from the book, "Our Fascinating Earth"
Although the tarantula is rather fearsome in appearance and size, it is actually quite docile. Its bite, which is quite rare, is less painful and dangerous than a bee sting. If it does bite, the pain comes more from the bite itself than from the venom. Yet humans have an almost unnatural fear of these creatures. This is clearly exemplified by a recent incident in San Francisco.
Having been plagued by a string of robberies, the owner of a jewelry store resorted to desperate measures to avoid bankruptcy. He placed a number of rather large live tarantulas in his showcase window facing the street. He also put a sign in the window with a warning for all to see: "Danger! This area is patrolled by tarantulas."
Not surprisingly, the robberies ceased almost immediately.