Ticks are nasty parasites that feed on human blood and spread life-threatening diseases.
They hide in tall grasses near aquatic sources. And if you or any animal walk through the grasses, ticks can latch onto you.
But do ticks have natural predators? Are spiders tick predators?
Spiders are nature’s top-tier pest controllers that hunt and eat bugs inside your home.
So, do spiders eat ticks? Or, like the dust mites, ticks are too small to become spiders’ food?
Let’s find it out.
Do Spiders Eat Ticks?
Spiders eat ticks if they can find them. As ticks are ground-dwelling bugs and can’t fly, there are only specific types of spiders that will hunt and eat ticks.
Do Any Spiders Eat Ticks?
Spiders that spin web high up on the home’s ceilings and walls don’t eat ticks. It’s not because they don’t eat ticks. It’s because ticks don’t crawl that high.
So, house spiders that spin webs on walls and ceilings, like the cobweb spider, don’t eat ticks.
But spiders that lurk and pounce on their prey to hunt them are typical tick eaters.
These spiders will pounce on any ticks they come across and eat them.
What Animals And Insects Eat Ticks?
Apart from the spiders, ticks have many predators.
The most common predators of ticks are –
- Fire ants
- Carpet beetles
Out of these, opossums kill and eat the most ticks. They love to eat ticks, and they kill more than 90% of the ticks they encounter.
Experts say that an opossum can eat 5000 ticks in a year.
Fire ants are also prolific tick hunters in the outdoors. Both ticks and fire ants share the same habitat outdoors.
Is It OK To Rely On A Spider In Your Home To Eliminate Ticks?
Ticks in the home are more dangerous than spiders in your home.
Spiders inside your home are harmless, and they can easily co-exist with you without harming you.
Unlike ticks, spiders won’t follow you, bite you, and drink your blood. The truth is that spiders are shy and avoid human contact as much as possible.
That’s why they will hide in the cluttered, dark nooks and corners of your house where there is low human footfall.
But that’s not the case with ticks.
Ticks will hide in places where they can easily access their hosts. So, if ticks are in your home, they’ll hide in places like your couch or near the bed.
And spiders don’t live or hide in these places unless there’s a massive spider infestation.
So, spiders won’t be able to catch those ticks.
That’s why it’ll be a futile effort to bring a spider home to get rid of the ticks.
Your best bet is to hire a pest controller to eliminate ticks.
What Animals Carry Ticks?
Any animal can carry ticks. It includes rats, pets, birds, and even wildlife.
Ticks are parasites, and they feed on the blood of their hosts.
Your pets will most likely bring parasites like ticks and fleas into your home.
When they play outdoors in the grasses and bushes, where the ticks live, the ticks will latch onto them, drill them inside their skin and feed on their blood.
Dog ticks and lone-star ticks are two common ticks harmful to pets.
These ticks can also fall off your pets’ fur when they’re through with their blood meals.
And when your pet is on your bed and couch, the ticks that fell off will hide in these places.
Without a host, ticks will bite you to feed on your blood.
So, if your pet dog or cat is consistently scratching itself, it’ll be best to check them for parasites like fleas and ticks.
Like the brown recluse, spiders that lurk and pounce on their prey eat ticks. The spiders that spin webs high up on the walls or trees are unlikely ticks hunters.
This guide also revealed animals and insects that eat ticks. And why your pets are most likely to bring ticks home.
Despite being tick eaters, spiders are not the solution for ticks in your home. And ticks are more dangerous than spiders.
Nang Chen is an Entomologist and Arachnologist who is associated with Vienna’s museum of natural history. He’s also a consultant with real estate groups, insecticide conglomerates and law enforcement groups as a forensic entomologist. Nang Chen holds an M.S. from South China University and he’s a regular contributor to our site.