Upon entering the museum, you are presented with all sorts of visual stimulus— all of the walls are brightly painted and you are immediately provided information about how to protect and contribute to your local ecosystem. Once you walk a bit further into the museum, you’ll find high-reaching walls displaying all sorts of butterflies, ranging throughout a wide range of history. Visitors are even given the opportunity to step outside into the butterfly garden and interact with living butterflies. Back in the museum, there are fresh cocoons hanging on display, all in different stages – coming closer to becoming a butterfly. You’re even taken on a walk through Florida’s history and the evolution of its ecosystem. Attending the FLMNH is an eye opening experience and enlightens visitors about the importance of conservation and appreciation.
Nature on Display
The museum itself is quite appealing due to the architecture, brightly painted walls, and high ceilings. Each exhibit is unique and informative, leaving visitors will a vast knowledge of both nature and history. One exhibit in particular that captured my attention involved nature on display—it was the walls of butterflies. I was amazed at the range of sizes, colors, and textures that butterflies could have, I was not aware of how much variety nature provided in the butterfly world. Looking at pictures in a textbook would have done less justice, going to the museum was by far the most effective medium to appreciate the diversity and variety of butterflies. The experience was enjoyable, for me personally, because I did not have much knowledge on butterflies, or any insect for that matter. I learned where certain butterflies came from, how they evolved, and how some evolved in order to avoid predators.
Nature and Ethics
Global warming and industrial development have put our land and ecosystems in severe danger. Not enough people take initiative to make an impactful difference and help to save our planet—but with museums such as the FLMNH, some people’s attention are brought to how real these issues are. Conservation efforts take a large group of people and a big backing and support in order to be successful, because change needs to happen on a global scale. One important aspect of the museum is that you can actually become immersed and experience nature, thanks to the butterfly garden. When I stepped out into the garden I felt encapsulate by the beauty of both the garden and all of the butterflies, I sensed that I was in a peaceful environment. Everyone else seemed to react in a similar way – everyone was fairly quiet and just enjoying and appreciating what the garden had to offer. All visitors were able to connect with nature by observing actual, living butterflies. Being in the garden should’ve brought awareness to the importance and human responsibility of conversing our ecosystem—and the garden, and museum as a whole, should remind everyone that we are not the only one’s living on this planet.
Nature and the Human Spirit
Most of our ordinary lives are spent inside—especially college students. Most of the time our only chance to experience nature is when we’re walking in-between classes. Going to the museum helps visitors to step out of their ordinary lives and into a special part of nature. In addition to being able to experience nature, visitors are also given a history lesson. Seeing insects and historic tribal exhibits helps us to better appreciate the mystery and majesty of the natural world because it a reminder that one thing all of us have shared in common is that we’ve lived on the same earth, and though we change and evolve, we need to ensure that the planet will be here for years to come.