The UGA Entomology Insect Zoo was developed in 1985 by the H.O. Lund Entomology Club for community outreach events. In 2006 an undergraduate service-learning course was developed to address the increased demand for educational events. The UGA BugDawgs, along with the student club, annually lead hundreds of events reaching ~20,000 Georgians. The UGA Insect Zoo is a program designed to educate the young and old about insects and other arthropods. Living insects, centipedes, millipedes, scorpions, and spiders, as well as museum specimens from Georgia and other parts of the world, are brought to schools, libraries, organizations, or community centers for interactive display. The hands-on approach to learning makes this program very exciting. We hope that we can teach people how important insects are in our lives.
Yes, a very small percent of insects are harmful to humans by spreading disease, infecting our homes, and eating our crops and stored food. But most insects are harmless or beneficial. Insects are responsible for pollinating many important food crops as well as the flowers in our gardens. They decompose dead plant and animal material, which helps to recycle nutrients back into the environment. The burrowing and tunneling activity of many insects aerates and mixes the soil. Insects are very important food for wildlife and even for people in many countries outside of North America and Europe. Insect products like honey, wax, silk, shellac, and dye are commercially important in some countries. Additionally, some insects have been very important in the development of basic tools for genetic and other scientific research. Without insects, the earth as we know it would not survive!
We will attempt to fulfill all requests for demonstrations and tours within 30 miles or less of the UGA campus. Please contact us early and we will do our best to attend your event.