A-z - Animals

Banana Spider Size Comparison

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Banana spider size comparison to human hand tarantula
Banana spider can refer to several different types of spiders, but Cupiennius is the most common one, and it's also the largest!

© AZ-Animals.com

This banana spider's relatively small size is not for the faint of heart. After all, while spiders are cool little creatures that are an important part of the ecosystem, you might find yourself a bit squeamish when you're dealing with one as big as a banana spider.

The common name "banana spider" refers to the genus Cupiennius . There are 11 different species in this genus, which we will discuss. Banana spiders are quite impressive in size.

How big is a banana spider?

banana spider
Banana spiders have legs up to 3.9 inches long!

© Arcaion/pixabay – License

Overall, banana spiders are medium-sized spiders found in Central and South America. Their name comes from their habitat, which usually surrounds banana trees that are common in warm and humid regions. As a result, larger species of banana spiders are sometimes found all over the world because they were accidentally transported with bananas.

Imagine going to the grocery store and seeing one of those spiders on your produce!

In terms of size, the body of the banana spider can range from 0.35 inches (9 mm) to 1.6 inches (40 mm). However, their legs are much longer – some nearly 3.9 inches (100 mm) long! They have a furry brown body, although some species may have brightly colored areas on the body, especially the mouth.

Speaking of mouths, banana spiders are venomous. Although they are most commonly called banana spiders, their other common names include hunting spiders, due to their tendency to hunt prey rather than build webs. The venom, which is the human equivalent of a bee sting, allows them to easily capture and eat their prey.

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11 Species of Banana Spiders Including Cupiennius

  • double spot muscle
  • China
  • Kocineu
  • cuba
  • Leafy
  • Getazi
  • Pomegranate
  • remedy
  • Saree
  • Valentine's Day
  • Voodoo.

Kubinius Getazi

Because of their popularity as specialty pets, Cupiennius getazi are one of the best-known species in the genus. They are also one of the larger species, with females growing up to 1.5 inches (38 mm). Their legs can also be as long as 3.9 inches, allowing this banana spider to grow several inches from hind paw to front paw.

Due to the size and color of banana spiders, Cupiennius they are often mistaken for Phoneutria spiders. These are very dangerous spiders, especially compared to banana spiders. A bite from a banana spider can cause short-term discomfort, while a bite from a Phoneutria spider can quickly become a medical emergency.

Human hand and banana spider size comparison

Banana spider size comparison to human hand tarantula
Banana spiders can be bigger than a human child's hand!

© AZ-Animals.com

Human hands can come in many different sizes, from infants to adults. However, unless you're looking at a young baby, it's usually larger than most spiders — including banana spiders.

For a 6-year-old female, her hand may only be 4.4 inches from the fingertips to the area where the palm meets the wrist. Her index finger is about half of the total length. So while a banana spider is no bigger than a 6-year-old's hand, its legs alone can be bigger than her fingers. The largest banana spider was only a few centimeters the size of her hand.

Some larger species, including their legs, can exceed 5 inches. In this case, they are often even larger than the largest average child's hand.

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The body of the smallest banana spider is even smaller than most fingernails! The average human nail is about 12 millimeters long, nearly a third larger than the body of the smallest banana spider.

The average hand length for an adult male is 7.6 inches. This makes it almost twice the size of the largest banana spider and 21 times the size of the smallest. It's the same as standing alone next to half a giant redwood tree!

Tarantula and Banana Spider Size Comparison

Mexican red knee tarantula isolated on white background.
Tarantula is one of the largest spiders in the world

© Pixel Memoirs/Shutterstock.com

There are more than 1,000 species of tarantulas, each with a unique shape and size, resulting in a wide variety of critters.

The Trinidad pygmy tarantula is one of the smallest tarantula species. They are common as pets, but they can also be found in the wilds of Central and South America, like banana spiders.

The largest Trinidadian pygmy tarantulas do not exceed 2 inches or so. Males of this species are half the size, so there is a significant difference between the two. This means that the smallest tarantula is still larger than the largest banana spider at its largest size—at least in terms of size.

Banana spiders are probably larger than tarantulas when legs are considered, as their legs are almost twice as long, or even larger!

The largest tarantula species in the world is the giant bird-eating tarantula. If one of these spiders shows up in your home, you can't miss it. Their bodies can grow to nearly 5 inches, and their legs can be more than twice that length. This means their legs are almost 3 times the length of a banana spider.

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The giant bird-eating tarantula is also large enough to measure. They typically weigh around 6.2 ounces, about the same as a 2011 Amazon Kindle, three tennis balls, or two onions. That might not seem like much until you remember you're talking about a spider!

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about the author

megan martin


I'm a writer with almost five years of experience. I recently graduated from Wingate University with a BA in English Literature and a double minor in Biology and Professional Technical Writing. I love everything to do with animals and nature! The American kestrel is my favorite animal, but I also love sharks and alligators. In my free time, I enjoy watching documentaries and exploring nature.

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