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Joro spiders may look big and scary, but they're actually harmless

They're native to Asia, but started showing up around Georgia a few years ago.

MACON, Ga. — You know it's an uncomfortable feeling when you walk out on your porch in the morning with a cup of coffee and run smack into a spider web.

However, Kyrie Hugdahl doesn't mind that too much at all.

"Spiders are so cool and they're vital to our environment," she said enthusiastically.

Kyrie is with the Museum of Arts and Sciences, and she sees how much some folks don't like bugs.

"In one of our programs, we had a tarantula and people would get up and run out of the room," she recalled.

You might think a hefty fella is a threat too. Big spiders with black, yellow, and red are Joro spiders.

They're native to Asia, but started showing up around Georgia a few years ago.

Some people confuse them with banana spiders, but the banana spider actually has a bigger body. 

Joro Spider webs can span 10 feet or more, and are very intricate. 

It turns out, they're only deadly to mosquitoes and other pests in your greenery.

"Some people say that their fangs are so small you won't even feel it, but they're venom is not harmful to humans," Hugdahl said with a smile.

Kyrie says they'll try to stay our of your way, but if one appears on your walkway and you have to move it, try this.

"Get a stick be very gentle and just move the web to the side and go about your day," she reasoned.  "They are going to stick around they may rebuild that web again in the area and that's when you get that stick again and slowly and eventually they'll move on to somewhere else."

Just relax, and know a Joro, despite it's monster like appearance, isn't going to harm you at all. 

Unless you're a bug or mosquito, and then you may want to watch your back. 


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