I used to collect insect toys as a child. A lot of them are worn out, but I may still try to repaint them. But curiosity has me. I'm trying to locate them if I wanted to finish the collection. So far I can't find any info on the bugs I have.
I thought for sure they were from Safari's Hidden Kingdom, but I can't find any refrence. Anyways some clues:
- Insects were from around 1990-1999, maybe even up to 2005.
- medium size- about the size of my hands - Miniature versions also existed of the same molds.
- Series included: Praying mantis, bee (bumblebee shaped), queen ant, worker ant, ??? beetle? Others???
- Marked with T.M. and a circle. (could be Trademark, but I am hoping that might be a brand name.) May have a C.E printed on it. Year also included. Also a letter with a box, like a 'J'
- There were also life like beetles but instead of T.M, they had P.V.
- species printed on bottom
- These seemed really common around the time, at least in Wisconsin they were.
- Sets: 'Box of' Butterflies, caterpillars. The oldest ones had the colors stamped onto the wings. Later models seemed to be airbrushed with a reduction of quality. They also included stretchy versions, reptiles, snakes, animals, etc.
- sold in museum gift shops, education stores, a nature themed store in malls (can't remember the name. I think Nature's Nook?), and Accents (a craft store, not sure if they still exist. I know that one closed down years ago.)
- Had some kind of backyard theme or Hidden kingdom.
Top:[You must be registered and logged in to see this image.][You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
Backsides:[You must be registered and logged in to see this image.]
Head on:[You must be registered and logged in to see this image.]
But the mantis, bee, dragonfly and ant are part of a series and for the life of me cannot find any info on the net, ebay, or wherever to give any sort of clue. That's why I am here, hoping that someone might remember these or have come across them in collecting other stuff. Hopefully someone might have an idea.
Example of butterfly (please click to get larger pic)[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
Example of beetle:[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
There are many other insects in my collection. I can post them here or in the collections board if anyone is interested or curious.