Nature on Display
I found the butterfly rain forest to be the most enjoyable part of the museum and the most beautiful. I enjoyed stepping outside of "The Swamp" for a moment and into a peaceful rain forest that was surrounded by butterflies, birds, fish, and colorful plants. The educational plaques especially captured my attention and I enjoyed reading them to learn more about butterflies' dietary habits among other facts. The way this exhibit is designed allows visitors to learn about and observe butterflies in an immersive environment which has more educational benefits than simply viewing the butterflies through a glass box. It is because of the immersive design of this exhibit that I learned that butterflies eat through their proboscis and was able to watch a butterfly eat a banana.
Nature and Ethics
In the Florida Fossils room, there is an exhibit that focuses on the extinction of the Pleistocene. 14,900 years ago, the Pleistocene were hunted to extinction for their meat and tusks. This exhibit gave me the opportunity to view nature the way that Leopold recommends- with love, respect, and admiration. As I looked at this exhibit, I felt a sense of loss for never getting the chance to see one of these creatures. Other people who viewed this exhibit seemed to have the same solemn facial expressions. The Museum of Natural History allows visitors to connect with nature in an unusual way in this exhibit. It gives visitors an opportunity to see what it's like without certain parts of nature and to educate people on why it is so important to prevent extinction of animals to the best of our abilities. After my visit at the Museum, I have a greater appreciation for nature and will try to remember that nature is a beautiful thing that I should appreciate; not destroy.
Nature and the Human Spirit
The Museum of Natural History allows visitors to step out of their ordinary lives by showing them how small they are compared to the Universe. One way that the Museum does this is through their mammoth and shark fossil exhibits. While I was standing by both of these exhibits, I realized how truly small I am compared to these amazing creatures. It helped my better understand the majesty of the natural world.