Display of butterflies in the hall

1124 Academic Surge
Monday-Thursday 8am-5pm (closed for lunch 12-1pm)
(530) 752-0493 (General information and identification)(530) 752-0493 (To schedule tours or borrow displays)
[email protected]

The Bohart Museum of Entomology houses the research insect collection for the Department of Entomology at UC Davis. The Bohart Museum is the the seventh largest insect collection in North America, and the third largest university collection in North America. The collection is housed in a giant compactor unit that is surrounded by working offices. Their primary clientèle are students, professors and scientists, but they also have public exhibits. If you are seriously interested in viewing some really cool bugs, you will find someone who will take time out of their regular work to direct you to the display wall and the live insect exhibits. They are open to walk-in visitors between 8:30—12:00 and 1:00—5:00, Monday through Thursday. Tours for large groups or school classes are by appointment only and can be make by calling Steve Heydon at 530 752-0493.

The bulk of the collections of mounted and preserved insects is however, generally unavailable for viewing by the public, and is generally reserved for use by other research institutions. However, if you really want to take a peek at the actual collections and if you are a student, you can enroll in Entomology 100, which always has a field trip to the Bohart Museum, and allows you to take a peek at the interesting collections of all sorts of insects. On another interesting note, a substantial portion of the collection is on loan at any time; the space allotted to the Bohart would not be capable of holding all the specimens owned by the museum.

In addition to the large collection, there are always a set of educational posters up front, accompanied by small boxes holding various interesting insects and lots of nice color photographs. Adjacent to the posters are several fish tanks and critter boxes filled with live specimens of various arthropods including Velvet Ants, Madagascan Hissing Cockroaches, Centipedes and Millipedes.

The staff is also quite helpful if you have any basic questions about insect collecting.

The museum was started in 1946 by Richard Bohart.

They have been selling dragonfly posters.

They are open one weekend afternoon a month for a themed exhibit. It is fun for kids of all ages.