Giant house spiders are invading British homes following wet and warm summer

Species can grow as large as 12cm across

Rose Troup Buchanan
Saturday 22 August 2015 22:19 BST
A giant house spider creating an egg sack
A giant house spider creating an egg sack

Bad news if you are an arachnophobe: giant house spiders are probably invading your home at this moment.

The arrival of large house spiders, affectionately referred to by one expert as the “golden retrievers” of the spider world, occur every year - but they are nothing to concern Britons.

The warm weather enjoyed across the UK in the past months has contributed to an accelerated growth of the house spiders, who despite their name, usually live outdoors.

Found across Europe, northern Africa, northern Asia and north America, males spiders migrate indoors to find a female at the end of the summer. The species can grow to be as large as 12cm wide.

Claire Rind, a reader in invertebrate neurobiology from Newcastle University, warned house spiders were “particularly big at the moment”.

“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," she told the IBTimes.

The spiders’ bite can be similar to a bee sting if the skin is pierced, but Ms Rind said this was unlikely as long as people did not antagonise the insects and treated them sensibly.

“The best thing is to put a container over them and scoop them up with a postcard and escort them out. The risk of a bite even inadvertently if you're in the garden is very small," she said.

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in