Species of spiders in North Carolina include crab spiders, wolf spiders, fishing spiders, black and yellow garden spiders, and black widows. Crab spiders get their name because they hold their legs crabwise. They are often colorful, and some can change color to match their surroundings.
Crab spiders don't spin webs but instead lay in wait for prey to pass. Some can wait for days. Similar spiders are called running crab spiders; they are distinguished from other crab spiders because their second pair of legs are their longest legs.
Wolf spiders are large spiders that hunt for their prey. They have gray, brown or black coloration and can be found outside in grass and under leaves. Fishing spiders resemble and are related to wolf spiders, but they are often found around water, which they can scuttle across in pursuit of prey.
Black and yellow garden spiders are large spiders that spin orb-shaped webs. They sit in the center of the web with their legs arranged in an X shape. They also spin a zig-zag structure known as a stabilimentum in the center of their web. As with many spiders, the female is much larger than the male.
The black widow is one of the very few spiders in North Carolina that is dangerous to humans. It is a glossy black spider with a red hourglass on its abdomen.