Florida Museum of Natural History By Cassi Lee

Nature on Display: The exhibit that appealed to me the most was the Butterfly Exhibit. The outdoor scenery and greenery along the wooden pathways piqued my interest. As soon as I entered the room, the butterflies were flying around my head, and it immediately captured my attention. It was fun to be so deeply immersed in the natural outdoor habitat of the butterflies, and to interact with them. I was able to see them not only fly, but also feed on bananas and oranges. The exhibit also displayed facts about the butterflies, which made it an even better experience. I was able to learn more about them by reading interesting facts. I learned about the temperature of butterflies, and their coloration. I never would have known that their optimal temperature is 100 degrees Fahrenheit, or that their scales keep them warm, or that their colors have a purpose for survival. These facts, the natural environment, and the butterflies surrounding me made my involvement in this process so much more enjoyable and memorable.
Nature and Ethics: Leopold states that we must appreciate and love the land. Upon visiting the Natural History Museum, I definitely felt more appreciation for our land and for our world. I began to agree with Leopold, as I was surrounded by such valuable and irreplaceable facts and artifacts. I felt grateful for the natural art on Earth and our ability to preserve it. However, I also sensed that our wildlife would no longer be able to be preserved if humans continue to destroy natural habitats. I read a fact which stated that fish populations cannot survive if we keep destroying mangroves, sea grasses, and other plants. As I read these facts and walked through the museum, I thought about how our generation could be able to save animal populations by cleaning up after ourselves and protesting against practices such as fishing and hunting. Other people in the museum also looked sorrowful as they read the unfortunate facts. Visitors of the museum could connect with nature through the facts, realistic artifacts, and the outdoor butterfly exhibit. My experience here gave me a better understanding and respect for Leopold's view, and I now agree with him.
Nature and the Human Spirit: The Natural History Museum takes us to a world unimaginable so we can recognize the mystery and majesty of the Universe. I was amazed to see how large sharks are. I never knew how big they could be, and seeing this exhibit allowed me to view sharks differently. Being this shocked showed me that there are far greater things out there, greater than we could ever imagine. No matter how much we think we know, we can constantly be surprised. This realization proved to me that I am just one single person in a Universe comprised of things so immense and pure. I was humbled at that moment, and able to appreciate and enjoy the mystery of the natural world. I now have more respect for the world we live in, and the continuous surprises and priceless wonders.

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