Carolina Wolf Spider Sighting in Arkansas

While walking a county road near the Ouachita National Forest in Arkansas, I came across a large spider in the roadside weeds. After some research, I was able to identify it as a Carolina Wolf Spider, one of the biggest species of wolf spiders found in the United States.

Carolina Wolf Spider
Carolina Wolf Spider

The Carolina Wolf Spider can grow up to 1.5 inches long and is usually dark brown with gray markings on its legs and body. This formidable hunter is known for its speed and agility when catching prey. While native to the southeastern U.S., its range extends all the way to Arkansas.

Despite their scary looks, Carolina Wolf Spiders are not dangerous to humans. Their venom is mild and their bites only cause temporary pain. They are also not aggressive unless threatened. These nocturnal spiders hunt using their excellent sight and hearing, stalking silently before striking prey rapidly. They then wrap their catch in silk and eat at their leisure.

In Arkansas, these spiders can be found in gardens, fields, forests, and around homes, as they are drawn to insects near lights at night. While startling if encountered, the best way to remove them from your home is through gentle relocation back to the wild using a cup or container.

Though they appear spooky, Carolina Wolf Spiders are fascinating creatures that play an important role controlling insects in the Arkansas environment. Next time you spot one, take a moment to appreciate this specialized hunter before safely relocating it outdoors.

Gear Used:

  • Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II
  • Lens: Canon EF 100-400 mm f/4.5-5.6 L IS II USM
  • BlackRapid Camera Strap


  • Location: Near the Ouachita National Forest (Arkansas)
  • Date and Time Taken: August 22, 2016 (07:04:58 A.M.)
  • Aperture Priority
  • Aperture: f7.1
  • Shutter speed: 1/400 sec. (as determined by the camera)
  • ISO: 800
  • Exposure Compensation: +1/3
  • Focal Length: 400 mm

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