The Bug Witch

Tracy Hoida, Writer

Sloan Grant(s) Received: 2021, Screenwriting Award, Carnegie Mellon University 

Project Type: TV Pilot 

Genre: Drama, Biopic 

Length: 60 minutes 

Field of Science: Entomology, Scientific Illustration 

Stage: Development 


In 17th century Amsterdam, naturalist and biological illustrator Maria Sibylla Merian grows tired of her dismissive male peers and dares to risk an expedition to South America to study and document the insect and plant life of the new world. With only a few decades past when women with an interest in insects were burned as witches in Europe, what new dangers will Merian and her daughter encounter during their three-year expedition far down the winding Lawa River and deep into the inhospitable tropical forests of Surinam? And is the danger truly in nature or is it in her fellow countryman who dare to try to tame and enslave this new world?