Spiders are like nightmares for many, but there are people who are passionate about things that others don’t like. A scientist’s passion for peacock spiders has led to the discovery of seven new species of “cute spiders.”
Peacock spiders are eight-legged arachnids that are beautiful, colorful and playful. They do not behave like regular spiders but are believed to exhibit behavior that cats and dogs do. Until recently, there were only a small number of species discovered in South Australia where it belonged to, but the number of species discovered has already been confirmed to reach 48. Sydney-based biologist Jurgen Otto started serving enthusiasm about the arachnids with the discovery of a new set of “cute spiders.”
The passionate discoverer came across one during his visit to the Ku-ring-gai Chase national park located in the north of Sydney. Following this encounter, he published a paper that contained details about six other new species. “I’m always looking on the ground when I walk around, mostly for mites and other small things, and I almost stepped on this little spider. That’s what started my passion,” Otto told The Guardian.
“They’re fairly cute, which is why people are attracted to them,” he added. “They behave very differently to how people think a spider does … they behave more like cats and dogs, moving around, perceiving and reacting to their environment.”
The details about the discovery were published in the international jumping spider journal Peckhamia on Sunday. The scientist studies about mites most of the time at the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources. Hence, he compared the new species with mites. “By comparison to mites, these spiders are actually quite large,” he said as quoted by Metro. “It’s all relative.” “If you know what you’re looking for, you can find them. But I have to be careful not to lose them – particularly the babies – and not to squash them.”