Why frisky daddy long legs have started invading Hull homes

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Why frisky daddy long legs have started invading Hull homes

Giant daddy long legs will be crawling around our homes as the Autumn season approaches.

The end of September is the time of year where crane flies come in from the cold to keep warm in our cosy homes.

Although they only live for ten to 15 days, these little critters will be on the lookout for a mate so we could see plenty of them around.

Despite being completely harmless most people don’t want them in their homes and the best way to keep them from bouncing off your light bulbs is to close windows and doors

To keep them out of our homes the best thing to do is keep windows and doors closed.

Peter Boardman, from the Cranefly Reporting Scheme, said: “It’s ‘cranefly-in-the-house’ season again! The offender is called Tipula paludosa, the common daddy long legs, and is one of 338 types of craneflies that occur in the UK.

“Of course the vast majority of the 337 other species which range from 5mm to 60mm in size live their lives unseen by most people and it is therefore unsurprising that everyone thinks we only have this type of cranefly.

“The reason this species is so common is that they breed in soil amongst grasses, which range from lawns to all but the most sodden grassland, so a very common habitat.

“The larvae feed upon the roots of grasses but the adult Tipula paludosa do not feed at all as their mouth parts are very simple and incapable of eating, they can merely dab at fluids. “

He added: “They have enough energy contained within their bodies to see them through for about a week in which time they must mate and the females egg lay.

The larvae are known to gardeners as “leather jackets” and are sought out by many bird species such as starlings as nutritious food.

“They can occur in large aggregations and do significant damage to sports pitches etc but this is increasingly rare.

“Though still very common, drainage of agricultural fields, intensification, and pesticide usage has led to a decline in numbers.

“Craneflies are a very important food source of a lot of birds including the aforementioned starlings, golden plover, ruff, and even grouse are known to eat them if the opportunity arises.

“Some species of our larger, and more uncommon bats feed on them too.”

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