UPPER WEST SIDE — Meet New York's newest eight-legged residents.
"Spiders Alive!", a new exhibition featuring about 20 species of live spiders, is crawling into the American Museum of Natural History on Sat., July 28.
"We hope to show people that arachnophobia is completely irrational," said exhibition curator Norman Platnick, referring to the fear of spiders.
The showcase will highlight the importance and diversity of spiders, as well as the need to study them in further depth. The museum holds the world's largest research collection of arachnids, with the exhibit including scorpions, tarantulas and orb-weavers. Staff will also be giving presentations to visitors and up-close views of live arachnids.
A number of children looked curiously at the spider tanks in a preview of the exhibit Tuesday.
Lindsey Zahn, 11, said she was afraid of spiders before visiting the museum. "I thought they could kill you," she said, before learning that most species of spiders are not poisonous to humans.
Dante Allen-Segev, 6, who climbed onto the huge spider model at the exhibit, said his favorite spider was the notorious Black Widow, with a red spot on its stomach.
"I like them because they're cool," he exclaimed.
"Spiders Alive!" runs through Dec. 2 at the American Museum of Natural History, 200 Central Park West.