NEWS
21/10/2018 2:05 AM IST | Updated 21/10/2018 3:26 AM IST

Massive Spider Webs Completely Cover Greek Beach In Surreal Photos

Lake Vistonida has become a temporary spider paradise and arachnophobe’s nightmare.

Striking photos from northern Greece’s Lake Vistonida this week show a landscape totally blanketed in thick, massive spider webs.

Alexandros Avramidis / Reuters

Apparently, unusually warm weather is to blame ― or credit, depending on how you look at it ― for the phenomenon. Warm temperatures lead to an uptick in mosquitoes and gnats, i.e., delicious spider food.

“It’s caused by an overpopulation of spiders ... there is an abundance of food available,” biologist Euterpe Patetsini told Greek media outlet Alpha TV, per Agence France-Presse.

Alexandros Avramidis / Reuters
Spider webs overlaying shrubs at Lake Vistonida.

The webs currently span about a kilometer or 0.6 of a mile, according to Quartz. Photos show the webs blanketing plants, as well as manmade structures like fences and small religious shrines.

Alexandros Avramidis / Reuters
A veil of spider webs cover this religious shrine.

The tiny spiders responsible for the striking webs are members of the Tetragnatha genus, arachnologist Maria Chatzaki told CNN when a similar situation happened last month in the town of Aitoliko in western Greece.

Greek biologist Fotis Pergantis told CNN at the time that when the temperatures drop, the gnats will start to die off and the spider population will decrease as well.

See more eerily beautiful photos from Lake Vistonida below.

Alexandros Avramidis / Reuters
A roadside religious shrine covered in webs.
Alexandros Avramidis / Reuters
A gray-white blanket of spider webs.
Alexandros Avramidis / Reuters
A person walks amid the massive spider webs.
Alexandros Avramidis / Reuters
A close-up of spiders as the sun rises behind them.

Correction: A previous version of this article misidentified Maria Chatzaki as an archaeologist. She is an arachnologist.