This New Study About Creepy Crawlies Living In Your Home May Freak You Out

Right now, your home just may be teeming with any of more than 500 different kinds of insects, spiders, mites, centipedes and other creepy crawlies.

That’s according to a study published Tuesday in the journal PeerJ. In the study, researchers discovered a high diversity of small invertebrate animals called arthropods in several Raleigh, North Carolina, households — and they say it’s very likely that similar results would be found in houses across the country.

The researchers are already spreading their massive bug hunt to other cities around the world, such as San Francisco and large towns in Peru and Sweden, Dr. Michelle Trautwein, an entomologist at the California Academy of Sciences and a co-author of the study, told The Huffington Post.

“There will certainly be variation in houses in different geographic areas, but you can be sure they all have arthropods,” she said. “Even as entomologists we were surprised to find so much diversity indoors. We were also surprised by how few pest species we encountered. Most of the bugs in our houses are quiet, harmless roommates.”

The researchers surveyed 50 homes from May to October in 2012 and collected all of the arthropods that they could find, dead or alive. Each house averaged around 100 species, Scientific American reported, the most common being ants, carpet beetles, cellar spiders and cobweb spiders.

“Nobody had done an exhaustive inventory like this one, and we found that our homes host far more biodiversity than most people would expect,” Dr. Matt Bertone, an entomologist at North Carolina State University and lead author of the study, said in a statement.

“While we collected a remarkable diversity of these creatures, we don’t want people to get the impression that all of these species are actually living in everyone’s homes,” he added. —> Read More