Spiders will be focus of Oct. 20 MDC virtual program

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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Spiders are creatures that many people don’t like to see, but it’s a good thing we have them.

People wanting to learn more about the benefits of spiders can sign up for the Missouri Department of Conservation’s (MDC) free virtual program “Spooky Spiders.” This online program will be from 10-10:30 a.m. on Oct. 20 and is being put on by the staff of MDC’s Springfield Conservation Nature Center. This program is for all ages. People can register at:


Missouri is home to somewhere around 480 species of spiders. It’s estimated approximately 11,000 spiders can be found in a typical acre of Missouri forest habitat and more than two million are in a typical acre of Missouri grassland habitat. Though many people have a high level of spider fright, MDC Naturalist Jordanya Raos will explain how the numbers listed above shouldn’t have people reaching for the nearest can of insecticide or a rolled-up newspaper. Instead – people should be thankful that many spiders are sharing the landscape with us. Spiders often consume at least one insect per day. Think about the bug problems we would have if there were not an abundance of spiders around us helping to control insect populations.

Though this program is free, registration is required. To participate, use the link above. Registrants must provide an e-mail, so a program link can be sent to them. This program will include a chat-based question-and-answer period where participants can interact with the presenters.

Staff at MDC facilities across the state are holding virtual programs. A listing of these programs can be found at mdc.mo.gov/regions.