Adventures at the Florida Museum of Natural History By: Cali holber

Nature and Ethics

The Florida Natural History Museum did provide me with the opportunity to experience nature as in ways that Leopold recommends. While I was in the butterfly exhibit, I witnessed dozens of butterflies flying, eating, resting, and playing with their surroundings. I also witnessed some other animals, such as turtles, which were also coexisting peacefully in the butterfly exhibit. From prior knowledge, I was saddened knowing that the amount of butterflies, turtles, trees, and other aspects of nature are decreasing rapidly everyday, all over the world. I think that the green earth is decreasing at such a fast pace because most people appreciate buildings and human growth more than they appreciate the peaceful outdoors. I agree with Leopold's beliefs in that the efforts put in to save the environment will be lost without at least a little support and appreciation from practically everyone. While at the museum, I recognized the value of nature even more than I previously had. Growing up, I lived in a house surrounded by woods and parks; therefore, I already had a pretty strong appreciation for an environment without disruptive, man-made buildings. However, I realized that not everyone shared my experience and love for the outdoors. This museum allowed all students to attend and (hopefully) experience a growing love for nature, so maybe the people of the world will be able to conserve and protect the world.

Nature and the Human Spirit

I sat down on one of the artistic benches and felt a sense of calm wash over me as I watched the butterflies flutter gracefully around, the turtles swim in the pond below, and the warm, welcoming environment set around me. I realized the individuality and the beauty of every single thing in that room: from each wing on a butterfly to the sound of the rushing water and the smell of the outdoors despite having a roof over my head. I found this experience purely peaceful. I walked around the little room multiple times, making sure to stop and smell the flowers (not any that a butterfly was currently on). While on my adventure, I wasn't concerned with any projects or homework that I knew that I had to do later that day or any of the people that I may have had issues with recently. I was solely focused on the elegance and delicacy of everything around me. On one of my walk through's, an elegant butterfly landed right in front of my foot nearly seconds before my foot was going to land. Luckily, I had realized where the butterfly landed and stopped in my tracks. This one moment made me realize how big of an impact I could have. On one hand, I could have ended the butterflies life without even meaning to. I could not even think about what else I could wreck without even realizing it. On the other hand I could consciously choose to help the people and environment around me. Going to the butterfly museum made me want to be a better person.

Nature on Display

I found the butterflies particularly enjoyable because of how different they all are. While they are all butterflies, they have many aspects that differentiate them. One of these aspects is size. I saw butterflies that were longer than my hand from the tip of my middle finger to the edge of my palm and butterflies that were smaller than my thumb. Another aspect is color. Some butterflies were purely white like a blanket of snow; whereas, others were colorful like tie die. I was mesmerized by all the differences of the butterflies. One of my favorite parts of the exhibit was a plate of fruit. Although all of these butterflies have so many differences, they all still wanted and needed the same things to survive; one of those necessities being fruit. When passing this plate of fruit, I saw several different kinds of butterflies doing the exact same thing: getting the nutrients needed from those pieces of fruit. I related this to the people around me: everyone is going to have their different but in the end, we are all people and we just want to be happy.

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