Millions of giant spiders are set to invade UK homes, experts warned this week.
The warm autumn weather has provided bounteous food supplies for spiders, in the form of flies and bugs. And as the mating season arrives, many will wander into people's homes in search of a partner.
Professor Adam Hart, an entomologist at the University of Gloucestershire, explains: "This year has seemingly been a good one for the invertebrates that spiders feed on."
Lawrence Bee of the British Arachnological Association says it means spiders are "appearing a little bigger than average perhaps".
Falling temperatures will also lead spiders to find warmth indoors. But until autumn they will stay on their webs, until they leave to find mates.
However, experts said that we should welcome the creatures into our homes.
"They often feed on the most common species, preventing a few species from becoming dominant," professor Hart told the Mirror.
"We want to encourage people to respect and learn more about their little house guests."
Arachnophobes who would rather not share their homes with the eight-legged creatures are advised to sweep them up and put them in a covered outside space like a shed.
The vast majority of spider species in the UK are not venomous, but if one has the misfortune to be bitten by a poisonous specie, it is unlikely to lead to anything worse than a rash.
"The house spider can give you a nip but only if you disturb it or pick one up," says Stuart Hine, of the Natural History Museum. "The venom has a negligible effect. Even the bite of the False Widow — the most venomous spider in Britain — is not as bad as a bee or wasp sting."