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Day Tripper - Insectropolis
02/27/2011 - By Christine Burke Eskwitt
The Bug Museum of New Jersey
1761 Route 9
Toms River, NJ 08755
Phone (732) 349-7090
Insectropolis on Route 9 in Toms River is home to more than just the proverbial Jersey mosquito. It features thousands of beautiful and bizarre insects from all over the world! Visitors of all ages will be fascinated as they discover the little known lives of insects and gain a greater appreciation for bugs and their place in the world. Insectropolis’ enthusiastic staff educate and entertain visitors as they wind their way through Insectropolis’ bug-themed city.
Start your tour at Bug University to learn some bug basics. Spin the wheels of Metamorphosis and lift the flaps of Phylum Arthropoda. Visit the class pets and discover all the characteristics that bugs share before you graduate.
Insects have been around longer than almost anything on earth. What’s the secret to their survival? Discover the six keys that have allowed insects to be so successful throughout history.
Learn how insects are an integral part of the worldwide food web. Whether you inspect their mouthparts or their senses, you’ll discover that insects use a variety of ways to find a satisfying meal. Test your knowledge on touch-screen computers. Peer inside the aquatic insect tank. You just might see the diving beetle devour a tiny fish!
How do insects tell each other vital information? In ways you can’t even imagine: sound, smell, light, even dancing! Tune in to WBUG Radio to discover all of the ingenious things insects do in order to communicate.
Rock State Prison
Here, the bad bugs are behind bars. Slide open the cells of the six-armed bandits to see the mug shots of thieving agricultural pests. Check out the bugs in solitary confinement for spreading disease. Study the outlaws still at large. And salute Insectropolis’ Finest: the insects busy policing our world and keeping the villains in check.
There’s a war going on. Whether predator or prey, insects employ brilliant strategies to increase their chances of survival. It’s eat or be eaten, but through use of weapons, armor, scare tactics, and camouflage, insects fight valiantly for their lives.
Rubber Tree Plant
Just what makes that little old ant think he can move that rubber tree plant? Teamwork! The anthill flow chart shows how efficiently the work is divided. Spy on live carpenter ants as they go about their business.
Subterranean termites live in our area and eat wood in our soil. They build elaborate subway systems to travel from place to place. Will their appetite for destruction lead them right into your home? Check out a termite’s view of your crawlspace or crawl through the MudTube to catch a glimpse of what’s happening underground.
Sometimes, if you make a wrong turn, you may wind up in a scary neighborhood. Take a detour to see some of the more frightening arthropods, the tarantulas. Notice a crumpled up tarantula? It’s just an outgrown, hollow exoskeleton tossed aside by its owner. Molting, the process of how all arthropods grow, is just one of the new things you will discover.
Honeybees have been helping pollinate crops and providing us with honey for ages. Learn the specialized tasks that enable a colony to produce that sweet treat and all the work that goes into it. Find out the unique way that bees communicate. After observing Insectropolis’ live hive, you’ll definitely understand the phrase “busy as a bee”!
Throughout history, insects have played an important role in many cultures. Ancient Egyptians revered the scarab beetle, the Chinese enjoy cricket fights, and Native Americans tell folklore tales of butterflies. Insects and humans co-exist planetwide. Admire the multitudes of specimens from around the world and get bitten by some awe-inspiring bug history.
See Insectropolis’ featured arthropods each season. Here’s where you’ll find the most venomous creatures in Insectropolis. You may be just in time to watch the bugkeeper feed our friends and discover how insects are kept alive in captivity.
Touch A Bug & Bug Shop
Of course, your visit won’t be complete unless you touch a bug! Touch a live tarantula, scorpion, millipede, or a hissing cockroach before you leave. Be sure to stop by the One Stop Bug Shop. You’ll find every bug item imaginable, from fake bug tattoos and silly bug toys to framed specimens and collectable beetles. There’s something to suit everyone’s interest (and wallet)!
Calendar of Insect Events
March is Youth Art Month: Insectropolis loves bugs and loves art, so they combined both and sponsored an art contest for children ages 5 to 12 to create original artwork inspired by bugs. Last year, over 600 entries in the Bugging Artist Contest were received from over 20 area schools. It’s a sure bet that every one of them was BUGTASTIC! During the month of March, 2011 winning masterpieces (along with many honorable mentions) will be displayed in celebration of Youth Art Month.
March 19 – Night Crawl Sleepover for Scouts: 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 a.m.
This fun-filled event is recommended for scouts ages 7-12. Night Crawls have a maximum of 85 guests. Please email email@example.com for a registration form and to check availability. Cost is $35 per person. Insectropolis can also plan a special evening event for your scout group September through March.
The Bug Museumnof New Jersey
1761 Route 9
Toms River, NJ 08755
Phone (732) 349-7090
Open Year Round!
Adults (3 years and older): $7
Groups of 15+ $5 per visitor
Tuesday – Saturday 10 am - 3 pm
(Closed on major holidays.)
11 am - 2 pm
Summer Hours (July and August) - Monday to Saturday 10 am - 3 pm
From the North — Take Parkway South to Exit 88. Take Route 70 West to Route 9 South. Insectropolis is approximately 2 miles on the left hand side behind Ozane Pest Control. Both facilities are located across the street from Carlton Pools and Hertz Car Rental. Click the map below to get directions from your location.
From the South — Take Parkway North to Exit 83 (Pleasant Plains – Route 9). Take Route 9 North. Insectropolis is approximately 2 miles on the right, behind Ozane Pest Control. Both facilities are located across the street from Carlton Pools and Hertz Car Rental. Click the map below to get directions from your location.
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