A hairy spider makes your skin crawl, and a colourful butterfly’s beauty leaves you in awe. Insects are undeniably very cool, and they can make us feel the extremes of our emotions! In Western Newfoundland, you can find a full range of insects in one place at the Newfoundland Insectarium. Located at the start of Western Newfoundland’s Viking Trail, the Newfoundland Insectarium is one of the most interesting things to do in Deer Lake during your summer visit.

Here’s a glimpse into what you’ll find at the Newfoundland Insectarium, along with so much more.

The Newfoundland Insectarium is part of our Viking Trail road trip >

What is the Newfoundland Insectarium?

The Newfoundland Insectarium is a nature museum dedicated to insects of all kinds. It’s located in Reidville on the island of Newfoundland, just outside the town of Deer Lake. This is Newfoundland and Labrador’s only insectarium and one of only a handful across Canada, so it’s a unique place.

Check out the two-storey colony of leafcutter ants

One of the first exhibits that will catch your eye as you enter the Newfoundland Insectarium is the leafcutter ant colony. There are 47 species of leafcutter ants in the world, all of which tear apart leaves and other plant material. These cuttings are used to feed a fungus they grow within their colony, which in turn acts as food for their larvae. It’s a fascinating symbiotic relationship.

The leafcutter ant colony is connected to plant sources via transparent tubes that run throughout the facility. You can watch as tens of thousands of ants cut and gather leaves, then transport them through these tubes back to the colony. Watching these busy ants at work is incredibly interesting!

Enter a world of beauty and colour at the Newfoundland Insectarium’s butterfly house

Step inside the butterfly house to find hundreds of beautiful and delicate tropical butterflies flitting around colourful flowers and lush greenery. There are benches inside where you’re invited to have a seat, take your time, and enjoy this unusual sight.

Don’t forget to wear something colourful. You just might entice a butterfly to land on you and have a closer look.

What exhibits will you find at the Newfoundland Insectarium?

In addition to the butterfly house and leafcutter and colony, the Newfoundland Insectarium is home to a honeybee hive and many displays of live and mounted insects, arachnids, arthropods, and more. You may even have a chance to hold some of the insects on display, as we did with this walking stick bug!

Find out more by visiting the Newfoundland Insectarium website.

Looking for more to see while you’re in Newfoundland? Check this out >

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