My Experience at the Florida Natural History Museum By: Lauren Karnolt

Nature on Display: This exhibit, pictured below, that illustrates the wetland environments of Florida is particularly appealing to me. The life-like plants and animals that adorn the space of the exhibit make the whole experience of learning about the wetlands more realistic. From the herons that were catching fish to the sand that sparkled under the studio lights, It was great admiring the work that was done to bring the exhibit to life. What I learned from the exhibit that I previously did not know was that there is a delicate balance between predator and prey in this environment that I thought didn't exist. Walking freely from exhibit to exhibit without constraint gave me ample time to really appreciate and explore the wonders that the Florida Natural History Museum had to offer.

Nature and Ethics: Walking through the natural history museum, I did feel like I needed to become one with nature instead of being separated and against it. Once you come to respect the natural world, you begin to feel interconnected and a part of it. Encountering butterflies in the butterfly enclosure was a really eye-opening experience that made me realize how easy it was for people to ignore the awesome power of the natural world. All of my senses were used during this experience in the butterfly garden. From the sights of colorful butterflies to the sounds of birds chirping, there was never a moment that my senses were dull. Even other people around me were just as entranced and present with their surroundings. By providing life-like ecosystems, the museum made it possible for visitors to be up-close and personal with the history and science behind the natural world. Walking out of the museum, I did feel like I owed nature an ethical responsibility since I came to realize how precious and awe-inspiring the forces of nature can be.

Nature and the Human Spirit: The Natural history museum helps us escape our ordinary lives by providing a multitude array of exotic and prehistoric animal skeletons that show how much evolution has progressed the size and complexity of organisms. When you stop and really explore some of the displays that are presented to you in the museum, you realize how little human existence is in the grand scheme of things. Once you come to that conclusion, you have then stepped out of your ordinary life. Seeing the giant sloth-like animal that towered over fifteen feet tall really made me appreciate the power nature has over everything that lives and exists. By taking time out of my busy schedule to go and experience what the Natural History Museum had to offer, I walked out knowing that I have gained more appreciation for the connection between nature and its effects on individuals.

Credits:

Created with images by ROverhate - "butterfly insect macro"

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