- Author: Kathy Keatley Garvey
The open house, held from 1 to 4 p.m., Sunday, Aug. 27, drew guests of all ages.
Tabatha Yang, the Bohart Museum's education and outreach coordinator, wore a green mantis costume to greet guests and show them the Madagascar hissing cockroaches and stick insects in the live petting zoo.
UC Davis alumnus Kevin Murakoshi of Davis arrived to gift the museum with intricate origami mantises that he crafted from "mantis-green" paper--one sheet per mantis. Murakoshi, a former UC Davis employee (computer research specialist) is the principal solutions architect at Amazon Web Services.
Photographer Ian Alexander Levin of Sacramento displayed his enlarged images of mantises, including one of a mantis eating a bee that drew "oohs" and "aahs." He owns a child day care center in Sacramento and likes to share his finds in the "Critter Corner" of the center. Levin is the administrator of the Facebook page, SacraMantis.
Skylar Primavera, who studied praying mantises while attending UC San Barbara (bachelor's degree in biology, 2020) displayed a live mantis as well as life-cycle models (ootheca to the adult), and answered questions about the predatory insect.
Melody Ruiz, a third-year entomology student, coordinated and staffed the family arts-and-crafts table, featuring "Mantis on a Stick." Using a green paper cutout of a mantis head attached to a popsicle stick, the budding artists colored the compound eyes and added pipe cleaners and other decorations as finishing touches.
Lynn Kimsey, director of the Bohart Museum, and Brennen Dyer, collections manager, welcomed the crowd and answered questions. The Lepidoptera crew of Jeff Smith (curator of the Lepidoptera collection), Greg Kareofelas and Brittany Kohler showed guests assorted butterfly specimens collected world-wide.
A computer screen showcased the work of UC Davis doctoral alumnus Alex Wild, curator of entomology at the University of Texas, Austin, and Kathy Keatley Garvey, communications specialist, UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology.
Guests viewed display drawers of both native and non-native mantises. At least 9 species of mantises in California, according to one display.
Five are native:
- The Arizona or bordered mantid (Stagmomantis limbata)
- Bistanta mexicana
- California mantid (Stagmomantis wheeleri=S. californica)
- Litaneutria ocularis=Litaneutria obscura
- Small gray mantid (Litaneutria pacfica)
Four are introduced:
- Chinese mantid (Tenodera sinensis)
- European mantid (Mantis religiosa)
- Mediterranean mantid (Iris oratoria)
- South African mantid (Miomantis caffra)
The Bohart Museum, located in Room 1124 of the Academic Surge Building, 455 Crocker Lane, UC Davis, houses a global collection of eight million insect specimens, plus a live petting zoo and an insect-themed gift shop, stocked with t-shirts, hoodies, books, posters, jewelry, collecting equipment and more.
Professor and renowned entomologist Richard Bohart (1913-2007), a member of the UC Davis Department of Entomology (now the Department of Entomology and Nematology) faculty for more than 50 years, founded the museum in 1946.