The Entomology Graduate Students Association in the Department of Entomology at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign are gearing up for the 38th annual Insect Fear Film Festival. This year’s event will be virtual, and will be focused on fleas.
“There are over 2,500 species of fleas worldwide and all are highly specialized blood-feeding parasites that live on birds and mammals. Only a small subset feed on humans, and of those some are responsible for spreading deadly diseases like typhus and the bubonic plague. Fleas lack wings, but their highly specialized hind legs allow them to jump up to 50 times their body length, which makes them one of the most impressive jumping animals relative to body size. Their agile acrobatics even inspired 19th century watchmakers to create tiny flea circuses!”
The free event begins at 5 p.m. with a variety of activities, and the films begin at 7:30 p.m. Here is what they have in store:
- Virtual insect petting zoo
- Flea Bugscope
- Flea crafts
- Virtual tour of the INHS insect collection
Virtual gallery of the annual IFFF art contest featuring insect themed artwork by
local K-12 students
- Flea circus featuring Dr. Tim Cockerill from Falmouth University in England
Top image from Facebook event page.