With four-inch-long legs they can parachute through the air using their web.

First, we had the spotted lanternflies, then we endured the Cicadas which come out ever seventeen years, and now we have a possible invasion of large flying spiders coming to the Northeast. These unique creatures, the Joro Spiders (Nephila Clavata), are not your typical arachnids. They are brightly colored and have an impressive leg span of four inches.

Initially from Japan, they are believed to have infiltrated the Southeastern United States in 2013, with the highest concentration reported in Georgia starting in 2021. There is a theory that they were unintentionally transported to the United States via human activity such as international trade, cargo shipments or personal travel.

As reports confirm, the invasion of the Joro Spider is anticipated to continue north potentially reaching New Jersey later this year. This is not just a matter of a few spiders. As they continue to spread up the East coast, there are serious concerns about the potential disruption they could cause to the local ecosystem. These spiders are known to effectively control insect populations, so the introduction of a non-native species could significantly upset the balance of any local ecosystem.

Joro spiders are predatory to many insects and may harm the food web, possibly creating a ripple effect throughout the local ecosystem. The Joro spider will also pose challenges for residents and local authorities. Because of their overwhelming size and appearance, they will frighten many people with intimidation. There is also fear and concern about causing harm to humans because they are venomous. Their venom is not deadly to humans, but it may cause allergic reactions and discomfort to some individuals.

Another trait that sets them apart from other spiders is their flying ability, which is uncommon in other spiders. Their ability to fly comes from a technique known as ballooning. They release silk threads into the air, and the wind carries them through the air as if they were flying.

There is a significant need for education and awareness to coexist with these large arachnids with minimal panic and concern. But rest assured, efforts to manage the invasion are currently underway. Researchers and scientists are diligently studying their behavior and monitoring the spread. Understanding the biology and ecological effects of these spiders is a top priority, as it will help develop effective strategies to mitigate the impact they will have.

One pest control company has taken the initiative to effectively educate its clients on the possibility of an upcoming invasion. Russell Sieb, president of NJ Pest Control and certified Veteran owned, will educate anyone who contacts NJ Pest Control on how to plan and react to a possible invasion. You can learn more at 4NJPest.com.

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