MANHATTAN (PIX11) — The American Museum of Natural history is on a mission to raise awareness about the important role insects play in preserving our planet.
Recently, the Monarch butterfly was added to the list of endangered insects. The museum has a new exhibition aimed at shedding light on the issue, and what we can do to help.
It’s called “Extinct and Endangered: Insects in Peril.” The images span two hallways at the American Museum of Natural history, capturing the beauty of insects.
But, each larger-than-life photograph places a spotlight on a big problem. These insects also serve a purpose. They play an important role in the food chain, and the exhibition serves as a reminder that we need to protect them in order to protect us.
Beetles are among the many that make the list consisting of 300,000 species; some are at risk, like The ladybird Beetle. Commonly known as ladybugs, they make excellent predators in our ecosystem. But it turns out they too face a decline.
From pollination and decomposition to fresh water filtration — we depend on these bugs for survival, yet experts say we are the source of the problem. Without insects, the human population wouldn’t last more than a couple of months.
“Any small things we can do, from turning out the lights in our backyard, to allow night space for moths or lightning bugs, to not spraying as many insecticides on our lawns,” associate curator and entomologist Jessica Ware said.
If you’re interested in learning more about insects and what you can do to help save them, you have plenty of time to check out this exhibition. Museum officials say there’s no end date in sight. Also, come early 2023, the American Museum of Natural History will open a building featuring even more insects. The insectarium will be a one-stop shop of live insects, interactive games, photos and more.