My Experience at the Florida Museum of Natural History By: Kristin Recker

Nature on Display

One of my favorite exhibits was the butterfly exhibit. Stepping into it was like stepping into a whole new world. You’d walk through a set of doors and suddenly you were outside in a rainforest with hundreds of different butterflies and birds surrounding you. It captured my attention because of the variety of exotic colors it so beautifully displayed. I also loved how it physically put you into their habitat so you could kind of get a feel of what it is like to live in their world. This exhibit allowed me to get a glimpse of the natural world firsthand rather than through a glass window; I was able to interact rather than just observe. It was this experience in the serene rain forest that I found so enjoyable. I remember thinking to myself how I could go there and just sit there all day. It was so beautiful; the pictures do not do it justice.

Pictures from the Butterfly Garden

Nature and Ethics

The Natural Museum did provide me the opportunity to experience nature in ways that Leopold recommends in the way they had exhibits that took you to other worlds. Exhibits like the butterfly, frog, and ancient history ones were set up in a way that made you feel like you were somewhere else. In each of these places, you truly got an idea of life for other animals and their environments. As I went through the museum, I got the feeling that I was small in this world; there is so much more out there than we are all aware. At times this realization was a little overwhelming. I think other people felt the same way. Many of the older adults who went there were very intrigued with all the exhibits as they would talk about them so highly. All the children loved it as well, pointing out all the different types and colors of animals. My experience in the museum instilled within me an ethical responsibility to nature as Leopold imagines in the way it showed me that there is so much more out there and that all of these animals are just as important as us. I now feel obligated to take care of these beautiful creatures and their environments that surround us.

Nature and the Human Spirit

The Natural History museum helps us step out of our ordinary lives by showing us that there is so much more out there. There are whole other worlds that live inside our worlds that we never think to look for. It also allows us to get to know our history, our roots and where humankind evolved from. There was one section with all of the Native American tribes in Florida that I thought was really cool. It helped me realize and understand that Florida is built on the backs of Native Americans. For instance, it was cool to see how Alachua county was actually named after the Alachua tribe. There is so much out there that we just don’t know about, and the Natural History museum makes you to want to learn more.

Some cool sights and exhibits.
The frog exhibit


I took all of these photos. 

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