Living With Insect Museums

China insect museum

Huaxi insect museum
Photo: Nie Xin

The Huaxi Insect Museum bills itself as the largest in Asia.  The museum has over 400,000 specimens with 20,000 on display. As shown in the photo (left) the museum has spacious areas for display of specimens. This attracts almost a half million visitors per year. For comparison, the PERC at Purdue has over 2 million specimens densely packed into a small space with no room for display.

China is an important area for the study of biodiversity. It occupies the fourth largest geographical area of any country and is the second largest in Asia (only Russia is larger).  A wide diversity of habitats and climates are encompassed, from tropics to temperate. Of the 20,000 described species of butterflies, China is host to over half the species. Exploration of this incredible biodiversity is enhanced by modern facilities.  Building and maintaining centers for study of biodiversity can educate the public in an entertaining and compelling manner, build support for environmental preservation and create awareness of important issues such as deforestation and global climate change.

About jjneal

Jonathan Neal is an Associate Professor of Entomology at Purdue University and author of the textbook, Living With Insects (2010). This blog is a forum to communicate about the intersection of insects with people and policy. This is a personal blog. The opinions and materials posted here are those of the author and are in no way connected with those of my employer.
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