The Meaning of Nature The Florida Museum of Natural History

Nature on Display: In the Natural History Museum, one of the exhibits that caught my interest particularly was the model of an estuary. This model is not one that is given much attention, but I found it appealing because it was extremely detailed and it really provided a realistic view of a real estuary. One aspect I found very interesting is the fact that there were even fake bugs moving around. It really allowed me to get a good understanding of how estuaries are in the real world. By using this medium, it was much easier to convey how estuaries function. This model was very memorable because it was so natural and it really did a good job representing the dynamics of an estuary. Being able to observe every detail and see the interactions of animals and the environment really was one of the most enjoyable aspects of this model.

Model of an Estuary

Nature and Ethics: Also in the Natural History Museum, there were many instances in which nature was described as a beauty of life rather than an object that should be utilized for economic gain. In particular, the exhibit about the Everglades was very informative and provided a lot of details concerning the wildlife and landscapes which allowed visitors to really get a grasp of just how important its preservation should be. The museum also provided plaques that explained the threats that Florida faces in concern of water resources. These plaques do an excellent job of detailing the issues and really outline how they affect the ecosystems of wildlife and even us humans. There is also information provided that give the visitors suggestions about how they can impact the environment by conserving. By being more informed, I was really able to comprehend the seriousness of these threats and it did, in a sense, instill an ethical responsibility in myself as I came to realize that nature is truly beautiful and its capabilities are essential to life as we know it. As Leopold says, we should strive to view ourselves as inhabitants of the environment rather than solely utilizing to our own benefit.

Water Threats in the Everglades

Nature and the Human Spirit: In the Natural History Museum there was a display of Midden, or the remains of what people left behind. This midden was able to allow archaeologists to understand and draw conclusions about ancient times and how people interacted with their environment. Even the simplest of things such as bottle glass, or olive jars are able to give us insight into how civilizations functioned. This made me realize that even the things we do today are later going to be looked back on and be considered less advanced. The museum really gave me a new perspective of life and made me contemplate about how nature is truly mysterious and it functions in ways that, sometimes, even scientist cannot describe. Learning about the midden and how humanity has evolved in relation to the environment has granted me a new appreciation of nature and all that it has to offer.

Hidden Story of Midden

Credits: Introduction page photo obtained from:

All other photos obtained from Florida Museum of Natural History

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