Brown Carolina Wolf Spiders

The South Carolina state spider is the Carolina wolf spider (Hogna carolinensis). This spider is considered to be the largest North American wolf spider. It is also one of the largest wolf spider species worldwide. Like other wolf spiders, the Carolina wolf spider has eight legs and eight eyes. The fourth pair of legs is longer than the other three. The smallest of the wolf spider’s eyes are present at the lower part of the face, while larger eyes are located atop them. These spiders are are often mistaken for brown recluses.

These spiders are nocturnal predators, although they may also be seen during the daytime. Like the tarantula, the Carolina wolf spider creates burrows underground rather than webs. They are found in wooded and dry shrub lands, coastal forests and suburban gardens.

The Carolina wolf spider is sexually dimorphic, with male and female specimens exhibiting different physical traits. Wolf spiders typically reach about 2.5 cm in body length.  Most commonly brown in color, gray and black specimens can be seen, and colored markings along the abdomen are also likely.

Like most animals, wolf spiders are known to attack when threatened, but they prefer to run and hide. However, despite its fast movements and frightening appearance, the wolf spider’s bite causes only mild effects, including swelling, itching and localized pain (while that of the brown recluse has the capability to cause tissue damage). If a bite occurs, and there are medical concerns, the person should seek medical attention.