Showcasing and Celebrating a Day of Science: UC Davis Biodiversity Museum Day

The "best-kept secret" is no more.

Well, it's not so much as a "best-kept secret" but a "UC Davis treasure."

Thousands attended the seventh annual UC Davis Biodiversity Museum Day, which showcased 13 museums or collections.  Billed as "a celebration of the vast diversity of life on Earth, both present and past," it's also "a celebration of science."

It took place Feb. 17. Here's the update: you can now see it on YouTube at The newly posted video is the work of talented UC Davis undergraduate student Alexander Fisher-Wagner, who filmed, edited and posted the piece. 

You can get a bird's eye view and a bug's eye view of all the activities, which ranged from ancient dinosaur bones to live praying mantises, from hawks to honey bees, and from California condor specimens to carnivorous plants. Participating were:                     

The annual Biodiversity Museum Day, free and family friendly, is indeed a special occasion. All participating museums and collections have active education and outreach programs,  but the collections are not always accessible to the public, said Biodiversity Museum Day committee chair Tabatha Yang, education and outreach coordinator for the Bohart Museum of Entomology.

The UC Davis Biodiversity Museum Committee is already gearing up for the eighth annual, set Feb. 16, 2019. Mark your calendars!

Meanwhile, Moth Night at the Bohart on July 21!

Meanwhile, the Bohart Museum, directed by Lynn Kimsey, professor of entomology at UC Davis, is hosting a Moth Night this Saturday, July 21 from 8 to 11 p.m. Free and open to the public (and it's family friendly), the event features both indoor and outdoor displays as scientists share their love and knowledge of moths, butterflies and other insects. 

A blacklighting display (moth trap) will get underway around 9:30-10 p.m.

The Bohart Museum Moth Night is being held in conjunction with National Moth Week, July 21-29, which celebrates the beauty, life cycles and habitats of moths.

Bohart scientists will be on hand to discuss moths and answer questions. They include Bohart senior museum scientist Steve Heydon;  entomologist Jeff Smith, curator of the the moth and butterfly specimens; "Moth Man" John DeBenedictis; naturalist and photographer Greg Kareofelas; and UC Davis undergraduate entomology student Wade Spencer, who staffs the live "petting zoo," featuring Madagascar hissing cockroaches, walking sticks and tarantulas.

The family craft activity is "shaping up to be colored beeswax moths on a candle," Yang said.  Free refreshments--cookies and hot chocolate--will be served.