How to Mount Bugs for Display

By eHow Hobbies, Games & Toys Editor

Taking the time to mount bugs properly makes for a more attractively displayed bug collection. Careful mounting also helps with preserving the bugs and can even make identifying them easier. You don't need a lot of fancy equipment to mount bugs for display. Many of the things you'll need can be found around the house or in your local hardware store.

Gather Supplies for Mounting Bugs

Obtain relaxing jars for your insects. These jars are airtight containers that are used to restore the moisture of your bug specimens.

Secure a wooden box for your insect collection. Alternatively, you may use a large shoebox.

Purchase styrofoam sheets to line your insect collection box.

Gather entomology or sewing pins.

Buy or make insect specimen labels. You can learn how to make your own by reading 'Insects on Display: A Guide to Mounting and Displaying Insects,' available at Amazon.com (see Resources Below).

Relax Your Bugs

Place your bugs in relaxing jars along with sponges that have been wet with a solution of water and phenol.

Seal your relaxing jars and make sure they are airtight.

Leave your bug specimens in the relaxing jars overnight.

Proceed, using a pair of forceps, to straighten and spread your bugs' body parts.

Pin Your Bugs for Display

Place a bug on a styrofoam sheet by sticking a pin through its mid-section and anchoring the pin in the styrofoam. Be gentle yet firm.

Arrange your bugs so they are pinned at a uniform height.

Make sure that one third of each pin is left exposed above its bug.

Identify and label your bugs with your insect specimen labels. Print neatly to add to the beauty of your display.