Daddy’s long legs to swarm houses after summer leaching has created fertile ground


The BRITS are warned that a Crane Fly Plague is hatching this fall – after a cool, wet summer creates ideal breeding conditions.

Billions of two-inch-wide, slender-limbed bedbugs – commonly known as Daddy Long Legs – rise in large numbers from their underground nests and out of their burrows.

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Daddy Long Legs set to take over UK homes this fallCredit: Alamy

Families who leave windows and doors ajar risk insects flying and flying into the living room.

The good news is that the creatures are completely harmless and don’t sting.

But that’s bad news for farmers because an insect’s larva before it hatches – also known as leather jackets – nibbles at the roots of wheat and other crops.

They are also known to destroy carefully manicured lawns and flower beds, and indirectly cause mayhem because birds, especially crows and crows, love to eat larvae and peck the ground to dig them up.

The origin of their name is not known, but some people believe it may have come from the name of a novel called Daddy Long-Legacy, written in 1912 by Jean Webster.

The book is about a young orphan who has an anonymous benefactor whom she calls Papa Long-legacy because he is very tall.

The name “Daddy Long Legs” is used to refer to several different spiders, most commonly a crane fly, cellar spider, and reapers – however, the crane fly is not actually a spider.

The Sun recently reported the nine best spider catchers to buy as you prepare for possible infestations this fall.

Facts about daddy’s long legs

  • Once they hatch and take flight, they only live for two weeks – they mate and die within days.
  • They are an important source of food for birds, beetles and spiders
  • They can do good or harm – their larvae eat rotting plant matter and help recycle nutrients in the soil
  • It is believed that adults do not feed during their short lifespan
  • Some people think daddy’s long legs are poisonous, but they can’t bite humans
  • Crane flies do not have venom, but the name daddy-long legs is also used for spiders known as cave spiders, which have venom glands, although it is not known whether they are harmful to humans


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