Would you kill a spider?
The beginning of autumn marks the start of “spider season”, as arachnids enter homes to find a warm space to mate and so begins the annual age-old debate: should spiders be killed or captured and released outside?
While arachnid experts suggest that house spiders should be trapped under a glass and freed rather than killed, many of us can’t stand sharing our homes with these 8-legged creatures.
London Zoo’s senior invertebrate keeper Sam Aberdeen said: “Spiders are a vital part of the global ecology and also reduce the numbers of flying insects in our homes and gardens, some of which can carry human diseases.”
“You can gently remove a spider that has strayed into your home this autumn by placing a glass over it and sliding firm paper or card underneath to form a seal, before taking it back outside and setting it free.”
Experts say that keeping your house clean and tidy is more effective at deterring spiders than common home remedies including peppermint oil, as they have not been scientifically proven.
Mr Aberdeen said: “It’s often said that conkers deter spiders, but it’s just not true.”
“Similarly, though they will keep your house smelling lovely and fresh, there is no scientific proof that essential oils such as peppermint, tea tree or lavender will keep spiders away either.”
Some species live alongside us in our homes year round, we are just more likely to notice them now, as they seek out mates and reproduce. There is also an influx at this time of year as they are attracted by the warm dry environment of our homes – coupled with the tendency to keep windows open as the weather is still relatively mild.
So if you are able to cope with them, spiders are very useful to have around the home as they will capture and eat insect pests and generally keep out of the way, preferring the quiet life in a dark corner.
Tell us how you cope with spiders in your home. Do you capture and release or do you kill them instead?
What are your views?
We'd love to hear your comments
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