Bloodsucking parasites the focus of new Oshkosh museum exhibit

CREATED Jun 9, 2014

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OSHKOSH - You can get up close and personal with the creepy crawly creatures that eat you this summer in Oshkosh. 

Mosquitoes, leeches, and ticks are the focus of the Attack of the Bloodsuckers at the Oshkosh Public Museum. 

"We have live mosquitoes and live leeches, both fully contained in tanks," said Karla Szekeres, Marketing and Membership Coordinator for the museum.

There aren't any live ticks on display, but there is an inflatable tick chair visitors can sit in.

"The tick kind of grows around you, so it kind of gives you that feeling of how it feeds off your body and continues to grow."

The exhibit is full of everything you ever wanted to know about blood feeding parasites. 

"Mosquitoes can track you from up to a half a mile away and find you based on your breathing," said Szekeres.

They also like the smell of your feet.

"We have a fun little display that helps you determine your foot odor and how that relates to how a mosquito finds you more attractive."

There are also tips on how to keep mosquitoes away.  

And despite their choice of food, blood feeding parasites are needed.

"Even though they're gross and kind of yucky to look at, the exhibit does tell you why they're important to the ecosystem.  Mosquitoes serve as food for other things," explained Szekeres. 

The exhibit runs through September 7.