With rare exceptions, spiders do not eat fruit. The vast majority of spiders are carnivores and eat mostly insects and bugs. They will drink the juice of fruits in certain circumstances, mostly because they need moisture for their bodies. The exception is the Bagheera kiplingi, a vegetarian spider found in Central America that eats mostly acacia shrubs and leaves.
Even if spiders suck on the nectar of fruits, they are only doing it because they need to stay hydrated. Because of this, they will suck on any type of fruit and do not have a favorite.
Even if they are dehydrated, they will only get enough nectar to rehydrate themselves and no more. Spiders always consider this nectar to be a small part of their diet, mostly because they are only consuming it because they need it.
If you’ve ever wondered if spiders eat fruit, the answer is—only when they need to for hydration purposes.
When they do need hydration, they will eat any fruit that is available. This means they don’t really have a favorite fruit since they are only sucking the nectar out of it to rehydrate their bodies.
The foods spiders eat depend on the size of the spiders and what they have access to. Small spiders can only eat small bugs. If the spiders are inside, their diet consists of bugs that are small enough to make it into your home.
This means that indoor spiders typically eat things such as fleas, flies, roaches, ants, and earwigs. If the spider is outside, and if it is the right size, it may be able to eat bigger insects.
Spiders drink fruit juice to keep themselves hydrated. Spiders do not have teeth or other organs necessary to eat the fruit. This is why they suck the juice of these fruits instead of eating them.
They also do not have the right organs to eat and digest fruit, which is another reason they suck the nectar instead. Spiders essentially eat all of their meals and snacks in liquid form. This is out of necessity, just like consuming fruit juice is sometimes a necessity for them to stay hydrated.
Another interesting tidbit is this: spiders cannot chew or even swallow their food. This is why they make their food as soft as possible first.
To do this they inject a type of venom into their prey, and this turns the prey into a liquid form and paralyzes it at the same time.
Then, the spiders use what they have to suck in all of the liquid. This is what they do to fruit when they need it. They never eat the fruit but will suck up the nectar, and now you know exactly how they do it!
Spiders do sometimes like to visit your fruit bowl, and you can sometimes find them in store-bought fruit after you get it home. This is more common in grapes than any other fruit.
Farmers will sometimes use spiders to eat the pests that tend to attack their fruit. Farmers have two choices when it comes to keeping pests from eating their growing crops: chemical repellents and biological or natural repellents, meaning spiders that kill pests.
Farmers often send their fruit to grocers just as it is after harvest, and if the grocery stores don’t clean their fruit before putting it on the shelves, you can easily find a few spiders once you get the fruit home.
But think of it another way. It isn’t just that the spiders, which were put there intentionally by the farmers, are still in the fruit. The more “organic” the fruit is—the fewer pesticides found in the fruit—the more likely it will be attractive to spiders.
The best way to keep spiders away from fruit is to clean the fruit once you get it home and use methods that get rid of spiders in general.
Spiders are usually there to eat other pests and to occasionally drink the nectar of the fruit. The chances are slim that the spiders you find in your fruit will cause you any concern.
Spiders will not eat your fruit, but they will occasionally suck the nectar out of it when they need to rehydrate their bodies. This is the most damage they will cause to your fruit, but if you wash your fruit well, this should be a problem only occasionally.
I am an accredited practicing dietitian, experienced gardener and a dedicated cook. I love writing and sharing my experience so you can learn from my successes and mistakes.