Are you ready to bug out?
In honor of the recent return of the American Museum of Natural History's popular "Spiders Alive!" exhibition, here's a look at where you can learn about -- and see up close -- our six- and eight-legged friends.
American Museum of Natural History
After an "overwhelming" response to its 2012 live arachnid show "Spiders Alive!," the American Museum of Natural History decided to bring it back for a second run. Explore arachnids' evolutionary history, anatomy and unique traits like venom and silk-making, as well as get face-to-face with 16 different species of spiders (out of the more than 44,500 known species), including the western black widow, golden orb-web spider and goliath bird eater -- one of the largest spiders in the world.
There will also be other arachnid orders, including the desert hairy scorpion and the giant vinegaroon, on view. Through Nov. 2, suggested admission $22 adults, $17 students and seniors, $12.50 children; Central Park W. and 79th Street, 212-769-5100, amnh.org
Explore the majestic butterfly at the Bronx Zoo's Butterfly Garden. The conservatory features monarchs, julias, swallowtails and more among native New York shrubs and wildflowers. Visitors can see how zookeepers care for the butterflies at the nursery, learn how to plant a nectar bar in your own backyard to attract the winged insect and discover the vital role they play in our ecosystem. Open April-October, general admission $16.95 adults, $14.95 seniors, $12.95 children, plus $5 for the Butterfly Garden; 2300 Southern Blvd., Bronx, 718-367-1010, bronxzoo.com
Staten Island Children's Museum
Butterflies are just some of the insects children can investigate at the museum's Bugs & Other Insects permanent exhibition. They can watch butterflies being born, and, once a new healthy hive arrives soon, bees at work. They can also get hands-on and crawl through a human-sized ant hill, try on an exoskeleton and learn about pollination and camouflage. Other arthropods of interest include those not native to the city, such as Madagascar hissing cockroaches, scorpions, tarantulas and death feigning beetles. Admission $6; 1000 Richmond Terrace, Snug Harbor, 718-273-2060, sichildrensmuseum.org