homes and cellars, earning its name as cellar spider.

Are Daddy Long Legs Poisonous?

It depends on which arachnid you are referring to when it comes to determining if daddy long legs are poisonous. An urban legend has spouted up for both Harvestmen and Cellar Spiders that they are actually the most poisonous spiders in the world, but their fangs are too small to pierce the skin of a human. This is not true.

Harvestmen may get very large if you consider the size of their legs, but the fact is that they do not have fangs like a regular spider. They also have absolutely no poison glands. They have small structures near their mouths known as chelicerae that look like very tiny claws. They use these to grasp, hold and chew up their prey. Even if they wanted to envenomate something, they couldn’t.

Cellar spiders, on the other hand, do have small fangs and do carry venom. It also been proven that their fangs are large enough that they can bite humans. However, the venom has been tested and it is very weak, often not even being fatal to other insects. Cellar spiders would much rather run away than bite a human, but if cornered and bothered, it might bite, causing, at best, a mild burning at the site of the bite.

Rentokil Steritech Spider Control Solutions

Even though daddy long legs present no actual threat, cellar spiders and harvestmen can be disturbing to those who find many of them in their home. Cellar spiders also create webs which can become dirty with debris and make a home look unkempt. Too many daddy long legs can be a problem.

If you have a spider infestation in your home or on your property, then call on the experts at Rentokil Steritech. Just use our online form or call us at 1-800-837-5520 to discuss spider control solutions.