Entomology (Study of Bugs)/Identification

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Question
brown spider
brown spider  
Hello,

I am shopping around for answers to an age old question I've had since childhood.  There is a large brown spider that lives in my area and I'm assuming most CA.  I am unable to find it anywhere on the internet.  I am curious what it is called and its venom level.  I have never been bit by one (thankfully) but they grow to at least a quarter size!  

Thanks for your time.

Answer
Chris,

Color patterns alone are not very reliable for spider ids. Accurate ids usually require microscopic examination. So, short of sending a specimen to a university like UC Davis your best option (since this is a good photo) may be to submit the photo to bugguide.net along with some location data (more specific than just CA). Someone there may be able to make a good guess.

Jack DeAngelis

Entomology (Study of Bugs)

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Jack DeAngelis

Expertise

I can answer questions in any area of entomology (study of insects, spiders, mites, ticks, and other terrestrial arthropods). Contact me about home and garden insects, insects that bite and sting, and insects that damage homes such as carpenter ants and termites.

Experience

20 years as university extension entomologist, now retired; currently publish a website about home and garden insects.

Publications
see www.livingwithbugs.com/resume.html

Education/Credentials
Ph.D. in Entomology

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