I don't know about you, but I really can't stand creepy crawlies. There are some bugs that creep me out, some that freak me out, and some that downright scare me. Spiders, for example, scare me.
Why, then, would I allow what I consider to be one of the world’s scariest bugs to exist in my yard?
Well, for starters, I am a homeschool mom. Things that would have been power washed or swept away in years past are now lessons in science, nature, and ecology.
Don't get me wrong. Mister Spider causes me to #BugOut nearly everytime I see him. My heart races, and I feel compelled to run. very. fast. and. shriek. like. a. kid.
Did you know that the Orkin Ecologist lists the top ten bug phobias known to man, and that Mister Spider (arachnaphobia) tops the list? Yup. Seems I am not the only one that wants to scream bloody murder when the eight legged nemesis moves at lightning speed toward me. Eeek!
Of course, Orkin has spent 100 years studying insects– they evey have scientists on staff to make sure they stay on top of their game in their work– and know that understanding insects is crucial to developing the best methods of pest control. They wanted to share the wealth of their knowledge, so they set up The Ecologist. The Ecologist celebrates the unique nature of insects and educates visitors about the importance of the insects in our ecology as well as which ones to be wary of.
<–My visit to The Ecologist brought this big guy to my screen… which is the only place I'm comfortable seeing him. OH MY!
(image credit: The Worlds Scariest and Deadliest Insects)
Seriously, though, the Orkin Ecologist site is a great educational resource and I'll be using it in our homeschool science lessons on insects.
It was to Orkin that I turned when I first heard that my little nemesis Mister Spider was a Hobo Spider and that he was not only aggresive but also poisonous. It turns out that is a misnomer. They usually defend themselves only when provoked or threatened and are not considered a medically threatening spider, contrary to popular belief. That is fortunate for Mister Spider, because it allowed him to live.