Grass spiders will eat almost any insect that is found in grass. This includes grasshoppers, moths, crickets, aphids, grass bugs, ants, and other smaller insects. Sometimes, they might prey on smaller spiders as well.
Grass spiders are sometimes welcomed by farmers and grassland owners due to their ability to control insect populations effectively. However, sometimes, the populations of grass spiders can increase rapidly over a short time due to the abundance of food, which makes them hard to control.
What Do Grass Spiders Eat?
Let’s take a look at some of the most common foods that grass spiders eat. Most of these foods will belong to the category of insects.
Grass spiders are grass-dwelling spiders, which means they will hunt smaller and medium-sized insects that are found in these grassy areas.
Grasshoppers are one of the most common types of prey that grass spiders consume. They’re not that hard to catch, although they can jump quite fast and high. This might make them a bit elusive, although the grass spiders have different strategies for hunting grasshoppers.
The most prominent method is to use their webs. Unlucky grasshoppers might get entangled in the opening of the funnel web, which makes them unable to move. When this happens, the spider will be alarmed, and it will kill off the grasshopper with its venom.
After that, the grasshopper becomes unable to move, and the grass spider will start to break down the grasshopper with their venom. This is used to liquefy the grasshopper, making it easy to eat.
Moths are also commonly found in grasslands, and grass spiders will waste no time to catch them.
Like grasshoppers, moths will get tangled inside the web of a grass spider from where it will be hard to escape. After the spider is alarmed, the moth will stand next to no chance of survival as the venom of the spider is administered.
Grass spiders are also highly effective at reducing cricket populations. Crickets are one of the most widely preferred types of food for grass spiders because they’re able to catch them in a few different ways.
The most common way that grass spiders catch crickets is by ambushing them. Grass spiders can also capture crickets by allowing the cricket to get caught inside the web, which almost guarantees the kill.
After the cricket is caught in the web, the spider will administer the venom, which aims to paralyze the cricket. The grass spider might have several animals stuck inside its web.
4. Aphids and Grass Bugs
Aphids and grass bugs are commonly present on leaves and grasses. Grass and farm owners are often concerned about aphids as they can go significant damage to their produce.
Luckily for them, there is a good way of getting rid of these aphids naturally. One of the best ways to do so is to allow grass spiders to create webs around the affected plants and catch the aphids that are populating them.
For the grass spiders, catching aphids and other grass bugs will be a piece of cake. They will be able to catch them with their strength and speed, as the aphids don’t usually provide a lot of resistance to the spider. They’re also abundant where they live, making it possible for the grass spider to get fed quickly.
Grass spiders also sometimes catch ants, but only if there are no other animals stuck inside their webs.
Ants provide a good meal for the grass spider because they’re quite easy to catch, while also providing the spider with some crucial nutrients.
If you hate mosquitoes, then the good news is that some spider species will actively hunt them and eat them.
One of those spider species is also the grass spider. It will catch mosquitoes by getting them stuck inside their webs. After that, the grass spider will kill the mosquito by applying venom and enzymes, which will make it easier to consume.
7. Smaller Spiders
Sometimes, grass spiders will also hunt smaller spiders that they can find in their vicinity. They will do that thanks to their strength and size, as they are larger than most spiders that are found in grasslands.
Most spiders will get caught inside the web of a grass spider from where there will be no escape for the smaller spider. Sometimes though, the grass spider will have to stretch its legs and run after the other smaller spiders they are looking to catch.
Do grass spiders eat roaches?
Yes, roaches are one of the most widely preferred types of food for grass spiders. Often, the populations of roaches where grass spiders live are quite high, which makes it easier for the spider to get their catch. They also don’t offer much resistance, making it a popular type of food for the grass spider.
Do grass spiders eat ticks?
Yes, sometimes, grass spiders will eat ticks. There is an abundance of ticks in grass spider habitats. Most ticks that grass spiders catch will get caught inside the web of a grass spider from where the grass spider will finish the job easily.
Do grass spiders eat brown recluse spiders?
It is unlikely that grass spiders would eat or catch brown recluse spiders. The first possible reason for this is the fact that they don’t often share the same habitat, as recluse spiders tend to hide, while grass spiders create large-scale webs in grasslands. Secondly, the brown recluse is likely more powerful than the grass spider, which is primarily thanks to its strong venom. The grass spider would likely not risk its life by catching the brown recluse.
RELATED SPIDER DIET FACTS:
Grass spiders are highly effective at catching insects and bugs that are found in grasslands. They create funnel webs, which attract many insects that get caught inside. Sometimes though, the grass spider will have to do some catching in which case, it is also highly effective.