Reasons to Celebrate Spiders this Halloween
Around this time of year, we always get calls from Herefordshire householders worried about spiders. If you’re worried about spiders, read on.
Why you shouldn’t be worried about spiders
In the UK our native spiders are not dangerous or a threat so although they can be a nuisance and many people have a fear of them, they are not something you should be concerned or worried about.
Reasons to love your spiders
Spiders eat flies - yes, spiders are your greatest defence against a fly infestation. And they eat other small bothersome insects in the garden making them a great natural predator for gardeners. Let’s applaud them for that!
Spider webs are beautiful. Have you ever looked closely at a spider web before? If you haven’t, we thoroughly recommend taking time to look. They are amazing, intricate patterns of silverly, lacey web they weave to catch their prey. In the morning dew they look simply stunning.
If you are worried a spider might be dangerous...
If you are worried that you have come across a species of spider that might be dangerous you can contact the Natural History Museum or your local RSPCA centre for advice. We’d point out that it is very rare in the UK to come across a dangerous spider.
How to get rid of spiders
The best way to get rid of a spider, the most humane and cheapest option is to place a small carton or glass over it and slide a piece of card between the carton or glass and the surface the spider is on. Then, take your spider and release it outside.
Lots of people have a fear of spiders (arachnophobia) so if you suffer from this, ask a friend, family member of neighbour to do this for you.
Spiders seem like they can move super-fast which probably accounts partly for some people’s fear of them. However, they are like the cheetahs of the insect world – they must stop for a breather after a short sprint and even flat out they can only reach speeds of around 1mph.
You CAN out-run a spider!
A note on the False Widow
The false widow receives a lot of bad press in the UK. Not to be confused by the black widow (an extremely rare species in the UK), they aren’t deadly. It can look big and scary but the biggest its body grows is to around 14mm and a bite from a false widow would be very rare.
Males are more prone to biting but this is usually only ever when provoked or trapped against skin.
If you should be very unlucky to be bitten by a false widow, you can be assured that it is likely to be no worse than a wasp sting.
Check out the Natural History Museum’s interesting article on the false widow spider: https://www.nhm.ac.uk/discover/how-dangerous-are-false-widow-spiders.html
Armed with these facts, you can be much more at ease with your spiders.
And finally, the money spider is said to carry great fortune if it sits on you so look out for these tiny shiny black spiders – we could all do with some good luck!