Do House Spiders Fight Each Other? What Do They Fight About?

Spiders are not generally known for being social creatures. They’re often seen as solo hunters, stalking their prey in the shadows and spinning webs in solitude. However, when it comes to fighting, even house spiders can be extremely territorial.

House spiders often fight each other over food, mates, and territory. Additionally, some house spiders will constantly battle other males for the chance to mate with a female, and even females will defend their webs from intruders.

spiders fighting

So what do spiders fight about? In many cases, it’s simply a matter of territory. A spider’s web is its home, and it will fiercely defend it from any perceived threats. This is especially true of female spiders, who are often more aggressive than males when it comes to protecting their territory.

Reasons Why House Spiders Fight

Spiders are remarkable creatures. They can be found in nearly every corner of the globe, and they come in a staggering array of shapes and sizes. Despite their differences, spiders share one key trait: they are all skilled predators. In fact, spiders are so successful at hunting that they sometimes run into conflicts with other spiders. These conflicts can take many forms, and these are:

Territorial Disputes

Territorial disputes often occur when two spiders stumble upon each other’s web. If one spider feels that its territory has been invaded, it will usually attempt to chase the intruder away. In some cases, however, the two spiders may end up fighting for control of the web. These fights can be fierce, and they often end with one spider being killed or forced to abandon its web.

Many times, territorial disputes arise because spiders mistake each other for prey. For example, a spider may build its web near an area where other spiders are known to hunt. If a spider wanders into another spider’s web, the owner of the web may mistake it for prey and attack. In some cases, these attacks can be deadly.

They rarely tolerate each other’s presence and will fight to the death if necessary. This has been proven in many studies done in labs.

Mating Rituals

Mating rituals are another common cause of conflict between spiders. These house spiders are vying for the attention of the female spider. The two may engage in a battle for dominance. The victor of these battles will typically be allowed to mate with the female spider, given that the female spider is receptive.

two spiders mating


Cannibalism is not common among spiders, but it does happen. In some cases, a spider may be so hunger-driven that it will attack and eat another spider. These attacks are usually unprovoked and are often motivated by the need for food.

While male house spiders typically hunt as part of their mating rituals, female spiders often attack and eat other spiders before they mate. This provides them with the energy they need to produce eggs.

The male spider feeds the female spider during this time to ensure that she has the strength to lay her eggs. The black widow spider is an exception to this – instead of attacking before they mate, black widows will often kill and eat the male spider after they have mated.

Hunt for Food

By nature, spiders, even the ones you commonly see in your bathtub, are omnivores. Their diet primarily consists of insects, but they are known to eat smaller spiders, lizards, and even birds. In some cases, two spiders may come into conflict over a meal. These conflicts can be deadly, as the spiders will fight for the chance to eat.

spider eating a house fly

There are also other cases where there’s a scarcity of food. If house spiders can’t find enough food, they may start to fight each other for what little there is. These conflicts can quickly turn deadly, as the spiders will become desperate and ravenous.

How Do House Spiders Fight

Although their techniques may vary depending on their size and species, here’s what an average fight would look like.

When two spiders meet, they’ll usually start by trying to intimidate each other. They’ll rear up on their hind legs, raise their front legs in the air, and wave them around threateningly. This is to show the other spider who’s boss.

If the intimidation tactics don’t work, they’ll start biting and clawing at each other. These bites can be painful, and they often break the skin. In some cases, the spiders will also release venom into their opponent’s body.

This venom can be deadly. The fight will usually continue until one spider is forced to retreat or is killed. In some cases, both spiders may end up being killed.

How Can Two Spiders Live Together?

Despite the fact that spiders often fight each other, there are some cases where they can live together in peace. These cases are usually the result of one spider being significantly smaller than the other. In these situations, the larger spider will typically allow the smaller spider to share its web.

It’s also not uncommon for spiders to coexist in areas where there’s an abundance of food. This is usually only possible if the spiders are of different species and there is plenty of food for both of them. If the spiders are of the same species, it’s more likely that they’ll end up fighting each other for territory or mates.

Social spiders, on the other hand, are more likely to live in harmony with each other. These spiders live in large colonies and work together to build their webs, hunt for food, and care for their young.

They are generally smaller than other types of spiders and don’t pose a threat to each other. But despite their small size, them working together allow them to build larger webs, giving them the opportunity to take on larger prey.

Final Thoughts

House spiders, although they do not pose any threat to humans, often fight with each other. They are cannibals and often fight for territory – especially the males during mating season. Black widows are an exception to this, as they typically kill and eat the male spider after mating. As solo hunters, house spiders will also fight each other for food.

These fights can be deadly, as the spiders will become desperate and ravenous. In some cases, two spiders may be able to coexist if there is an abundance of food or if one spider is significantly smaller than the other.