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Explore entomology with 4-H!

About Broward County 4-H

Broward County 4-H is a an organization run by the county and the University of Florida Extension Service. The mission of Extension is to provide research based information to residents of our county; in 4-H we improve the lives of families by teaching youth. Thus, the Broward County 4-H Program provides youth with practical, life skills through hands-on learning. Entomology is a strong project area for Broward County. You can explore entomology with 4-H!

Ento…what?

Entomology is the study of insects. Insects are important for many reasons. First, nearly three-fourths of all animals are insects or their relatives. Because of their sheer numbers (nearly one million species) insects impact our lives daily. Second, Pollinating insects (those who spread pollen from one plant to another) support healthy plant populations and help produce food for humans. Some insects control invasive plants. Ladybugs and praying mantis (among many others) are predatory insects. They eat garden pests such as aphids. Finally, insects are considered a source of food around the world. They are high in protein and vitamins.

Insects make our world much more interesting. One can derive a great deal of satisfaction in watching ants work, bees pollinate, or dragonflies patrol. Can you imagine how dull life would become without having butterflies or lightning beetles to add interest to a landscape?

What is Broward 4-H doing with Entomology and Youth?

In Broward 4-H, youth can become involved in entomology in a variety of ways. First, it can be a project area run by a club. Then volunteer club leaders work with 4-H staff and other Extension staff to teach it to club members entomology. Plus, 4-H staff and volunteers are able to teach entomology at partner locations; email broward4h@ifas.ufl.edu for more information.

In 2019, Bug Camp was offered by 4-H. Then, in 2020, this camp went virtual due to health concerns. Other annual events offered by 4-H and UF/IFAS Extension. For instance, Art in the Garden and the BioBlitz offer entomology education as well. Finally, Florida 4-H offers the Insectathon. 4-H youth around the state compete in insect collecting, identification and skill tests.

Youth learn valuable lessons

Through 4-H programming, youth interact with live insects and learn through art, games, and demonstrations. They improve their observation skills, respect insect life, and understand biology.

4-H caters to different learning styles. For instance, by combining science and art. Youth used water color paints to identify the different parts of the grasshoppers anatomy. Bee houses are a fun craft to encourage solitary bee conservation.

Finally, youth learn that while insects are known around the world as pests, there are many good insects out there as well. 4-H’ers explore insects that pollinate crops. Others control other insect pests or recycle organic matter. It’s our quest to share the knowledge of the diversity and importance of insects in our world.

Join us!

In conclusion, explore entomology with 4-H! Check out the 4-H Bug Club for more information on entomology, collections and neat fun facts about our world most numerous inhabitants. Contact Broward 4-H for ways you can start a club or attend an insect program! Check out the Bug Club from University of Florida!

We depend on adult volunteers to provide our programming. Contact us to help provide education to youth in our county!

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