Exotic species of spiders are making their homes in the UK according to a coven of dandruff-ridden, spotty, four-eyed anoraks writing in the latest issue of the Arachnid Stompers Weekly.
Researchers believe arachnids and a myriad of other tropical insects arriving in imports of food and plants are now able to survive and spread thanks to the UK's climate going completely tits-up and England being classed as semi-tropical. Well, this week anyway.
The new inhabitants include an African species of false widow spider (aka the Adulterer or Bigamist spider : one whose 8-legged husband is actually still alive) Some entomologists believe the deadly black widow spider could be next to invade, searching for fresh husbands to embalm and suck the life juices out of once they've had their typical wicked, feminine way.
Conservation group Buglife wants import rules to be strengthened to stem the tide of alien species invasion which has coincided with the UK being swamped with semi-skilled plumbers and decorators from Europe.
Barry Stagbeetle, director of Buglife, told BBC News "Other countries in the world take great care about what biological crap they allow in, because it can contain pests that can damage our goods, our livelihoods, our health and our biodiversity. Look at all the Polish bricklayers and Albanian swan-roasters sneaking in here and the damage they're doing to our great British traditions and the environment."
However, Sir Miles Offcourse, spokesperson for the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs 'Yeast Logic' department said that a new strategy was in place to "tackle the threat to the UK's native biodiversity from unwanted pest species which have 'hitchhiked' into the UK on plants and a wide variety of unscrubbed African and Asian refugees".
When asked to elaborate on this 'new strategy' Sir Miles promptly complained of stomach cramps and a migraine and pissed off sharply.
John Chrysalis from the British Arachnological Society said his organisation had experienced a vast increase in the number of enquiries about "strange spiders" being found in people's baths".
One new inhabitant is Steatoda paykulliana, aka the Swaziland Pitbull spider, a native of Southern Africa, which weighs in at about 5 kilos / half a meter in length and can rip the head off a Pembroke Welsh corgi with a single snap of its mandibles.
While this spider had been spotted in the UK in the past no colonies have been recorded since the RAF nuked the last batch on the Isle of Wight two years ago, wiping out the entire human population in the process and rendering the island uninhabitable for the next 50,000 years.
However Dr. Daniel Dungpucker, head of the Insect Identification Service at the Natural History Museum, said this was no longer the case.
He informed reporters "We have recently discovered webs of the Swaziland Pitbull spider all along the south coast, from Minge Point to the River Merkin and established well into the New Forest too. It looks as if it's here to stay unless we get one of our famous British cold spells to wipe it out. Another Ice Age perhaps, or something similarly exciting".
The arrival of exotic spiders and insects that had hitched a ride on various imports was not a new phenomenon, said Dr. Dungpucker.
"If there was a warm period they would be able to survive, but a cold snap would kill them off," he explained.
"But now, our increasingly warm climate is starting to suit many more spiders - very aggressive ones too - and once they come in, they are able to stay put. A bit like the Poles and Albanians and vulgar Bulgars etc."
Steatoda nobilis is one such spider that fits Dungpucker's classification of aggressive.
Known to entomologists as the Asbo Spider, it is thought to have first arrived in the UK from the Mediterranean in the 1960's.
For decades it remained in a small area within Devon, but about 15 years ago it began to spread, in various mutated forms, and can now be spotted all across the UK, being colloquially known as a Hoodie or Chav spider.
Dr. Dungpucker emphasised "It has a nasty stabbing bite - and some people can have a bad reaction to it, such as dying".
The Mutton spider (Segestria florentina), another non-native biting specimen, has also been on the move this past year, spreading from the South Coast much further north to the Shetlands. It is a large spider, measuring up to 1.5 meters in length with green iridescence on its jaws and can often be spotted somewhere along the M1 / M6 motorways route heading north to the Scottish Highlands.
When asked by an incredulous media why it was known as the 'Mutton spider' Dr. Dungpucker replied "Because it eats sheep, silly".