People Are Freaked Out Over Viral Photo Of "Flying Tarantula"

People Are Freaked Out Over Viral Photo Of "Flying Tarantula"

A viral photo of a "flying tarantula" has people talking and with good reason!

The picture is enough to get anyone with arachnophobia the heebie-jeebies.

It all started when a photo of the species was shared by Reddit user u/XXXNASTECION in the Reddit subgroup r/nope.

They added the caption, "Antheraea Polyphemus, basically a tarantula with wings."

While it almost looks like it could be photoshopped, the creature is real.

"That HAS to be from Australia," one person commented, but it's actually one of the most "widely distributed" large silk moths found from southern Canada down into Mexico and in all of the lower 48 states (except for Arizona and Nevada), according to the University of Florida.

Naturally, people freaked out over the moth due to its uncanny resemblance to a tarantula.

The moth species typically grow between 4 to 6 inches long, with a wingspan that stretches up to 6 inches and features a unique, distinct pattern.

While some photos of the moth are certainly startling, there are other pictures that show the moth in a different, and arguably cuter, light.

"Asking for my safety: would a shotgun slug be enough to kill that thing?" someone asked, and it's a fair question. Thankfully, the moth is virtually harmless to humans, so if you see one in real life, you have no cause to worry.

Malorie Thompson

Malorie works as a writer and editor in Northern California. She's passionate about food, conscious living, animal welfare, and conservation. She's worked with a variety of publications in different sectors but is happiest covering topics close to her heart. When not at her laptop, Malorie can be found enjoying picnics on the beach, hiking in the redwoods, and spending time with her rescue pup, Jax.

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