What can be done about large spiders infiltrating the cottage?
There are probably several species of spider finding their way into the cottage, including the forest spider, Dolomedes tenebrosus, first cousin to the dock spider.
Both spiders have a body size of more than three centimetres, but the dock spider has a longer leg span. Unlike the dock spider, the forest spider will overwinter in the crack of an exterior wall. If the forest spider follows the wrong crack and ends up inside the cottage, come spring it can’t problem-solve its way outside. So it ambles around your cottage, looking for food. These spiders don’t like being stuck inside with you any more than you enjoy having them ambush you in the shower stall. They tend to shrivel and die indoors, or eventually find their way out.
Spiders aren’t about to form a posse and attack you in the night. Their tendency to bite is low and they won’t come after anything big because they don’t want to get hurt. And since they are predators, spiders hunt other creepy-crawlies in your cottage.