A New Invasive Pest Is Spreading Quickly Across The South
While the warm early summer weather is bringing many household pests back out into full force, these common pests may have a new enemy to contend with. There is a new invasive pest that is spreading quickly across the south. The newest invasive species to land on our shores and spread quickly across the Southeast and up the East Coast, is the East Asian Joro Spider. Known for its distinctive bright yellow, blue, and red striped body and legs, this spider is striking to look at, especially since many people have never seen one before. A new study from the University of Georgia found that despite arriving in the United States in 2013, the Joro spider has only recently started migrating, and we are going to see lots more of them in the years to come. For more on this invasive species, let’s look at how and why the Joro spider is quickly spreading across the Southeast.
The Joro Spider’s Mythological Origin
The joro spider, primarily found in east Asia, has an incredibly interesting origin to its name. Due to the large size and striking coloring of the arachnids, the Japanese began colloquially calling them “joro” after the mythical “jorogumo.” The jorogumo of Japanese myth is a demon or ghost that transforms from a giant spider into a beautiful woman to eat unsuspecting men. Thankfully, the only thing Joro spiders have in common with jorogumo is the name. Unlike their mythological counterpart, joro’s have no interest in humans and have been reported to be quite timid according to entomologists familiar with the spiders. Joro spiders are also not poisonous to humans, though they trap their prey with massive webs that can be up to 10 feet deep.
Why Are Joro Spiders Spreading Across The U.S?
Though they have been relatively stagnant since arriving in Georgia in the early 2010s, Joro spiders are now heading up into the Carolinas, and some entomologists believe that they could be headed all the way up to Canada. Experts say that the spread of the Joro spider is due to two interesting factors. The first reason why Joro spiders are spreading so quickly is their unique mode of travel. In the spring, Joro hatchlings use their silk to create a parachute that can be used to float across long distances. This process of ballooning is how Joros were able to spread across the Southeast soon after arriving. The second factor that contributes to the spiders’ spread up the East Coast is human in nature. Joro spiders can easily get stuck in a moving truck, delivery vehicle, or even just a car heading off on a road trip and spread to another state in a matter of hours. While an invasion of large bright yellow spiders may sound like something out of a movie, it’s not such a bad thing.
Are Joro Spiders Here To Stay?
Like many invasive species, Joro spiders are here to stay. While there have been no reported sightings in Alabama yet, it’s likely that the spiders will soon call the state home. While this invasion may sound intimidating, it is not necessarily for the worst. Entomologists have reported that Joro spiders have helped keep mosquitos, flies, and other pests in check in Georgia. Joro spiders should also be treated like welcome new neighbors, as they are one of the only species of spiders that feast on the much more harmful stink bug. These stink bugs have been known to decimate crops like cotton, corn, and soybeans, making the Joro spider a huge benefit to the ecosystem. While more research needs to be done on the spread of these spiders, for now, experts insist that they cause no harm to humans and should be left alone or gently moved out of the way if encountered.
While Joro spiders may be a boon to the ecosystem, there are plenty of pests that aren’t. If you are struggling with an infestation of fleas, mosquitos, termites, or any other variety of pests, you need to call the company that has been delivering quality pest control to Alabama for over 25 years. With a variety of excellent monthly quarterly, and one-time rates Advanced Pest Control of Alabama should be the only call you make to stop a summer pest infestation in its tracks.