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Invasion of giant house spiders in Northern Ireland but fear not they're harmless

By Staff Reporter

Published 25/08/2016

A spider caught by Cathy Cole
A spider caught by Cathy Cole
Suzanne in Bangor spotted this creature
Danielle Tweed saw this spider on the front door of her house in Bangor
Hannah Robinson spotted this creature in Newtownabbey
Aidan Quinn captured this spider
Aidan Quinn captured this spider
Jamie Cordy found this creature in his living room
Paula Billington caught this spider in a glass
Roberta Montgomery captured this spider in her bathroom in Garvagh
Dee Kenny in Kells found this spider in a sink
A spider found by Harti Marron
Paula Pennie found this spider in Ballymena
Paula Pennie found this spider in Ballymena
Ruth Jordan captured this spider
Joanne Henderson found these two bugs in Lisburn
Liam Killen caught this eight-legged creature
David Hefferon found this spider in his kitchen
David Hefferon found this spider in his kitchen
A spider found by James Cunningham
Teresa Gill found this spider in her garden
Carla Macklin came across this bug in Antrim
Carla Macklin came across this bug in Antrim
A spider found by Joanne Parker, from Glengormley
Lee Adams found this spider
Julia Evans found a spider the size of a tennis ball
A spider found by Kyla Brown
Elsa McCready in Bangor spotted this spider
A spider spotted by Sharon McCallion in Castlederg
Martine Delaney in Belfast found this spider
Martine Delaney in Belfast found this spider
A big found by Tracy Stopford in a caravan in Castlerock
Thomas Kidd found this creature in north Belfast
Denise Fowler came across this spider in east Belfast
A spider found by Caol McHugh
Spiders found by Pauline Trusdale in Bangor
Spiders found by Pauline Trusdale in Bangor
Andrew Magowan found this spider at his work in Belfast
Andrew Magowan found this spider at his work
Alison Moorhead found these creatures at her home in Tandragee
Alison Moorhead found these creatures at her home in Tandragee

With autumn on the way, giant spiders are invading homes across Northern Ireland.

Belfast Telegraph journalist Kirsten Elder caught one eight-legged creature at her Newtownards home this week.

She wrote: "Found this in the kitchen sink and set him free.   Bigfoot could still be in garden."

<Have you spotted a giant spider? Send your pictures and videos to us here>

Twitter has also been filled with Northern Ireland users sharing their terrifying tales of late night encounters with mega arachnids.

One person in Londonderry said: "Heard my sister scream in her room, ran in and there was a huge spider on the wall so I ran out and downstairs."

And another commented: "If I see ONE more spider in my house I'm actually moving out." The end of August usually sees an increase in large house spiders as they start to look for a place to live over winter, and as it is mating season, male spiders are also on the hunt for females.

It is thought that there are around 400 spider species in Ireland - but thankfully all of them are harmless.

Paul Hetherington from Buglife, an organisation aimed at "saving the small things that run the planet", previously told the Belfast Telegraph that people should do the decent thing and remove arachnids from their homes humanely, rather than killing them.

Mr Hetherington explained that people had nothing to fear, and he gave advice on how best to escort the creepy-crawlies from their homes or workplaces.

"There are no spiders that are venomous or capable of biting through human skin in Northern Ireland, so there is no reason to be fearful of these excellent catchers of flies and other less useful animals," he said.

"I would urge those who feel compelled to remove spiders to do so humanely, and to release them into an outside environment.

"A glass and a sheet of paper is a long tried-and-tested way to remove unwanted arachnids."

He added that spiders did not necessarily seek out warm, dry houses. In fact, they prefer damp, cool outhouses and cellars.

Experts say arachnids play an important ecological and environmental role.

And, of course, without them there would be more flies around to bug us.

Belfast Telegraph

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