Daddy Long Leg Spider Facts
How to Identify Daddy Long Leg Spiders
True Daddy Long Legs spiders aren’t spiders at all. These arachnids, similar to the mite and tick family are prevalent in the fall during harvest time, giving them the name harvestmen. They can be nuisances in the fall because of their clustering habit and an unpleasant, defensive odor they emit.
Unlike spiders, which have two main body sections, harvestmen only have one. However, like spiders, harvestmen do possess eight legs and harvestmen legs are much longer than spiders’ legs.
Daddy Long Leg Spider Behavior
Contrary to popular beliefs and urban legends, Daddy Long Legs, or harvestmen, are harmless to humans and they do not possess venom glands. Harvestmen live in fields and forests, in tree trunks or on the ground. Harvestmen, with no venom glands like spiders, eat a wide variety of foods, including: aphids, caterpillars, beetles, flies, mites, small slugs, snails, earthworms, spiders, other harvestmen, decaying plant and animal matter, bird droppings and fungi.
The harvestmen’s super long legs play an important role for these arachnids, as they function as their sensory organs. Harvestmen legs, especially the second pair, serve as ears, nose, and tongue; research indicates they may also function as supplementary eyes. Chock full of nerves and thousands of tiny sense organs that lie inside microscopic slits in the legs, losing a leg for daddy long legs or harvestmen can be fairly serious.