People Bugging Out Over UNL Insect Display

By: Chad Silber Email
By: Chad Silber Email

Hundreds of people bugged out Sunday afternoon on the UNL campus.

This day at the NU State Museum is unlike any other.

Six-year-old Amir Tarkian of Lincoln, says, "You can see all different kinds of beetles and you get to learn about them and it's fun.

Amir Tarkian and his family are learning all about insects. The "Sunday Afternoon With the Scientists" program is introducing some of the world's biggest and strangest looking bugs to the public.

UNL Curator of Insects Brett Ratcliffe says, "A lot of folks have never seen insects this size before because we live in Nebraska where we don't have a lot of large insects."

Tarkian adds, "I think they're cool...because there are so many different colors and they're really great."

Katherine Tarkian, of Lincoln, says, "These kids love Morrill Hall but this is kind of a special day because they can actually talk to scientists."

The museum boasts one of the largest insect collections on the continent with 2 million different bugs, including many you wouldn't normally want to touch in the wild.

Ratcliffe says, "Beetles and insects tend to have a yuck factor with most of the public so everybody is interested and they want to come and see it."

Getting up close and personal with the Eastern Hercules Beetle is only one reason kids at the museum are having a good time. And they don't seem to be having a problem with letting them crawl all over.

Amir Tarkian says, "It kind of tickled."

Whether they prefer the bugs pinned down or crawling all over, for Amir and others, this is more than just another day at the museum.


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