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Meet the scorplings! They’re the modern sting age family

16 January 2014 by Dickie

A large black scorpion with 21 tiny bright white baby scorpions attached

Our Emperor Scorpion with her babies. Photo National Museums Liverpool.

Our Emperor Scorpion has given birth to a litter of 21 tiny scorplings at World Museum. This is the very first photo of mum with her new arrivals. And don’t they look cute?  Laura Carter from World Museum’s Bug House tells us a ‘bite’ more…  Read more…

Entering this year’s Bug House photography competition? Don’t miss these top tips…

11 November 2013 by Felicity

close-up

Ready for a close-up!

Wondering how to capture that perfect shot for the Bug House photography competition? Bug House demonstrator Laura Carter shares her top tips here…

“Our Bug House photography competition is all about discovering the amazing six, eight and many legged creatures all around you and having a little fun along the way. You don’t need to go to the ends of the earth or have an expensive camera to take amazing photos. Read more…

Calling all budding bug photographers!

1 November 2013 by Felicity

A Vapourer Moth, captured on camera by Laura

A Vapourer Moth, captured on camera by Laura

The World Museum Bug Photography Competition is back! Here’s Laura Carter, our Bug House keeper, with the details…

“We’re excited to announce that our bug photography competition is relaunching! You might already have a favourite shot you’ve taken over the summer, but it’s not too late in the year to still get some nice shots of our six, eight and many-legged friends. Read more…

Deadly? Only if you’re an insect!

25 October 2013 by Lisa

False widow spider

False widow spider

Our Bug House Keeper, Laura Carter, is a fan of eight-legged beasties and she wants to set the record straight about a particularly misunderstood spider…

“The False Widow spider (Steatoda nobilis) has been getting lots of bad press lately. Touted as a “deadly, flesh eating spider attacking the nation by the thousands”, this spider is actually not a danger.  Read more…

Deaths-head moths!

27 February 2013 by Angela

a yellow caterpillar eating some leaves

Would you like a nice Chianti with that Mr Caterpillar…?

Paul Finnegan, a member of our Bug House team, has been lucky enough to receive some Death’s-head Hawkmoth caterpillars for World Museum.

The Death’s-head is the largest moth in the UK with a wingspan of up to six inches and played a starring role in the famous Silence of the Lamb’s movie poster. These fascinating little creatures migrate from North Africa and parts of Europe to the UK each summer. Adult moths make a loud squeaking sound which, prior to the creation of modern bee hives, the moths used to calm angry bees when raiding hives to steal honey! Read more…

The wonders of World Museum

5 July 2012 by Lucy Johnson

A photograph of a large spider model at World Museum

Jacob Cook, as part of his work experience at NML, visits World Museum and reports on what he saw:


Today I revisited the World Museum in Liverpool for the first time in a while. I got there just after opening time expecting an empty museum, however that was not the case, the place was filled with junior school classes who must have been on their end of year trip.

These pupils seemed to enjoy every minute of the experience. They were excited, very curious about the exhibits and left no stone unturned (there are actual prehistoric stones that are available to handle) whilst dragging their teachers from one floor to the other. I thought it was great that their age group (8-11) are still as into the museum as me and my class were at that age. Read more…

Meerkat heaven…simples!

12 March 2010 by Lucy

The job of a National Museums Liverpool press officer is a varied one. With such a diverse family of museums and galleries, there are many opportunities to highlight our exhibitions and events within the press, but not all as exciting as yesterday…well, for me anyway!

A Pigmy Hedgehog

Here I am with my one of my favourite little characters from the sessions, a gorgeous Pigmy Hedgehog

As a life long lover of Meerkats (yes, I even liked them before those well-known price comparison adverts hit our screens) I was chuffed to bits to be invited along to a press opportunity ahead of some fantastic Meerkat-tastic events that are taking place at World Museum over the next couple of weekends as part of National Science Week. Read more…

Happy Anniversary to the World Museum!

31 December 2009 by Lisa

Black and white photo of old museum interior.

The museum before it was bombed in the Second World War.

I know I’m a day early, but 2010 will mean a pretty important anniversary for us here at National Museums Liverpool. It will be the 150th Anniversary of William Brown handing over the keys for what was then the Liverpool museum, which we now all know and love as the World Museum.

To mark this anniversary we’re going to be featuring a year-long series of World Museum-related stories on this blog. There’ll be a story a week, with a mix of historical and contemporary pieces. We want to let you know all about the museum’s history but also give you a few behind the scenes peeks at the people, stories and events that make (and have made) this such a special museum. Read more…

Hermit crabs get a new home!

20 August 2009 by Lisa

Bug House Demonstrator, Rebekah Beresford, is back again to tell us about her latest project in the Bug House at World Museum Liverpool. This time she has been giving the Hermit Crabs’ vivarium a make-over! You can see the photos from each stage of the project on our Bug House Flickr set.


A glass tank with sand and plants inside

The Hermit Crab vivarium

After the success of the Indian Ground Beetles display earlier this year it was decided that some of our other vivariums could also do with a revamp! The Bug House hasn’t kept any mantids for over a year now and they’re incredibly popular with the visitors - so the next vivarium on the list was their display.

The new vivarium arrived from Exo Terra and was made by leading experts in the world of exotics. We got to work on siliconing in a glass partition, a third of the way along the tank to create a fresh water pool. Hermit crabs require fresh water so that they can mix it with salt water. The crabs then pull up into their shells their own preferred salinity reservoir from which they can breathe through. The fresh water pool in this vivarium will house a variety of aquatic invertebrates such as apple snails and gammarus (shrimp-like amphipods). The pool will also be useful for maintaining the humidity in the tank. Read more…

Bughouse welcomes bizarre newcomer!

20 July 2009 by Lisa

Bug House Demonstrator, Rebekah Beresford, tells us about the latest addition to the Bug House…


Well, this is my first post to the blog and through my future blog posts I hope to highlight some of the exciting things we do in the Bug House. My name is Rebekah, although I seem to have adopted the title ‘Beckie Bughouse’ somehow, and I’m the Bug House Demonstrator. I’ve been working for National Museums Liverpool for almost a year now and basically I love and wholly respect invertebrates of every kind.
Wandering Violin Mantis

The weird and wonderful Wandering Violin Mantis

So, may I present to you the Wandering Violin Mantis or Gongylus gonglodes. This awesome looking insect is our newest addition to the Bug House. We have eight of these funky little creatures and they’re one of the most bizarre looking out of all the mantids.

These insects are part of the order Mantodea and are characterized by their slender limbs and stocky upper body. As suggested by the name, this mantis looks somewhat like a violin with leaf like appendages protruding from the legs to aid camouflage and a leaf like head. They’re from Southern India and Sri Lanka and come in a variety of different shades of brown.

The wandering violin mantis is more of a ‘sit and wait’ species rather than a hunter but that’s not to say that they’re picky. These mantids are confident, ravenous feeders and will snatch a variety of flies and moths from the air, if the dare to fly close enough. Most mantids are solitary and have to be kept individually but these are unusually social. Given plenty of space they can be housed together in small groups of 8-10 and pose no threat to each other.  Read more…

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Welcome to the National Museums Liverpool blog! Written by our staff and volunteers, we’ll give you a peek behind the scenes of our museums and galleries.

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We try to ensure that the information provided on our blog is accurate and that appropriate permissions to use images have been sought. The opinions in each blog are very much those of the individuals writing.