It was in an open bag of compost that I was filling pots with.
Yuk my hand may have touched it!
It's quite big, but not as big as shown - maybe half an inch across.
Looks like a tick of some sort with that big swollen belly, but more likely it is a spider as it was found in compost in the greenhouse, where there are no animals, not even birds.
This is the UK, anyone recognise it?
It looks a lot like a woodllouse spider. If so, they have a painful but harmless bite. As the name implies, they eat woodlice so maybe your compost has some critters in it other than the spider.
Nice looking spider though.
go to Bug ID request online - here's the link http://bugguide.net/bgimage/user/37935
It for US and Canada - but maybe the folks there can steer you clear for UK Bug ID
Looks like a tic, but it has 8 legs, so must be a spider.
Where do you live in UK?
Hi Claire, I'm in Scotland - it is a woodlouse spider, thanks to hubbers who responded earlier in this thread
Well, It can stay in Scotland, apparently they bite. Nothing nasty though.
I'm glad none of those live around here! I appreciate and have an interest in most wildlife, excluding spiders and most insects.
What on Earth is a googlebot doing in your greenhouse!?!
It is indeed a woodlouse spider and while it has a painful bite it is not poisonous. They do get in compost from time to time especially if their are a lot of little critters in their. If your adding meat to your compost I would not. Especially in summer.
The woodlouse spider will feed on other available small insects if the wood lice is not available.
I know looks can be deceiving, but it certainly doesn't look very friendly!
Well hey thanks guys!! I've never heard of the woodlouse spider, but yes there are loads, tons, millions of woodlice around.
Ahh, so they do bite?
I've got a severe but as yet unidentified allergy to the bite of some insects. Need to watch that in case it has brothers and sisters.
Thanks a million, you've been a Godsend! I need to know these things and it would have taken me hours to find out what it was by Googling it alone.
I see these often. They are sooooo cute!
We are awaiting your hub about the Woodlouse Spider and how to tell the difference between it and a Googlebot.
Ugh...it looks repulsive. Some spiders actually make me gag.
Looks like a tick, too.
oh ick... now I have the heebee geebees! Spiders are so creepy to me. Makes me glad I don't live in the UK.
Hate to tell you, but this spider also lives along the eastern seaboard of the USA as an introduced species.
Makes you wonder who introduced it?? lol
Went across on the Mayflower with the Pilgrim Fathers? I have never encountered one of these before and am in no hurry to meet one!
I'm the opposite, I want to find it again so I can take a video recording.
HP hasn't got a woodlouse spider video, although there are quite a few on Youtube.
Would make a good experiment to find out whether or not HP's videos really are competitive.
Good luck with that Izzy. Do you think that it came in on the compost or found its way in there? If it was an import, you could always try buying another bag of compost at the same place and see if there are any more stowaways?
The BBC says they can be found under logs, do you have a log pile?
I generally like spiders, but this is a very strange looking one.
The compost it was found in has a checkered history. It was a bag of good quality rose compost, can't remember the name at the moment, but it might have been John Innes.
It belonged to a small local commercial growing company who sadly went bust, and told me to help myself to the remains of plants, compost and pots from their industrial greenhouse site, 3 years ago, or it might have been 4 years.
These bags of compost had been stored for a long time, and were already bursting when I got them.
They then lay in Dad's garden for a year or so, before this one got moved into the greenhouse and opened.
It has lain there ever since, unused but open, allowing the soil at the very top to dry out, but not further down, strangely enough.Maybe there is a rainwater drip overhead.
As this seems to be the first woodlouse spider found in this neck of the woods (I'm in Kintyre which is almost an island, so when wildlife finds its way here, it has almost certainly been imported), the question is did it come with the compost (as a baby perhaps), or did the last growers import it with plants they were growing (even from England).
This spider was big and fat, so probably a female. Has she had babies? Was she pregnant?
There are bound to be more around anyway.
Need to watch out for them, and not handle compost with my bare hands.
And no, no logs (but plenty trees), but I just found a toad in the garden too, sheltering under a black plastic sheet covering yet more bags of compost, and I'm told they like logs too.
Well that's you next hub sorted - 'wildlife I found in my garden'
This thread is so funny. Lol. But I am scared of critters or googlebots, whatever. Stay out of compost is a lesson for day.
Ooo! I and my buddy Phil -- the jumping spider with the dashing green mandibles that keeps appearing in my house -- must compliment you on an excellent spider photo.
You know you've been writing for the web too long when your first reaction to an unusual spider is, "stay put, cutie, I need to grab my camera so I can make a webpage about you!"
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