A great deal of today’s world has been built on the shoulders of the ancient Greek civilization, where
concepts like democracy, law, philosophy and science were born and nurtured. Today the country
serves mostly as a travel destination for tourists coming from all around the globe. Thankfully,
Greece is good at that as well, provided its warm weather, numerous beaches and rich cuisine.
There is however, a town in the country that you wouldn’t exactly call a ‘tourists’ attraction. And not
because of its beauty – it’s actually called the little Venice of Greece because it’s floating in the sea –
but because of a weird and rather disturbing phenomenon that occurs every few years.
According to that phenomenon, this little Greek town called Aitoliko, floods with thousands of
spiders which drown the area in their webs and draw a hideous picture:
Bushes and plants along the sea shore where covered in spiders’ webs for as long as 300 meters.
Signs on the roads and branches on the trees looked like they had been taken out of the ‘Silent Hill’
movie – minus the ashes obviously. Big parts of houses resembled insects that were caught on a
The weirdest thing of them all, is that the locals didn’t seem to mind all that much. Perhaps they
already knew what the rest of the world found out by Ms. Maria Chatzaki, teacher at the Democritus
University of Thrace, department of Molecular Biology and Genetics:
“This behaviour we’re noticing at Aitoliko is not profound. It’s not the first time it’s happening”, she
noted. “It is a seasonal phenomenon that appears mostly towards the end of summer and the
beginning of autumn and it’s triggered by spiders of the Tetragnatha family”.
According to Maria, those spiders are small in size, but they have the ability to create massive
amounts of web fiber. Due to the dry weather in this area towards the end of summer and the lack
of winds, those spiders are able to create their nests without having to worry about strong winds
bringing them down. That, combined with a rise in mosquitos and other insects populations are
contributory factors to their short reign around the town.
As for the locals, they seem okay with having countless 8-legged brood mothers around them. That
could be first and for most because they know that they’re not dangerous; at least not to humans. In
addition, having a bit of extra help from mother nature when trying to get rid of mosquitos is not
bad after all.
So keep that in mind the next time you’re planning your summer vacation in Greece. A good time on
the beach could turn into a runaway from thousands of tiny creepy spiders, if you find yourself at the
wrong place at the wrong time.
Do you know any places where you live, where weird phenomena occur? Let us know in the