Now open | Free admission

This gallery exhibition offers a glimpse into the artwork of bark beetles, 5-millimeter creatures that have the ability to colonize and kill an entire tree within a year. These elusive creatures inscribe their entire life within a tree’s bark— leaving behind a beautiful, intricate, and at times, murderous signature. Come interpret the uncovered patterns left behind by these conquering artists from exotic forests around the world.

3-D Habitats

  • View wood samples showing 3-D bark beetle habitats from trees around the world, and try to interpret the invasive designs they leave behind.

Photographs

  • High resolution photographs feature different bark beetles.

  • In the early 20th century, bark beetles were responsible for killing millions of American elms — one of the largest epidemics of tree deaths ever recorded.
  • With an estimated 400,000 known species, beetles comprise the largest animal group on earth.
  • Some bark beetles form a symbiotic relationship with fungus, cultivating it in their habitat as a food source.
  • The front wings in beetles are modified into hardened wing-cases called elytra.

Acknowledgements

Bark Beetle Calligraphy was created by Jiri Hulcr, an assistant professor at the University of Florida School of Forest Resources & Conservation. Photographs were taken by Hulcr, Craig Bateman, K.V. Makarov and U. Schmidt, and installation and assembly was done my Matthew Pollard.