Dreaming of Flies

Listen to Today's Edition
Voiced by Amazon Polly

Dreaming is not exclusive to humans.

Dogs and birds dream and now, scientists have discovered that spiders can, too, CBS News reported.

A research team found that jumping spiders can enter a dream-like state during sleep, complete with rapid eye movement – known as REM sleep – the deepest stage of sleep that promotes health.

Because they couldn’t scan their brains, the researchers closely monitored a group of baby spiders while they snoozed at night.

In their study, they wrote that the arachnids would attach themselves to silk anchors before sleeping. The team would then observe “twitching and uncontrolled leg movements, coupled with actual retinal movements.”

“The way they twitched just made me think of dogs and cats dreaming,” lead author Daniela Roessler told National Geographic.

Roessler suggested that the little arachnids could be experiencing “visual dreams”, but cautioned that it will be “very difficult to prove that scientifically.”

Even so, the authors added that, if confirmed, the findings would mark the first time REM-like sleep has been identified in invertebrates.

And what could the little creatures have dreamed about? London zookeeper Jamie Mitchell told CBS that they were “dreaming about flies probably.”

Not already a subscriber?

If you would like to receive DailyChatter directly to your inbox each morning, subscribe below with a free two-week trial.

Subscribe today

Support journalism that’s independent, non-partisan, and fair.

If you are a student or faculty with a valid school email, you can sign up for a FREE student subscription or faculty subscription.

Questions? Write to us at [email protected].

Copy link