Very big bugs.

That’s what you’ll find at a new exhibit at the Canadian Museum of Nature called Bugs: Outside the Box.

“This exhibition offers a multisensory experience,” says Meg Beckel, the museum’s President and CEO.

If, by “multisensory experience,” you means coming face to face with giant bugs then, well, yes that’s exactly what it offers.

The exhibit includes live specimens of some of the largest beetles on the planet, boasting names like the elephant beetle or the Hercules beetle.

If that’s not big enough, the centrepiece of the exhibit is a travelling collection of sixteen incredibly-detailed, much-larger-than-life models of exotic insects. They were hand-crafted by Italian sculptor Lorenzo Possenti.

But wait, the bugs get even bigger!

There’s a hands-on display of a beetle image taken with an electron microscope. You can zoom in to every follicle on its hairy little legs. There are also several detailed images projected onto giant wall screens.

There’s even an oversized model that comes apart to show you the inner workings of the stag beetle and how it digests the rotting wood if feeds on.

Icky? Perhaps, but also very educational. “I’m 66 years old and I finally learned how bugs work,” says Pearce Daley, visiting from Tampa, Florida.

It’s a great way to get up-close-and-personal with a class of animals many people would rather run away from. “I think people do have an unnatural fear of insects. They always see them as something nasty to be stomped on,” says Bob Anderson, a research scientist at the Canadian Museum of Nature.

He points out that many insects are actually quite beneficial. Most are harmless. And, let’s face it, they are everywhere. Not only do they vastly outnumber humans, they even outweigh us. “If you were to take all the ants in the world and put them on one side of a scale and take all the people in the world and put them on the other side of the scale, the ants would weigh more than all the people,” explains Anderson. “And that's just ants!”

Bugs: Outside the Box opens Friday, October 23rd and runs to March 27th, 2016.