BUGS! Our Backyard Heroes

A mantis and a monarch butterfly frame a pink splash with BUGS! in white cartoon letters
Bugs are amazing!

You might think of them as small, hairy and a bit scary, but they can do things that can’t be done by anyone or anything else. They’re a vital part of our ecosystems; they help our country maintain biosecurity; and they keep your own backyard in good environmental health. They have some pretty special talents, and BUGS! will introduce you to them all.

Meet bugs up close and personal

There’s a huge range of creatures to discover on your journey through this exhibition, you’ll meet some living creepy crawlies – cockroaches, locusts, even the famous Avondale spider! Learn the science of bugs as you discover local insect species, and find out about all kinds of bugs from around the world, each with incredible powers.

An adult and a child draw bugs on a backlit table
Make your mark on the insect kingdom

BUGS! is filled with insect-related activities. Step inside a big “tree” to learn what it’s like to be a tree wētā, switch on a microscope to see bugs up super close, camouflage yourself like an insect and see what you can hide from, and assemble your own “super bug” from all the best bits of bugs of all kinds! There are hours of fun and learning to be had.

A family watches a video of a snail
A new world to discover

See these tiny creatures as you’ve never seen them before. Bugs are our backyard heroes – come in and get to know them.

Exhibition developed by Puke Ariki