Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Little Buddy

Animal Care Volunteer Jess recently submitted this story for our blog.

Every Thursday morning I go through the same morning tasks as an Animal Care volunteer, checking on each of our animals, noting anything that needs that attention of the staff. Lately, my favorite area has been the Insect Village. I look at each exhibit, refilling water dishes as necessary, and affectionately calling everyone “little buddy”.

This morning, though, I had a sad surprise. In the bottom of the giant praying mantis exhibit was a dead mantis. I went to the Lead Animal Caretaker, Lauren, and told her what I had found. She asked if I wanted to take it out, but I didn’t feel comfortable doing it. Despite my limited interaction with them, I always feel sad at the passing of any of our insects.

Imagine my surprise when I heard an excited Lauren calling my name. “Look!” she said. I looked more closely. What I had mistaken for a dead mantis was in fact an exoskeleton that had been molted. We had our very first adult praying mantis! He is quite beautiful. If you visit PSC, you will definitely want to come see him. I don’t think “little buddy” will work anymore so I’ll be calling him just “buddy” from now on!

Volunteers like Jess have memorable experiences every day at Pacific Science Center. If you love science and would love to share your enthusiasm with like-minded people, consider volunteering in our Science Interpretation Program. Training begins in September.

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