Massive spiders the size of a child’s hand are expected to arrive up and down the East Coast this spring by literally parachuting down from the sky.
Millions of Large Joro spiders – native to Japan but introduced to the US in 2013 – will move up north from the southern U.S., according to researchers from the University of Georgia.
The spiders tend to begin their life cycle in early spring, and turn into massive, fear-inducing behemoths by July. They are mostly spotted in July and August, as they may be too small to notice before then.
The spiders are unique in their ability to parachute down from the sky by spinning a web and putting it over their bodies, creating a parachute that lets them float down.
Researchers are not exactly sure how far north they will travel yet, but they note that these spiders can tolerate cold and thus won’t be bothered by the East Coast’s relatively chilly spring weather.
The good news? They’re not dangerous to humans. Sure, they may be terrifying, but they can’t actually hurt you. Joro spiders are afraid of humans and will try to get out of your way, and the venom they use to capture prey is completely harmless, unless you’re allergic to spiders.
In fact, you might just be glad if they do come to New Jersey. Joro spiders eat bugs that many consider to be nuisances, like yellowjackets and mosquitoes.