Florida Museum of Natural History Experienced by tyLer detsouVAnh


The day I decided to visit the museum, the weather was terrible. It was cold, windy, cloudy, and raining; exactly what you would expect in the sunshine state of Florida in the city of Gainesville! This would affect the conditions of the butterfly exhibit as there was less activity than it would be otherwise in more ideal conditions. Nevertheless, every exhibit was still a noteworthy experience.

Nature On Display

I would like to say that the exhibits about marine life were the most interesting to me as I've always loved water and ocean exploration however, it was the Native American exhibits that captured my interest that day. The layout of the exhibits allowed you to truly immerse yourself within certain cultural experiences. When you enter the hut, you are acquainted by members of the tribe, darkness surrounds you with the exception of lighting flash followed by the boom of thunder and ceremonial chants. Something I felt I learned was that I realized even more how rich the native culture was. Yes, we are told about things that occurred during that era and inventions that were created but to see the artifacts in person, knowing these primitive tools were created with only the human touch. Something about that was fascinating, coming from the perspective of a student of engineering.

Nature and Ethics

I'm not sure how Leopold with agree with how the research is conducted in the museum. He might associate that more with "conquers of the land" rather than members of the "biotic community," as human kind at surface value were breeding and creating living organisms to be placed in enclosed quarters for the enjoyment of the people. Still, with such advanced communication technology always within an arms reach away, there has been fewer reasons to go out and explore; especially for those who've had no experience doing it before. The few children I saw there were thrilled when they saw every exhibit, a new world seemed to have opened up to them. For this reason, I believe the museum supports Leopold's principles as those who enter may then have a desire to explore the living nature around us (national parks, state parks, forests, springs, etc.) This connection with the world makes us make more careful decisions about how we affect our planet and the world around us.

Nature and the Human Spirit

The museum provides old and young minds experiences wouldn't normally occur in your day to day life. No where are you going to find the giant jaws of megalodon hung wide open, supersized scales of other aquatic species that allow you to see every bit of detail, miniature models of a Native American village, and fully assembled fossils of dinosaurs (although they did not have that here). It is these types of experiences that help spark the interest of the youth and makes them ask questions, questions that might impact what they end up doing with their lives and the beginnings of the quest to future discoveries. I really admired how involved some of the exhibits were, such as hearing the sounds of different animals in the plain, seeing how the butterfly operation works, microscopes, the informational videos at certain locations, and the modern house with environmental friendly technology.

Created By
Tyler Detsouvanh

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