See Bugs, Bees and Nematodes on UC Davis Biodiversity Museum Day

It's going to be a long weekend, but it's a short one when you consider all the things you can do and see at the eighth annual UC Davis Biodiversity Museum Day on Saturday, Feb. 16.

Bring your family. Bring your friends. Bring your camera.

The science-based event, free and family friendly, begins at 9 a.m. and concludes at 4 p.m. Thirteen museums or collections will be open in a celebration of the diversity of life, and an opportunity to talk to the scientists. Hours will range from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. for some collections, and from 12 noon to 4 p.m. for others. 

The UC Davis Department of Entomology is showcasing

  • The Bohart Museum of Entomology, open from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and located in Room 1124 of the Academic Surge Building on Crocker Lane
  • The Nematode Collection, open from 12 noon to 4 p.m. and located in the Sciences Laboratory, off Kleiber Hall Drive
  • The Häagen-Dazs Honey Bee Haven, open from 12 noon to 4 p.m. and located on Bee Biology Road, west of the central campus.

The Bohart is the home of a world-class collection of nearly 8 million insect specimens. Insect scientists will meet with the public to help them explore insects and spiders (arachnids). Highlights will include the 500,000-specimen butterfly/moth collection, curated by entomologist Jeff Smith. The Bohart maintains a live “petting zoo,” comprised of Madagascar hissing cockroaches, walking sticks and tarantulas.

The nematode collection will feature both live and slide-mounted nematodes, as well as jars of larger parasites. Nematodes, also called worms, are described as “elongated cylindrical worms parasitic in animals or plants or free-living in soil or water. They exist in almost every known environment.” 

At the Honey Bee Haven, visitors can learn about bees and the plants they pollinate. Folks can engage in a catch-and-release activity, using vacuum-like devices.  An almond tasting event is also planned. The garden, installed in the fall of 2009, is located next to the Harry H. Laidlaw Jr. Honey Bee Research Facility.

These seven collections will be open from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.:

 The following will be open from noon to 4 p.m.:

All participating museums and collections have active education and outreach programs, but the collections are not always accessible to the public.   Maps, signs and guides will be available at all the collections, and also online at, and on social media, including Facebook and Twitter, @BioDivDay.