Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Arachnophobic entomologists: When two more legs make a big difference

Date:
September 16, 2013
Source:
Entomological Society of America
Summary:
For some entomologists, an apparent paradox exists: despite choosing a career working with insects, they exhibit negative feelings toward spiders which range from mild disgust to extreme arachnophobia.

For some entomologists, an apparent paradox exists: Despite choosing a career working with insects, they exhibit negative feelings toward spiders which range from mild disgust to extreme arachnophobia.

An article in the next issue of American Entomologist features the results of a survey involving 41 arachnophobic entomologists who were asked questions about their fear of spiders. Although most entomologists had low scores (indicating mild disgust or mild fear), they still claimed to react differently to spiders than to insects. On the other end of the spectrum, some respondents scored in the clinically arachnophobic range and react to spiders in an almost debilitating manner.

Some of the arachnophobic and arachno-adverse entomologists developed their negative feelings toward spiders in childhood, well before choosing a career in entomology. These feelings were not overcome in adulthood.

"The results of the study show that arachno-adverse entomologists share with arachnophobes in the general public both the development of response and the dislike of many of the behavioral, physical, and aesthetic aspects of spiders," said Rick Vetter, author of the article. "Paradoxically, I found that despite the great morphological diversity that insects exhibit and despite years of professional exposure to insects, these entomologists do not assimilate spiders into the broad arthropod morphological scheme. However, for the most part these entomologists realized that their feelings could not be rationally explained. Through the mere existence of the study, several of them took solace in learning that they were not alone with their negative spider feelings."

"Vetter's study illustrates how the fear of spiders found in some entomologists may have roots in negative events that happened in childhood," said Gene Kritksy, editor-in-chief of American Entomologist. "This gives us insight on how to lessen this fear in future generations. If parents have a genuine interest in the natural world, including spiders, and they share this positive interest with their children, it could reduce the incidence of arachnophobia in the long run."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Entomological Society of America. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Entomological Society of America. "Arachnophobic entomologists: When two more legs make a big difference." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 16 September 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/09/130916091214.htm>.
Entomological Society of America. (2013, September 16). Arachnophobic entomologists: When two more legs make a big difference. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/09/130916091214.htm
Entomological Society of America. "Arachnophobic entomologists: When two more legs make a big difference." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/09/130916091214.htm (accessed October 20, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Monday, October 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Raw: Rare Lion Cubs Make Debut at Belgrade Zoo

Raw: Rare Lion Cubs Make Debut at Belgrade Zoo

AP (Oct. 17, 2014) Two white lion cubs were born in Belgrade zoo three weeks ago. White lions are a rare mutation of a species found in South Africa and some cultures consider them divine. (Oct. 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Best Foods To Boost Your Mood

The Best Foods To Boost Your Mood

Buzz60 (Oct. 17, 2014) Feeling down? Reach for the refrigerator, not the medicine cabinet! TC Newman (@PurpleTCNewman) shares some of the best foods to boost your mood. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Sweet Times for Hard Cider Makers

Sweet Times for Hard Cider Makers

AP (Oct. 16, 2014) With hard cider making a hardcore comeback across the country, craft makers are trying to keep up with demand and apple growers are tapping a juicy new revenue stream. (Oct. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Meet Garfi the Angry Cat

Meet Garfi the Angry Cat

Buzz60 (Oct. 16, 2014) Garfi is one frowny, feisty feline - downright angry! Ko Im (@koimtv) introduces us to the latest animal celebrity taking over the Internet. You can follow more of Garfi's adventures on Twitter (@MeetGarfi) and Facebook (Garfi). Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins