Safely get rid of spiders

Michael Bird

Active Member
10 Year Member!
Joined
Jun 25, 2010
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240
Location (City and/or State)
Salt Lake City, Utah
I discovered today that a large spider has taken up residence inside the cave in my Hermann's outdoor enclosure. I haven't been able to get a good look at the spider's back, but from the shape it sure looks like a black widow. The spider might not bother the tortoise, but there are times when I need to reach in there to pull the tortoise out and I don't want to put my hands anywhere near that spider!

I've tried to "swat" the spider with a long stick but it ran into a hole in the cracks between the sandstone tiles that I'm using for the roof of the cave.

I have several different sprays that will kill spiders but I'm afraid that spraying any of them inside the cave could leave residue that will harm the tortoise, so I'm hoping someone out there has some ideas for what I can use to encourage the spider to leave without hurting the tortoise.
 

tarantulagirl

New Member
Joined
Dec 4, 2022
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1
Location (City and/or State)
East sussex
I discovered today that a large spider has taken up residence inside the cave in my Hermann's outdoor enclosure. I haven't been able to get a good look at the spider's back, but from the shape it sure looks like a black widow. The spider might not bother the tortoise, but there are times when I need to reach in there to pull the tortoise out and I don't want to put my hands anywhere near that spider!

I've tried to "swat" the spider with a long stick but it ran into a hole in the cracks between the sandstone tiles that I'm using for the roof of the cave.

I have several different sprays that will kill spiders but I'm afraid that spraying any of them inside the cave could leave residue that will harm the tortoise, so I'm hoping someone out there has some ideas for what I can use to encourage the spider to leave without hurting the tortoise.
Hi , as a tarantula keeper and tortoise, you need to hoover it up,get it out.please don't spray . Not good for tortie..you cannot encourage spiders to leave they'll just hide,are you able to remove the roof. And then hoover. Or if your tortoise can't reach the roof you could try super double sided sticky tape.spider will stick too it. But I realise tortoises are very inquisitive and might prod with nose. I love tarantulas; but don't tolerate true spiders in my house ,I usually get a glass, but widow species I'm careful with and they always get in a tight corner, making it tricky to remove. Good luck
 

SinLA

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Tortoise Club
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Apr 19, 2022
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1,810
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Los Angeles
I have the exact same issue. I use thick gardening gloves to get my tort out but I am definitely concerned about him getting bitten because it’s a small hide. Others on here have assured me he’s not in danger but I am not confident in that.
 

Michael Bird

Active Member
10 Year Member!
Joined
Jun 25, 2010
Messages
240
Location (City and/or State)
Salt Lake City, Utah
The cave is buried so I'd have to dig it out, but that is an option if nothing else works. Since the spider is retreating into a space between the stones of the roof, I wouldn't be able to grab it with tape. A vacuum attachment might work, though, if I can get enough suction to pull the spider out of its hiding spot. I'll give that a try. Thanks!

If it was just a 'regular' garden spider, I might leave it alone as they get help get rid of other pests. But not a spider that is both aggressive and dangerously venomous...
 

Michael Bird

Active Member
10 Year Member!
Joined
Jun 25, 2010
Messages
240
Location (City and/or State)
Salt Lake City, Utah
Shop vacuum with a wide flat attachment worked great. I actually saw it pull the big spider out of the crack even before I got it in place, and then held the attachment across the crack for a while to pull out anything else that might have been hiding in there.

I might use some foam gap filler or something like that to fill in the cracks eventually, just to remove the hiding space from future invaders..
 
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