What kind of spider makes a tunnel web – funnel web spiders in Arizona

brown grey spider in a tunnel web

This medium sized light brown spider with dark stripes built his tunnel web in our aloe and cactus plants.  Funnel web Spiders are known for their tunnel looking, funnel shaped webs.

webs that look like tunnels
Funnel Web Spider has a tunnel

These spiders are found all over the world.  There are over 600 species of funnel-web spiders, belonging to the Agelenidae family.

web with a hole in it like a tunnel
spider web looks like a tunnel

We have several species of aloe desert plants on our property which the funnel web spiders seem to keep occupied.  It is a fact that funnel-web spiders prefer moist environments.

brown grey spider in a tunnel web
funnel web gray brown spider

Funnel web spiders are shy and come out at night.  It was a cloudy day around the Tucson area and I was able to spot this arachnid repairing their web.

web with a hole entrance
spider tunnel web with an egg sac, funnel web
Funnel Web Spider
Funnel Web Spider carrying a large egg sac

The broad funnel shaped web, looks like a tunnel ( see photo below )  and is made by the spider to connect to their burrow.  When an insect enters the web the spider feels the vibrations and rushes out from the narrow end to bite its prey and inject it with venom.

fennel web
the web that looks like a tunnel

The Arizona funnel-web spiders are NOT the same as the deadly Australian Funnel-web spiders, Atrax robustus, and are NOT dangerous to humans.

  • The Australian Funnel-web spider is in the family Hexathelidae.
  • The Arizona Funnel-web spider is in the family Agelenidae.

If you were bitten by SEVERAL funnel web spiders the venom could make you very ill and you should see a doctor.

fennelweb spider
funnel web spider

Identifying a funnel-web spider:  These spiders have distinctive grey and brown stripes and patterns.

webs that look like tunnels
funnel web spiders make tunnel webs

Funnel web spiders have long legs with little bristles and small eyes in 2 rows of four.

Funnel web spiders have been mistaken Wolf spiders.  When identifying a wolf spider remember wolf spiders DO NOT spin webs.

spider with long legs
Wolf Spiders do not make webs
skinny spider with long legs
Wolf Spiders have smaller abdomens

I am not crazy about spiders but they are very important to the ecosystem and health of our planet.

Author: tjsgarden

We are a family that loves the Arizona Desert. A lot of research and team efforts go into our articles and photos. Come discover the beauty and mystery with us. Don't forget your sunscreen!

12 thoughts on “What kind of spider makes a tunnel web – funnel web spiders in Arizona”

  1. I have seen more funnel web spiders in Wickenburg, Arizona than in past years. Are there circumstances that make them more prolific than other years? Such as temperatures, rain fall, etc…


    1. In general spiders only live 1 year. Only the female Funnel Web spider makes the web. Her eggs will hatch every spring. Now the temps in your area may have been warm enough for the hatchlings to start the spider cycle early this year. Funnel Web spiders are good for the garden! Thank you for commenting and we hope this was helpful.


  2. Your spiders seem pretty clearly of the genus Sosippus, which makes them Lycosidae, not Agelenidae. There’s some great papers by Allen Brady, who’s the guy to talk to for these. I particularly liked “When identifying a wolf spider remember wolf spiders DO NOT spin webs.” Oh, Sir, but they do when they’re wolf spiders of the genus Sosippus ….


  3. Very good blog you have here but I was wondering if you knew of any message boards that cover the same topics talked about
    here? I’d really love to be a part of online community where I can get feedback from other knowledgeable people that share the same interest. If you have any suggestions, please let me know. Thanks!


  4. Urrrrrg..I’ve got a hello Vera plant in my lounge…I’m gonna go and check it out.. I’s been finkin, tell mez wot ya finks.. Yor blog is so interesting..even if I don’t like spiders..bol I want my bloggers to come and visit youz..Can I put youz on my blog to send them over ??? if ya don’t like the idea’s I don’t mind..I’m not very good at sharin anyway.. 🙂
    hugs Mollie xx00xx


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