Monday, 2 November 2015

Population of UK’s largest spider is increasing says charity

October 30, 2015

Population of UK’s largest spider, the fen raft spider, is increasing steadily thanks to a highly successful translocation project, the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) has revealed.
The increase in numbers of these spiders has been pegged as a success by Strumpshaw Fen nature reserve – a feat that was achieved in just three years after the spiders were first released in the reserve in 2012. According to officials at the reserve, they have already spotted over 480 nursery webs this season (July-October), compared with 184 in 2014.

Efforts of RSPB and Strumpshaw Fen nature reserve officials have helped spiders achieve a more secure position as a UK species and this is due to the excellent condition of the habitat and management of the grazing marshes at the nature reserve says Tim Strudwick, RSPB Site Manager at Strumpshaw Fen nature reserve.

The fen raft spider is a striking creature with a dark body and cream stripes down the side; they are very large and females can sometimes reach up to the size of the palm of a hand and prefer ditches and pools in chalky wetlands.

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