Outreach

One of our tarantulas at IFFF 2016

The Entomology Graduate Student Association does a variety of outreach events throughout the year. From science fairs to classroom activities (all ages) to booths at fairs — we do it all! A typical event involves a brief discussion about insect biology followed by a “show and tell” display of a wide variety of insects and other arthropods (see below for a complete list of available species). We can tailor events to meet specific needs of groups; as an example, we’ve previously given insect identification lectures to Girl Scout troops to help them earn their insect badges.

We are always excited about new opportunities to talk to groups about insects! If you would like us to make an appearance at your event/classroom feel free to contact our outreach coordinators via their emails (listed below). Please ask at least 3 months in advance of the desired date (if possible) as our group receives many requests and our schedules fill up quickly, especially during the fall and spring.

If you are in the Champaign-Urbana area be sure to check out our biggest event, the Insect Fear Film Festival, held annually every February on UIUC’s campus. Also make sure to check out our events for National Pollinator Week in June.

As of January 2017, our petting zoo currently includes: Madagascar hissing cockroaches (Gromphadorhina portentosa), Chilean rose hair tarantulas (Grammostola rosea), blue death feigning beetles (Asbolus verrucosus), diabolical ironclad beetles (Phloedes diabolius), death’s head cockroaches (Blaberus craniifer), eastern lubber grasshoppers (Romalea microptera), warty glow spot cockroaches (Lucihormetica verrucosa), Arizona hairy scorpions (Hadrurus arizonensis) and many more!

We absolutely appreciate donations (suggested $1 per person) as we do this on a volunteer basis and our bugs get hungry! If money isn’t a possibility, apples, lettuce, and potatoes are always appreciated! Contact our outreach coordinators to make any donations.

Please contact the current outreach coordinators for more information or to book us for an event.

Josh Gibson: jcgibso2 (at) illinois.edu
Jacob Dixon: jidixon2 (at) illinois.edu