Good Life Tour of the FLMNH Shivam Patel

Introduction: The Florida Museum of Natural History included many different exhibits that showed the wonders of the animal and natural world. It peaked my curiosity of the natural world and of Earth's history. Most of the displays were skeletal or fake, but these showed me what these animals and times were like compared to those of today.

Nature on Display: In the Florida Museum of Natural History, there was an exhibit that depicted a skeleton of a mammoth. I found this appealing because it showed how massive these creatures were, and that they lived a long time ago and through these fossils, we have been able to learn so much about them. It captured my attention through the sheer size of the skeleton. It was huge! I learned that the natural world is truly mysterious and that it is always evolving to better accommodate for the circumstances the Earth throws our way. Walking through the museum and seeing actual skeletons of these animals and for some exhibits, actually being within arm's reach of the butterflies made me enjoy the museum very much.

Nature and Ethics: One exhibit that displays a perfect connection of humans and the environment was the butterfly exhibit. It consisted of hundreds (it seemed) of live butterflies enclosed in a gigantic glass cage. I absolutely loved it, as I have never been able to be this close in proximity to these insects. Other people seemed to be in just as much wonderment as I was, fascinated by the many different butterflies, all of differing size and color. They flew so close to you, and just as you would reach out to see if it would land on your finger, it would fly away out of arm's reach. This made me feel like I had a responsibility to better the environment, or at least do my part in preserving it as much as I can. This world is not only ours to live in, it houses many other species, and it made me feel that we should take some initiative to preserve it.

Nature and the Human Spirit: The way the museum better helped us understand who we are as the human race was to compare that to many other species. As we know, many species have gone extinct over the ages. By putting them on display, we get to see firsthand at what used to be. This shows us what has gone, and what may come one day. It also shows that we, as a species, have not been kind to the Earth. But it also shows us the mysteries of the world. It shows us many things that were previously unimaginable, shows us how much we relate to nature, and how we truly are not alone.

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Shivam Patel
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All photos taken by Shivam Patel

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