Bug Fest Is Back at the Academy of Natural Sciences Aug. 13–15
Plus virtual and in-the-field experiences through August
July 14, 2021
Celebrate all the many-legged movers and shakers of the world as the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University presents Bug Fest, Friday through Sunday, Aug. 13-15.
Discover live bug displays, cicada specimens from the Academy’s Entomology Collection, live shows featuring Academy scientists, the Roach Race 500, Bugs on the Big Screen and more fun and engagement for adults and kids alike. All in-person activities are free with regular museum admission; some will also be live streamed on Facebook Live and Zoom.
After skipping in-museum programming last year because of COVID 19, Bug Fest is back for the 14th year with a mix of scaled-back in-museum displays and activities, but ramped-up virtual and in-the-field opportunities. During August insect enthusiasts can learn how to sketch bugs, join Academy entomologists searching for critters at night, and (for adults) enjoy Academy Nightcap: Bugs in Bondage.
“We are thrilled to be infesting the museum again with Bug Fest! Though it may look a little different, visitors will encounter our engaging entomologists, live bugs and our unique, fun Bug Fest programming that has made this one of our most popular events throughout the years,” said Academy Animal Programs Developer Karen Verderame, lead organizer of the annual festival.
To celebrate Bug Fest, the Academy is hosting the Academy Bug Fest Bioblitz on iNaturalist. Throughout August, the public is invited to make any observation of an insect and add it to the iNaturalist app or website, and it will be included in the nationwide Bug Fest bug survey. Join the Academy Bug Fest Bioblitz project page to stay up to date with notifications and explore what other crawly critters iNaturalist users are finding. For more information, visit the Academy’s Bug Fest webpage at https://bit.ly/36CxPji
Here’s what to look for on the museum first floor and auditorium, Friday through Sunday, Aug. 13–15:
Live Bug Displays
Friday, Saturday and Sunday
Take a closer look at some amazing live arthropods in our live bug displays.
Cicada Display from the Entomology Collection
In celebration of the emergence this spring and summer of Brood X cicadas, take a close look at the difference between periodical and annual cicadas as well as other cicada species from around the world, all from the Academy’s collection.
Science Live! Infestations
Friday, Saturday and Sunday
Watch out for one of the pop up “infestations.” Stop by for an encounter with one of our scientists or animal keepers and catch a glimpse of our unique collections, live bugs and more!
Ask the Scientists
Friday, Saturday and Sunday, 10:30 a.m.
Sun, fun and ... bugs? Insects in summer do more than give itchy bites and invade picnics. They fill a myriad of roles for the benefit of ecosystems in Philadelphia and around the globe. In Ask the Scientists, visitors can ask Academy entomologists about beneficial insects and any other insect questions bugging them.
Bugs on the Big Screen
Friday, Saturday and Sunday, 12:30 pm.
Friday and Sunday, 3:30 p.m.
This unique live animal show will take a high-definition look at what makes bugs beautiful, amazing and important.
Roach Race 500
Friday, Saturday and Sunday, 1:30 p.m.
Cheer your favorite roach as it tests its speed on different tracks and races over obstacles. The best competitors will go on to race in the finals, and you won’t want to miss it!
Academy Conversations: The Decline of Insects
Saturday, 3:30–4:30 p.m.
Also viewable on Zoom
Insects rule the world, and we are just along for the ride. We rely on them for everything from our morning coffee (pollinators) to red dye in fabric and food (scale insects) to recycling (decomposers). Join the Academy for a live in-person conversation in the museum or catch the free live stream on Zoom as Academy entomologists discuss the connection between increased global temperatures and decreased insect populations. What do these trends mean for us, and what can we do to improve the situation? Panelists include Jon Gelhaus, PhD, Academy curator of entomology and Drexel professor, moderated by Karen Verderame, Academy animal programs developer.
Here’s what to look for on Zoom, Facebook Live and in the field in August:
Academy Nightcap: Bugs in Bondage
Thursday, Aug. 5, 8:30-9:30 p.m.
From spiders that survive mating through silk bondage to copulations that last for days, the world of bug sex has way more kink than you ever imagined. Join Academy insect experts on Zoom for this journey into the bizarre and fascinating world of insect and spider mating rituals. You’ll never look at a bug the same way again. $10. To register, visit https://bit.ly/3kiYRUU
Science in the Wild: Bug Night Crawl
Saturday, Aug. 7, 7:30–9:30pm
When the sun goes down, the bugs come out! Join Academy scientists as the night comes alive at Rushton Conservation Center in Newtown Square, Pa., for an exclusive outdoor opportunity to do some community science. Take a guided flashlight tour of the preserve and discover the invertebrate species that live there. Try your hand at light-trapping and learn how this awesome entomology technique helps track invertebrates of all stripes. You’ll meet real scientists and find out how research at the Academy is making the world a better place, one many-legged specimen at a time. In partnership with Willistown Conservation Trust. $10. For details and to register, visit https://bit.ly/3elhfbY
Bug Fest, Live! Creature Feature
Monday, Aug. 9-15, 11 a.m.
Tune in to the Academy’s Facebook Live every day at 11 a.m. to meet the Academy’s arthropod ambassador animals. Explore the many roles insects and their relatives have around the globe and find out how climate change has impacted insect populations, invasive species and biodiversity.
Monday, Aug. 9, 3 p.m.
Grab your sketchbook and get creative with nature artist Stephenie Koniers on Zoom as she gets inspired by another special guest: live bugs, painting right before your (compound) eyes! Learn to bring your invertebrate drawings to life and explore the finer details of insects and arachnids. Get some helpful tips for drawing or painting your favorite species, and then show off your art. Share if on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter and tag @acadnatsci. $5. To register, visit https://bit.ly/3kj7bEs
Academy Conversations: Decline of Insects
Saturday, Aug. 14, 3:30–4:30 p.m.
This event is also offered live in the museum at the same time (noted above)
Insects rule the world, and we are just along for the ride. We rely on them for everything from our morning coffee (pollinators) to red dye in fabric and food (scale insects) to recycling (decomposers). Join the Academy for a live in-person conversation in the museum or catch the free live stream on Zoom as Academy entomologists discuss the connection between increased global temperatures and decreased insect populations. What do these trends mean for us, and what can we do to improve the situation? Panelists include Jon Gelhaus, PhD, Academy curator of entomology and Drexel professor, moderated by Karen Verderame, Academy animal programs developer. To register, visit https://bit.ly/36yzyX5
Shaker of Science: Adventures in Entomology
Thursday, Aug. 19, 5:30–6:30pm
Did you know the Academy of Natural Sciences has two insect collections? Over 3.5 million specimens are housed and studied in the Entomology Collection, but there are also hundreds of LIVE insects cared for and presented by the Live Animal Programs staff. Learn everything you can about both during this virtual happy hour on Zoom. Meet the experts and hear their stories of collecting, caring for and identifying insects all over the world and right at home at the Academy. Participates are Academy entomologists Jon Gelhaus, PhD, Jason Weintraub, Isa Betancourt, Greg Cowper and Animal Programs Developer Karen Verderame. Pay-what-you-wish. To register, visit https://bit.ly/3khBQBT
For images, visit the Press Room.
News media contact:
Carolyn Belardo, Director of Public Relations, The Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University
215-299-1043, firstname.lastname@example.org, | Twitter @AcadNatSciPR | Press Room: www.ansp.org/press