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Breeding Season Set To See 150 Million Spiders Invade British Homes

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Breeding Season Set To See 150 Million Spiders Invade British Homes

Just went you thought it was safe to go back in the cupboard...

An invasion of giant spiders is set to hit the darkest corners of Britain this autumn, reports the Sun.

Around 150 million, give or take a few, of the spider species Eratigena atrica are set to spawn on British shores as the spider breeding season begins, with the creepiest of creepy-crawlies taking advantage of a surplus of summer flies to spread themselves around the nation.

The Eratigena atrica spider is a particularly large breed, growing up to 7.5cm in size. In fact, they are commonly known as the Giant House Spider, due to their size and their proclivity for taking root in dwellings and human habitations.

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Credit: Donald Hobern/Flickr

If you suffer from arachnophobia - and if you don't, then what on earth is wrong with you? - then you need to start taking precautions, according to experts.

"Spider's don't specifically want to enter your home, in fact, they'd rather stay away as there's less food and it's too dry and clean," Simon Garrett, Bristol Zoological Society's Head of Conservation Learning, told the Sun.

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"It is the need to mate that changes their behaviour."

The logical conclusion of that is that, to keep the eight-legged freaks from the door, you need to tidy up and maintain cleanliness to decrease the chances of spiders making their habitat in your habitat.

Experts in pet control would also encourage sealing up cracks in doors and windows to give the spiders a less obvious route into the house, while also limiting the numbers of flies (and thus spider food) by not having plants near the exterior of your home. "Some will move into a house if there is an entry point for them," confirmed Simon Garrett.

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Credit: Donald Hobern/Flickr

Malcolm D Welshman, a naturalist, attributes the growth in spider populations to the larger numbers of summer flies that exist at this time of the year, which in turn provide more food for the spiders and encourage them to breed and breed.

"It's boosted their population - hence 150 million are now on the march indoors as the spider-nesting season starts," he told the Sun.

The Eratigena atrica is a particularly bold form of spider and will not be as phased by the idea of entering a human dwelling. Now you know what you need to do to keep them out.

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Of course, it is possible that you might want to welcome them in - I for one welcome our new spider overlord.

Featured Image Credit: Martin Cooper/Flickr

Topics: Spiders, UK

Mark McGowan
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