How to Identify a Red & White Horned Spider

Written by brenna davis
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Spiders come in a diverse array of colours, shapes and sizes, and a few species of spiders look like they have horns. Crab spiders and spiny orb weavers have flat and round body shapes with protrusions from their abdomen. Jumping spiders do not have actual horns, but are hairy with very long legs and large jaws, which can create the appearance of horns. Though these spiders may look intimidating, none of them are harmful to humans. In order to identify a red and white spider with horns, you'll need to observe the location, behaviour and size of the spider.

Skill level:


  1. 1

    Look for hair on the spider's legs. Crab spiders and spiny orb weavers have smooth, shiny bodies but jumping spiders can be immediately recognised by the long hairs on their legs and bodies. These spiders come in a variety of colours ranging from drab brown to bright white with red markings.

  2. 2

    Check for a web. Neither jumping spiders nor crab spiders build web to trap their prey. These animals are fast-moving predators that actively hunt for food. Spiny orb weavers, however, build large spiral-shaped webs that are normally located in sunny areas.

  3. 3

    Watch the spider's behaviour. Jumping spiders are named for their ability to jump as high as 40 times their own height. Crab spiders attempt to capture their prey in gardens, and some species can change their colour to blend in with their surroundings. Orb weavers are slow-moving and rarely leave their webs.

  4. 4

    Take note of the spider's eyes. Jumping spiders have large eyes and excellent eye sight, which they rely on to capture prey. Crab spider eyes are much smaller but can still be seen up close. They are located just above the spider's mouth. Spiny orb weavers have very small eyes that tend to blend in with the rest of their body.

  5. 5

    Observe the spider's horns up close, if possible. Jumping spiders only have the appearance of horns. Upon closer observation, you'll see that the spider simply has a large mouth with very hairy legs. Crab spiders may have asymmetrical horns placed randomly on their bodies, while spiny orb weavers always have six hornlike protrusions on their abdomens.

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