Insects & Arthropods

Photo: Burke Museum
Photo: Burke Museum

Bug out over the most abundant group of animals in the world! 

This collection offers a fascinating look at the wide world of insects. This exciting collection of specimens is designed to help students think about the roles of insects in the world around us. Included are multiple reference materials, multiple insect specimens, and a 5x loupe microscope.

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1 week rental: $50
2 week rental: $60
Each additional week: $20

Cost Assistance Application

What’s Inside?

Burke Boxes include museum-quality objects and artifacts, as well as activities that can be tailored to many different ages and interests.


  • Familiar bluet
  • Various dragonfly specimens
  • Various damselfly specimens
  • Various moth specimens
  • Various butterfly specimens
  • Cabbage white butterfly
  • Anise swallowtail butterfly
  • Monarch butterfly
  • Orange tip butterfly
  • Grasshopper
  • Various grasshopper specimens
  • Praying mantis
  • Honey bee
  • Honeycomb
  • Bumblebee
  • Blue orchard mason bee
  • Various bee specimens
  • Wasp
  • Yellow jacket and nest
  • Termite
  • Earwig
  • Hissing cockroach
  • Green leaf insect
  • Arizona rhinoceros beetle
  • Bird-eating tarantula
  • Monster centipede
  • Red clear cicada
  • Fancy green cicada
  • Various ant specimens
  • Various fly specimens
  • Cricket
  • Darkling beetle
  • Ladybug
  • Various beetle specimens
  • Bees: A Honeyed History by Piotr Socha
  • Hey, Little Ant by Phillip M. Hoose
  • Microsculpture: Portraits of Insects by Levon Biss
  • On Beyond Bugs: All About Insects by Tish Rabe
  • Insects: Spiders and Other Terrestrial Arthropods by George C. McGavin

Questions & Answers

We've compiled answers to some of the most common questions we receive. Have another question that you need help with? Contact us. Please also refer to the Burke Box Terms & Conditions (PDF) for more information.

Yes. Handling a Burke Box is a safe experience for clients and staff. We encourage clients to follow local COVID guidelines and general health practices while using a Burke Box.

Our rental schedule assures all boxes and their contents are thoroughly quarantined before being handled by staff and clients. It also allows us to accommodate adjusted staffing patterns at the Burke as we navigate our COVID response. If it is impossible to manage a Burke Box pick up or drop off on the days available, please contact Burke Education at

Learning doesn’t always happen in a brick and mortar building. Luckily, Burke Boxes are very adaptable resources that can be used easily in distance learning situations.

Check out our tips for teaching remotely with Burke Boxes.

Absolutely! In addition to classrooms around the state, Burke Boxes have been used by homeschooling parents, after school groups, community groups, early learning facilities, and libraries! Each Burke Box includes lesson plans and resources to give you guidelines and ideas for how to use your box. 

Burke Boxes can be picked up on the start date of your rental from the Burke Museum Business Entrance at the northeast corner of the building during business hours (8 AM – 4 PM). 

When you arrive at the Burke Museum, use the call button to tell staff you are picking up or returning a Burke Box. A Burke staff member will bring your box out if you are picking up and will retrieve the box from outside if you are dropping off. To minimize the spread of illness and germs, clients will no longer enter the Burke Business Entrance and must wear a mask during drop off and pick up.

The Burke Museum address is 4300 15th Ave NE, Seattle (get directions to the Burke). If driving, you may pull into the N1 parking lot off of Memorial Way NE (the main entrance to UW campus off of NE 45th St). Please use the loading and unloading zone when picking up your Burke Box and not the adjacent parking lot or the main visitor entrance. The N1 parking lot is a paid lot managed by the University of Washington Transportation Services.

If you have questions or concerns about your ability to retrieve or drop off your Burke Box, please email Burke Education at

Your Burke Boxes should be returned to the Burke Museum Business Entrance by 4 PM on the last day of your rental period. For shipped boxes, your Burke Box should be mailed with a carrier of your choice no later than the last day of your rental period

Email as soon as possible if you are unable to return your Box on time for any reason. Please note that we have a late fee of $10 per day per Burke Box.

A Burke Box rental costs*:

$50 for 1 week 
$60 for 2 weeks
$20 for each additional week

Please note: Pricing for Backyard Scientist Backpacks is structured differently from other Burke Boxes. Please see the Backpacks page for pricing.

Payment can be made online through our webform or in person via credit card, check, or purchase order no later than the last date of the rental period.

*Does not include shipping costs.

Yes! Our generous donors make it possible for us to offer cost assistance to schools, families, and programs across the state. To apply, please fill out our Burke Box Cost Assistance Request form.

Yes, Burke Boxes can be mailed to Washington state recipients outside of King County* for an additional $30 per box (Please note: Cost assistance and scholarships cannot be applied to shipping costs.). This fee does not include return shipping; mailing all Boxes back to the Burke Museum is the responsibility of the renter. Burke Boxes should be mailed through the carrier of your choice no later than the last day of the rental period. All return Burke Boxes should be shipped to: 

The Burke Museum
4300 15th Ave NE
Box 353010
Seattle, WA 98195

*Due to proximity to the museum and an increasing number of rentals, we aren't able to offer shipping within King County or outside the state of Washington.

** Jarred wet specimens cannot be shipped at this time. Boxes with few jarred wet specimens will be shipped without them. Boxes with many jarred wet specimens cannot currently be shipped.

If you are unable to pick-up or return a Burke Box on the scheduled date, or need to change or cancel a reservation, please call email Burke Education at

Cancellations must be made a minimum of two weeks before the scheduled ship or pick-up date for a refund. Cancellations made with less than two weeks’ notice will be charged the full rental fee.


More Burke Boxes

With 18 Burke Box titles ranging from culture to earth and life sciences, there's something for everyone!

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