This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of The Orkin Ecologist for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.
If you have a science fan in your house, then this post is for you! Orkin, yes, the pest control company, created The Orkin Ecologist, a site that celebrate science and uniqueness of bugs. My 12 year old and 6 year old and I sat down to check out the site and the first thing that popped up was the Goliath Bird-Eating Spider. Talk about gnarly! This is one HUGE spider that is 11 inches long and has 1″ fangs. My kids were enthralled. My son kept asking question after question as we read through the information on this spider. Luckily every question he asked (does it really eat birds, can it hurt humans, etc) was answered. From there we just kept going page to page learning new things about insects.
The site inspired us to do a little bug hunting on our next camping trip, but first we needed a bug investigation kit. I picked up some plastic spiders from the Dollar Store, some green spray paint and E-6000 glue. I also grabbed a recycled peanut butter jar and we put together this fun bug catcher. You’ll also want to pick up a magnify glass and some sort of notebook to record your findings so that you can look them up later on The Orkin Ecologist.
Your first step is to spray both the spider and the lid of the peanut butter jar with the spray paint. Set it aside to dry.
While that is drying, clean out any peanut butter left in the jar. Why use a peanut butter jar? Once clean it is clear and since it is plastic there is no worries of breaking glass when the kids are running around.
Once the paint is dry, glue the spider to the top of the lid and set aside to dry.
If you plan to keep your bugs in your container for any length of time, you’ll also want to poke some holes along the top of the jar to allow for air flow.
Now that you have your cool bug jar, hunt around your backyard for insects to observe. We found a Daddy Long Legs in addition to a bunch of other spiders, flies, a mosquito and some ants.
My son would draw a picture of the insect and I would write my children’s observations about the bug.  And if we didn’t know the name of a bug was that we found (like the black and white caterpillars that we know cause rashes by leaving their hairs embedded in your skin) we were able to later look it up on the computer based on our observations! The magnify glass helped get really up close and personal with the creepy little buggers!
The Orkin Ecologist site is a fantastic educational resource for both novice and experienced science lovers! I definitely recommend you checking it out with your kids. If you do visit, don’t forget to come back here and tell me what you thought! I would love to hear if your kids loved it as much as mine.
Add this Bug Jar to a DIY Bug Hunting Kit for a fun gift idea:
DIY Bug Hunting Kit