Can you eat daddy long legs?

In this article, we will answer the question “Can you eat daddy long legs?”, and what are daddy long legs?

Can you eat daddy long legs?

Most people would get away with eating daddy long legs without any unpleasant effects. Their venom is not toxic for humans and other animals but it is always good to take precautions. Plus, like other arachnids, daddy long legs have an awful taste.

What are daddy long legs?

Daddy long legs are known for their long and thin legs with their small body that can be colored brown or pale cream. These cosmopolitan spiders belong to the tangle web spider group. 

Daddy long legs protect themselves from intruders by making fast-spinning motions which makes it difficult for the potential hunter to see them. 

Sometimes, under the threat of danger, daddy long legs may cut one of its limbs to get out of the predator’s sight as quickly as possible. 

To trap fellow insects, they spin at a distance until the opponent insect cannot defend itself due to being fully caught in the silky web

Habitat 

They are very common in urban areas and you must have acquainted yourself with daddy long legs in your house many times before. 

They like to make thin, tangled webs in small sheltered areas. They are mostly seen hiding behind doors, in sheds and garages, the ceiling corners, and under furniture, etc.

Distribution

Daddy long legs go by the scientific name of Pholcus phalangioides. Currently, they are most common in Australia but they originated in Europe. 

Feeding and diet

Daddy long legs prey on its fellow spiders and other insects that fall into its web trap.

Danger to humans 

Daddy long legs can indeed kill the Redback Spider but it is certainly not because of a potent venom because there is no scientific study that shows that daddy long legs have toxic venom.

The myth that the fangs of daddy long legs are incapable of rupturing human skin was debunked when it was shown in a test on the US television show that their tiny fangs (about 0.25 mm) can easily pierce the human skin.

But the stinging sensation is harmless and transient. However, if the singing persists or any other worrisome symptoms appear, one must seek medical attention immediately.

Types of daddy long legs 

There is not only one type or species of daddy long legs. They come in a variety of species that belong to different classes. 

Despite such diversity, there are only 3 types of daddy long legs that we commonly encounter in our homes or surroundings. 

One of them is an araneomorph spider, and the other belongs to the harvestman species. The former is scientifically known as pholcidae while the latter is called Opilione arachnid in the scientific world. 

Last but not least is the winged spiders that can fly as well. They go by the scientific name of Tipula oleracea. They are sometimes referred to as craneflies. Their family name is Diptera.

Daddy long legs myth 

The myth that the venom of daddy long legs has been debunked. Their fangs, despite being short, can penetrate human skin but the bite won’t be lethal. Perhaps, daddy long legs do not see us as dangerous.

Daddy long legs do have venom glands but it is hardly effective against its spices. Some studies have shown that the venom of daddy long legs is only venomous for the other insects and spiders.

Can the daddy long legs harm pets?

Pets are likely to eat insects but you do not need to fret about anything if you suspect that your dog or cat has eaten daddy long legs. 

The bite of daddy long legs is not dangerous for mammals so you can relax. However, if you notice any adverse reaction from your pet dog or cat, you need to immediately get in contact with your vet.

Are granddaddy long legs and daddy long legs the same?

Yes, both of these names are used for the same insect. These names are also often used for crane flies and cellar spiders. 

Common names often create confusion, that’s when the scientific names come into play. A more accurate way to describe and identify these arachnids is harvestmen. The term Harvestmen helps distinguish between daddy-long legs and crane flies or other spiders.

Are daddy long legs spiders or insects?

Daddy long legs or harvestmen are arachnids. Insects have six legs and three body segments unlike the eight legs and two body segments of the harvestmen. Spiders and scorpions only eat liquid food while daddy long legs can also eat solid food.

Conclusion

In this article, we answered the question “Can you eat daddy long legs?”, and what are daddy long legs?

References

https://australian.museum/learn/animals/spiders/daddy-long-legs-spider/
https://www.bhg.com.au/are-daddy-long-legs-poisonous

Hello, I'm Sana Ameer. I'm a student of Food Science and Technology at UVAS. I like to bake and I aspire to become a Food blogger.