One of the winners of the 2020 IgNobels was this study of attitudes in entomology.
Richard Vetter won an Ig Nobel for his paper looking at why people who spend their lives studying insects are creeped out by spiders.
His paper, “Arachnophobic Entomologists: Why Two Legs Make all the Difference,” appeared in the the journal American Entomologist in 2013.
Vetter, a retired research associate and spider specialist who worked in the entomology department at the University of California Riverside for 32 years, found during the course of his work that many insect lovers hate spiders.
“It always struck me as funny that when I talked to entomologists about spiders, they would say something along the lines of, ‘Oh, I hate spiders!’” he said in a telephone interview.
He found that many bug lovers had had a negative experience with a spider, including bites and nightmares. The fact that spiders are often hairy, fast, silent and have all those creepy eyes freaks out entomologists, he said.
Except…the entomologists I know are appreciative of spiders. Unless they’ve been lying to me, I don’t know that this is really a problem.
Besides, once you get to know spiders, everyone loves them.