Anatidaephobia. This is a fear of a certain bird. A certain unsuspecting, seemingly cute and innocent bird we have been taking for granted.
Yeah, the duck. They seemingly come across very innocent and cute or adorable when they are ducklings (but then again what animal at its early life isn’t cute.). An animal I do not really care for myself. I really think they are obnoxious, loud and aggressive. But regardless, I am not petrified of them, which in hindsight makes me not an ‘anatidaephobic’, a phobia which is reportedly the fear of ducks. Rather understandable when you think about it, there are phobias for pretty much anything imaginable.
The word Anatidaephobia is derived from Greek word ‘Anatidae’ which means ducks, geese or other water fowls, and ‘phobos’ is Greek for dread/fear. So far so good right? Easy to follow?
But this is where it turns weird and it will probably make you scratch your head in confusion. ‘Anatidaephobia’ more specifically isn’t the fear of ducks or water fowls in general (seeing and hearing), it is the irrational fear of a duck watching you from somewhere in the world. You probably read that sentence over twice or three times just to make sure. I definitely had to. So if you have this fear you can pretty much forget about watching any daytime television sponsored by Afflack, watching a game of hockey in Anaheim or even participating in a childhood game of d*** d*** goose.
Luckily for those who thought their were enough crazies in the world already, this fear is fictional. Created by Gary Larson, an infamous cartoonist from Texas who had his ‘Far Side’ cartoons published in over 1,900 publications over a 15-year period.
Gary was also the instigator of coining the phobia called ‘Luposlipaphobia’, an irrational fear of being chased by wolves while wearing socks on a recently waxed floor. Clearly the guy was creative and had a sense of humor.
So to answer the question is ‘anatidaephobia’ fact or fiction. The answer is fiction for the most part. Irrational and nonsensical fear like these do exist, but, in essence, the fear can be broken down in few ways. Anatidaephobia can also be called or referred to as ‘ornithophobia’ the fear of birds. An actual phobia which is recognized by psychologists all around the world (and something Scarlett Johansson suffers from. So lads you know how you can be her knight in shining armor). From there the anxiety portion of the phobia, the ‘duck watching you from somewhere in the world’, can be an extreme form of anxiety or a type of social phobia. The phobia which associates with people watching or judging you. The phobia generally affects ones’ social and performance situations.
But be wary next time you see a duck, it may hypnotize you by looking at you and create an irreversible phobia. But then again be aware of these ‘Chinese turkeys’, they can potential attack you from any angle. By air, water and land. So keep vigilant!