You Got Bugs in the Home? (Answer: Yes, more than you know.)

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If you’re reading this at home, you are currently surrounded by arthropods — invertebrates with exoskeletons and jointed legs. But just how many spiders, crustaceans and other creepy crawlies live in the average American home? Until now, that question has been difficult to answer.

A new study published in the scientific journal PeerJ seeks to change that. Unsatisfied with mere speculation about the types of arthropods that coexist with humans, entomologist Matt Bertone and his colleagues decided to find out for themselves. So they headed to 50 homes within 30 miles of Raleigh, N.C.

This was no ordinary census. Armed with knee pads, headlamps, tweezers and vials of alcohol, groups of entomologists scoured the superficial surfaces of each home, putting at least one of each different type of bug they could find in a vial to analyze later. They came away with over 10,000 arthropods of all sizes.

About Scot McKnight

Scot McKnight is a recognized authority on the New Testament, early Christianity, and the historical Jesus. McKnight, author of more than fifty books, is the Professor of New Testament at Northern Seminary in Lombard, IL.