Sunday, May 19, 2019
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Incredible Insects!


Explore the fascinating world of insects! Incredible Insects takes you on a journey like no other, to far away places that you can find right in your own back yard! Learn all about them and then try to BE THE BUG yourself!


Realistic, gigantic sculptures of bugs with wings outstretched fill the air as you enter the gallery. Magnificent butterflies so large they will capture you in their shadow, astonishing beetles more than four feet long, and a dragonfly with wings that stretch six feet across are waiting to greet you.

The impressive and scientifically accurate sculptures are brought to life through playful, brightly colored and whimsical graphic novel panels. “Big Ideas” are made approachable and engaging for visitors of all ages. Each model will have a corresponding cartoon character to help tell their stories.







This exhibition is intended to provide a foundation of knowledge for the complex study of insects. With broad brushstrokes, a grand overview of all things bugs is provided, with scientific accuracy and whimsical engagement utilized throughout. The visitor is encouraged to inquire further, and look beyond the exhibition experience itself by building upon the knowledge gained as soon as they exit the gallery. After all, insects are all around us, all the time, and there is no end to the opportunities to learn about them!


General Bug Topics:

 • Bug Basics: What is an insect? What makes it an insect? How many different kinds of insects are there?

 • Anatomy BUILD A BUG interactive. FAST FACT: Their organs are the same as ours, just arranged differently. THE EXTREMES: largest, smallest, fastest, loudest

 • Orders

 • Similarities

 • Differences

 • Habitats: Largest land animal in Antartica (the entire CONTINENT!) is a wingless midge….about 1cm

 • Their place in the world: Why should we care?


These topics will be graphically represented. In addition, video loops, touchable bug models and other multimedia experiences will further illustrate the learning opportunities.


Interactive Opportunities


TBD, but to include:

 • Large Motor:

 • Can you jump as far as a grasshopper? a flea? a springtail?

 • Roll a “dung ball”

 • Are you as strong as an ant?

 • Small Motor:

 • Build-a-better-bug

 • Insect order sorting game

 • Be the Pollinator

 • Touchable Insect Model Body parts

 • Multimedia:

 • Video footage of insects in flight, representative of species present in the sculpture collection 

 • Touch screen interactive


Total list of included sculptures


Scientific, 10X-20X magnification

• Mantis/Ant species at entrance signage

 • (2) seven foot long ants, mounted to pillars orwall surfaces (species: Atta sexdens and Eciton burchelli)

 • (3) butterflies (Agehana maraho, Triodes mallgellanus, etc)

 • (4) Beetles (Cheirotonus spp, dorcus curvidens, aeolesthes spp, dynastes spp)

 • Dragonfly (Anatogaster sieboldi)

 • Lantern fly (Fulgora watanabe)

 • 20 blue morpho butterflies (Morpho peleides Kollar), fifteen inch wingspan each, in their own freestanding display mural

 • (15) Insect heads, mounted to a panel, to showcase the biodiversity of insects.








Topic by Area/Sculpture


Hanging Insects: Stag Beetle, Dragonfly, Lantern Fly 

Winged Wonders

This area will explore the dynamic and fascinating world of insect flight.

 WHY do they fly? Aside from the obvious ability to get from place to place, flight also impacts the livelihood and survival of insects in unexpected ways.

 HOW do they fly? An exploration of the mechanics of insect flight. Direct and indirect musclepowered flight will be explained, with an opportunity to BE THE BUG (TBD)!



A section devoted to Butterfly Wing Scales will answer questions such as, what makes their color? Why do butterflies need scales on their wings? Can they fly with out the scales?



BE THE BUG Opportunity: TBD


Wall Mounted Insects- Dynastes, Cheirotonus, Aeolestes 

Incredible Exoskeletons: Wall-mounted Dynastes can focus on the protective wing coverings of beetles in general as a survival mechanism as opposed to the wings of butterflies and moths. And just WHY the pliers-like head? Have you ever eaten the stuff of exoskeletons? (Most of you have!) INCREDIBLEINSECTS16 

Amazing Antennae: Wall mounted Aeolesthes sp. Communication? Perception? Protection? Why would antennae like these be useful? We would also touch on how many insects like these beetles can chirp if disturbed. A comb and rasp interactive allows one opportunity to Be The Bug.


Chierotonus (Long Arm Beetle): Wall-mounted opportunity to discuss adaptation. WHY does this beetle have such crazy long arms? Does it have to do with attracting a female like a Peacock’s tail? If your arms were this long, you could reach the cookies without any problem!  INCREDIBLEINSECTS18


Other Wall Mounted Panels- Will include insect heads that illustrate the diversity of adaptations insects’ mouth parts have to feed on different food supplies. Potential interactive opportunity could be determining which mouth part would be best for eating various food stuffs.


Whimsical (Stylized) Diorama: Social Insects 

A soil cutaway reveals the secret societies of insects hidden beneath the forest floor. The whimsical and playful designs in this section of the exhibit become the three-dimensional representation of the graphic novel “characters” that have carried the Big Ideas throughout the exhibit. We will also meet the ants and termites, who are the big movers and the shakers of not only their world but ours as well. They are responsible for moving great quantities of biomass and the conversion of matter to make it available to the ecosystem.




Floor Activities- With the minimal use of free standing furniture, many opportunities arise for floor-based interactives for curious children and adults alike. Ideas may include an overstuffed cloth ball of “dung” that children can try to roll around with their legs, measure your jump against a grasshopper’s, a crawl-through ant tunnel, etc.








Space Requirements: 2,500 square feet minimum

Availability: Spring 2019 Rental Fee: Call for details


Mia Schillace Nelson

Outhouse Exhibit Services, Inc.

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Ants and termites are the movers and the shakers of the world. They are responsible for moving great quantities of biomass - the conversion of matter to make it available to the ecosystem.

Termites: bioavailability

Ants: Soil aeration






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