It seems that every home/garden in the UK has around 30 resident spiders, making a total of more than 750 million of the dear little things in the country.
According to the first public survey recorded by hundreds of members of the public, the most common species seems to be the garden cross spider and in Nottingham 150 of these were recorded in one garden alone, whereas, in Norfolk, one house seemed to be the home of 43 common house spiders.
A new world record may also have been set in Lancashire by a spider’s web measuring 15ft across – now that is a formidable piece of weaving.
It is, of course, at this time of year that we become more aware of spiders – large house spiders are just starting the dating game. However, female garden cross spiders - being perhaps a little more promiscuous - are already getting fat with eggs.
The spare bathroom in the CFZ house certainly seems to have a thriving arachnid population – it is not used much as a bathroom these days due to it having been turned into a makeshift ‘rodent’ room a couple of years back. Since then it does not get the same attention from a duster as the other rooms in the house and seems to have become a kind of spider commune in its own right. Each resident seems to be in competition with its neighbours as to which can produce the biggest web and catch the most delicate of meals. Luckily, no-one here has a phobia about such things.
According to Sarah Henshall of Buglife: “Spiders are amazing animals that live fascinating and useful lives”. Hmm try telling that to my youngest daughter who has a distinct and very loud phobia of such creatures.