"Invasion of the False Widow Spider Media Stories!"

"Spider sightings may be up, but experts say it's due to a reaction to the media frenzy, not an explosion in their population."

"The false widow spiders have been especially busy this week. It's only Wednesday, and the little terrors have already exploded someone's leg, turned someone into an alien and – on a more serious note – shut down a school.

But according to experts, the spate of sightings is simply because the media frenzy around the spiders is making us more aware of them. As the headlines mount up, more and more of us will recognise the creatures in our homes, gardens and even schools.

Noble false widow spiders (Steatoda nobilis) first came to the UK in 1879. Although they have been spreading north over the past 15 to 20 years, there is nothing to suggest their numbers have rapidly increased over the past few months – as the recent boom in news stories might suggest."

Mark Riley Cardwell reports for the Guardian October 24, 2013.

Source: Guardian, 10/24/2013