Office bugged

March 8, 1996

One office at the University of British Columbia may be a trifle overcrowded - for some tastes at least.

Entomology lecturer Karen Needham, who is also curator of the university's Spencer Entomological Museum, enjoys the daily company of a pink-toed tarantula whimsically named Miss Muffet, a black widow spider called Elvira III, and a couple of African praying mantises known enigmatically as Bonnie and Clyde.

Her personal favourites are six-inch Australian leaf insects who find the environment so acceptable they have produced 15 pin-head-sized offspring who live in a plastic box for fear they would scurry off.

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