Summer explorers can get up-close and personal with 6- and 8-legged creatures and giant animatronic insects in “Backyard Bugs: An Oklahoma Insect Adventure,” and Oklahoma Museum Network exhibit now open at Science Museum Oklahoma.
“‘Backyard Bugs’ takes Oklahoma’s insects to a larger-than-life level and gives visitors a chance to learn about their critical importance to our ecosystem,” said Eileen Castle, director of the network.
The exhibit includes an enormous animatronic praying mantis and monarch butterfly, dozens of live insects, arachnids, crustaceans, and anthropods in the “It is an Insect?” station, “Return of the Cicadas,” a documentary funded by the National Science Foundation, plus hands-on components like a build-a-bug station, DIY firefly flash patterns, a climb-in honeycomb, and more.
The 9-foot praying mantis operates using an infrared technology that enables it to detect the movement of people in the exhibit and even to distinguish between children and adults. The praying mantis not only reacts to exhibit visitors but also to the exhibit’s animatronic monarch.
“One thing I love about the exhibit is the chance to feel smaller than some of the insects we encounter day-in and day-out. Our own ‘backyard bugs’ are sometimes seen as scary or gross and they’re really taken for granted — but bugs are absolutely essential to life as we know it. They pollinate flowers and crops, help keep the environment clean, and are food for thousands of species,” Castle added.
“Backyard Bugs: An Oklahoma Insect Adventure” will be open through Thanksgiving at the museum located at 2020 Remington Place in Oklahoma City.
Museum hours are temporarily adjusted to allow for additional cleaning as the museum reopens following its temporary closure due to COVID-19. Guests should check the museum’s website for the most up-to-date hours.
All guests must reserve tickets in advance at www.sciencemuseumok.org/tickets. Daily general admission is $16.95 for adults (ages 13-64) and $13.95 for children and seniors (ages 3-12 and 65 and older). Annual memberships begin at $105.
A number of changes have been made to how guests will explore SMO in the era of COVID-19. Guests should visit www.sciencemuseumok.org/covid-19 to learn more and plan their visit.
For more information about Science Museum Oklahoma, visit www.sciencemuseumok.org.