When it comes to insects and arachnids there are few which can send a shiver down one’s spine as much as a spider. What’s worse than the average spider though? How about a giant spider the size of a mouse living in the dark crevices of one’s home?
I traveled to England earlier in the year and have to say it was an amazing trip. After reporting on this story, however, I’m a bit scared to go back, or maybe I just won’t visit the moderately sized market town of Macclesfield, located in Cheshire, England.
That’s because there have been multiple reports of giant spiders from the homeowners of this town, which is famous for their once-thriving silk industry. While at this time there are only a handful of reports, some homeowners are fearful that the spiders could eventually overrun the area, a frightening though when you consider that these things are the size of a human fist, or approximately 12 cm in diameter in many cases.
The spiders, which are referred to by experts as ‘giant house spiders,’ have been spurred on by the warm moist weather this summer. The weather has caused the spiders to grow in size as well as numbers, leading to an invasion of areas such as Macclesfield that homeowners likely didn’t expect. While the name of the arachnids infer that they live indoors, this typically is not the case. Usually the spiders live outdoors and at the end of summer the males venture indoors to track down females to breed with.
“I think because we’ve had a rather nice warm and wet summer, there have been plenty insects and other invertebrates that the spiders prey on, so they have come in rather early,” Claire Rind, from Newcastle University told IBTimes.
Although they are certainly frightening, with one Macclesfield woman claiming to have found three in her home, experts say that their bite is comparable to that of a bee, and that oftentimes their fangs are not even long enough to fully pierce the human skin.
“The best thing is to put a container over them and scoop them up with a postcard and escort them out,” explained Rind. “The risk of a bite even inadvertently if you’re in the garden is very small.”
Experts suggest that homeowners use peppermint oil to keep the arachnids at bay, or get a cat or two to hunt them down. They also say that a dirty home is a spiders home, as the creatures tend to hide in dusty and dark places.