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Rare spider found in Norfolk

PUBLISHED: 16:00 21 September 2009 | UPDATED: 14:08 06 July 2010

The rare wasp spider

The rare wasp spider

A strange looking and rare arachnid has got Norfolk nature lovers in a spin.

The female spider wasp has been found at the National Trust's Horsey Windpump site at Horsey, near Yarmouth.

A strange looking and rare arachnid has got Norfolk nature lovers in a spin.

The female wasp spider has been found at the National Trust's Horsey Windpump site at Horsey, near Yarmouth.

It is only the fourth time that the distinctive species of spider has been recorded in the county since 2006.

Known as naturalists as argiope bruennichi, the spiders first appeared on Britain's southern coast in the 1920s and have slowly been spreading north due to milder weather.

The spider was found at Horsey Windpump's Breathing Places reserve, which was created last year and is now home to 25 species of butterfly, a wide array of insects and birds and grass snakes and Chinese water deer.

Stephen Prowse, National Trust warden at Horsey Windpump, said: “It is so exciting to find these spiders here in the new habitats.

“They are absolutely gorgeous creatures and it just goes to show that anything can turn up if you create a flower rich area like this.

“It is a credit to the volunteers who created this wonderful wildlife area.”

The Breathing Places reserve, which has a wildflower meadow, traditional orchard and sensory garden, was funded by the Big Lottery Fund in conjunction with the BBC.

t The five storey Horsey Windpump is open until November 1. For further information visit www.nationaltrust.org.uk/main/w-horseywindpump

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