As its scientific name suggests, the Antilles pinktoe (<i>Avicularia versicolor</i>) changes color as it matures. The spider’s abdomen turns from blue to pink or red and the carapace becomes metallic green. This juvenile Antilles pinktoe was photographed at the Henry Doorly Zoo in Omaha, Nebraska.
As its scientific name suggests, the Antilles pinktoe (Avicularia versicolor) changes color as it matures. The spider’s abdomen turns from blue to pink or red and the carapace becomes metallic green. This juvenile Antilles pinktoe was photographed at the Henry Doorly Zoo in Omaha, Nebraska.
Photograph by Joel Sartore, National Geographic Photo Ark

10 Beautiful Photos That Will Make You Love Spiders

As Halloween approaches, we put together our favorite photos of arachnids around the world.

Although many people suffer from at least mild arachnophobia, scientists are divided over the precise cause.

Some researchers attribute fear of spiders to an evolutionary survival instinct. In Africa, hundreds of thousands of years ago, our ancestors lived alongside several species of venomous spiders, whose bites, even if not fatal, could incapacitate an individual for days or weeks.

Other scientists say arachnophobia is a learned behavior, due to a childhood trauma or kids observing their parents and siblings getting freaked out by spiders.

Fortunately, arachnophobia is treatable. One study found that subliminal exposure to photographs of spiders could reduce people’s apprehension. (Also see "Tarantula and Bug Petting Zoos Help People Conquer Fears.")

Perhaps it also wouldn’t hurt to appreciate the astonishing beauty of these creatures—which you can now do in this photo gallery—just in time for Halloween.

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