May 24 - September 1, 2014
In keeping with its tradition of providing a BIG summer experience, the Minnesota Zoo has announced a first-of-its-kind exhibit for summer 2014–Big Bugs! Thirteen super-sized, animatronic bugs will invade the Zoo’s Northern Trail along with a live bug display and several fun, interactive elements. This FREE exhibit (with paid Zoo admission) will showcase a bug’s life and why bugs are important.
The larger-than-life bugs, a new feature of Billings Productions of Allen, Texas, move through the use of pneumatics, systems operated by compressed air. Some of the bugs are interactive, including the pincer-controlling stag beetle or the water-spraying bombardier beetle.
Big Bugs! at the Minnesota Zoo will run Memorial Weekend through Labor Day, 2014, and is made possible with support from the Clean Water, Land & Legacy Amendment.
Click on an image to enlarge.
Blue-eyed Darner Dragonfly
Giant Devils Flower Mantis
Madagascan Sunset Moth
Mexican Red Knee Tarantula
Red-tailed Bumble Bee
Seven-Spot Ladybird beetle
Bugs Fun Facts
- Ants can lift and carry more than fifty times their own weight.
- Beetles account for close to a quarter of all known species of plants and animals.
More fun facts.
- One of every three bites of food we eat is produced by pollinating insects. Bees pollinate many of our vegetables, fruits and nuts.
- The Madagascan Sunset Moth is admired for its beautiful iridescent wings. The amazing colors are not produced by pigment, but instead, light is split into different colors by thousands of scales on the moth’s wings, similar to how a rainbow is formed.
- Young dragonfly larvae are voracious predators and great swimmers, living exclusively in the water until they emerge as flying adults.
- The Mexican Red-Kneed tarantula can defend itself by flicking irritating hairs from its abdomen into the eyes of a predator.
- Dragonflies are predatory, and can easily consume 30 or more mosquitoes a day!
- The fearsome looking ‘antlers’ on a stag beetle are actually its jaws, which it uses in wrestling matches.
- To defend itself, the Bombardier Beetle sprays a combination of chemical compounds that are highly irritating when mixed. The chemical reaction boils inside the beetle’s body and explodes out of it in a controlled stream, without harming the beetle.
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