Imagine that you’re a little bug taking a stroll through the woods. A tarantula is big when you’re human-sized, but when you’re bug-sized, that thing is ginormous!
A Mexican red-knee tarantula plus 13 more animatronic insects are on display in a special exhibit at Woodland Park Zoo. “A Bug’s Eye View” opened Monday and runs through Labor Day. You’ll get your first taste of the bug exhibit at the zoo’s west entrance. Take a selfie on the giant spicebush swallowtail caterpillar lounging near the penguins.
The heart of the bug exhibit is located in the zoo’s Discovery Loop; zoo regulars will remember that’s the same place where the dinosaur exhibit was held two years ago. At the Discovery Loop entrance, instead of a Brachiosaurus, you’re greeted by an emperor scorpion with a 15-foot-tall tail. Next up: black garden ants, a Devil’s Flower Mantis, a Madagascan Sunset moth and a stag beetle.
No scary bugs here!
The bugs are larger-than-life in this immersive exhibit. You see the world from a bug’s perspective while learning about their superpowers: They pollinate crops! They control weeds! And yes, they poop out nutrient-rich soil!
If big, hairy spiders seem like they might be too scary, don’t worry. Unlike the dinosaur exhibit, there are no growls or moans. The ladybug gently flaps its wings, the beetle clamps its mandibles. There is one insect, the bombardier beetle, that sprays water from its butt – in real life, it’s poison to ward off predators.
Cost of the experience
The exhibit costs an extra $5 on top of zoo admission, kids 2 and under are free. Zoo members pay $4, and can also get an unlimited pass for $10. The money from the exhibit goes to support animal care. For the cost of a cup of coffee, it was entirely worth wandering through the exhibit and learning about these amazing insects.
Before you go
- “A Bug’s Eye View” at Woodland Park Zoo runs through Sept. 4
- Good for all ages
- Stroller-friendly loop
- Hours: 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. daily
- Cost: $5 general public on top of zoo admission, $4 members, kids 2 and under are free. You can buy tickets online or at the entrance.