There's a place along the Jersey Shore that's dedicated itself to showcasing some of the world's ickiest bugs, while educating visitors on the importance of their existence. It's called Insectropolis

I love bugs, but I didn't always. But as I got older I came to respect bugs and their role in the environment. That meant I started trapping and saving insects like spiders, instead of unloading a can of Aqua Net on them until they dropped dead to the floor.

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That's why I'm so pumped to have learned of a museum in Toms River in Monmouth County that not only shows off bugs, but educated visitors on how vital their existence is to life on earth.

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Bugs are life, period.

And, the museum goes by the coolest name, lol: Insectropolis

Insectropolis in run by and sits behind the main office of Ozane Pest Control off Route 9 in Toms River. Pest control? Ironic, I know.

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But while owners Tim and Jeff Koerner may help NJ residents rid themselves of harmful insects, like mosquitos and termites, they're also dedicated to highlighting all the benefits bugs bring to the environment, like pollinating to keep flowers blooming and crops growing, to their beauty. Yes, beauty (i.e. butterflies, lightning bugs, etc.).

Tim Koerner tells NJ.com, "We want to educate [them] on why bugs are important, especially the pollinators."

So, what can you see if you road trip it to Insectropolis? Well, if you're brave, there are interactive and touch experiences with live bugs like a hissing cockroach, a tarantula, a scorpion, and a giant African millipede.

Costa Rican Zebra Tarantula (Aphonopelma seemanni)
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You can also get a glimpse of the world's largest beetle, called the titan beetle, indigenous to the rainforest, according to NJ.com.

Insectropolis is located at 1761 Route 9 (Lakewood Rd.), Toms River. You'll know you're in the right place when you see the giant praying mantis out front with a butterfly balancing on its head, lol.

12 Animals That Are Illegal to Own as Pets in New Jersey

While the thought of having a pet monkey or big cat sounds like you'd be living your best life, if you live in New Jersey, you might want to think again.

The 10 most searched pets in the US

The website allaboutcats.com took a look at internet search trends to see what the most in-demand pets are in the US. The results may surprise you.

LOOK: Here are the pets banned in each state

Because the regulation of exotic animals is left to states, some organizations, including The Humane Society of the United States, advocate for federal, standardized legislation that would ban owning large cats, bears, primates, and large poisonous snakes as pets.

Read on to see which pets are banned in your home state, as well as across the nation.

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