Florida Museum of Natural History Sydney Rees

Nature On Display

Walking into my favorite exhibit.

The "Florida Fossils" exhibit was the most appealing to me as we made our walk through the museum. This exhibit included different periods and/or ages of fossils such as the Permian Period. It also includes many different animal's skeletons put together so that the viewers that come through the museum can see the closest representation of what these animals in these past periods looked like. I think that I found the design on this exhibit to be the most interesting because of the dark lights used. As seen in the picture below, the walkway into the exhibit was completely dark with little windows in the wall lit up with blue light in order to see the exhibit inside them. However, as you walked in further to the exhibit, there were spotlights focused around each environment of animals. I was also very intrigued at how the animals were in "their" environment. For example, in the second picture below, the shark and manatee are made in this oceanic environment which suits their adaptations. I think that this exhibit caused me to learn about how separate these environments are in respect to the animals themselves, in other words, these different periods of time had different versions of these later evolved animals. I think that the aspect of the museum visit that made it so enjoyable is the fact that I was taking a break from the hectic world that I live in to take some time to focus on these simple masterpieces.

Walk-way into the "Floridal Fossil" exhibit
One example of the displays of different environments throughout the exhibit

Nature and Ethics

In the Natural History Museum, there were many exhibits located around the venue: Frog Exhibit, Butterfly exhibit and many more. This museum calls on us to "love, respect and admire" as Leopold believes in ways that some wouldn't even notice. As I walked into the museum, a smile immediately went on my face as all of the different colors, exhibits and animals sank in (as seen in the picture below with the colorful dresses of these dolls). This is the "love and respect" part of Leopold's statement as the "respect" part is seen when one, as a museum goer, spends time reading the descriptions and walking through the exhibit in order to understand something more fully in order to begin to respect it. As I made my way through the museum, I would have flashbacks of my first summer living right outside DC when my family and I went to all of the Smithsonian Museums together. I remembered how my favorite one was the Museum of Natural History as I loved to see all of the different animals and how it reminded me of the movie, "Night at the Museum". As my roommate and I toured the museum, there were not that many people; however, one family stood out to me the most. After they had finished walking through the "Florida Fossils" exhibit, the child begins to scream to his parents that he didn't want to leave and he wanted to go through the exhibit again because he loved it so much. I think that this stood out to me the most because I could really understand how much the museum meant to that little boy and how much it affected him. My visit to the museum helped me to not only take a break from my hectic schedule of school but also to be able to wrap my head around the changes in cultures and environments throughout the years. Overall, I do think that this visit instilled a message of having to keep these animals safe, as Leopold imagined, as they are treasured enough to have a plethora of museums dedicated to them.

As I walked through a section where the colors especially caught my eye

Nature and the Human Spirit

As stated earlier, this Museum of Natural History helped me to step out of my hectic lifestyle by taking a break for studying for exams and taking a break from looking at my phone as I was more focused on taking in the exhibits around me. As I was in this museum I wasn't thinking about my assignments or other studying I had to do which I think represents how much the museum draws people in and piques their interests. This museum helps us understand who we are by understanding which exhibits we are drawn to and which animals or stories cause us to have the most interest. For example, I have always been intrigued in the sea life and I was the most drawn an exhibit that included sea life in the picture shown above. Lastly, appreciating the mystery of our natural world comes with the understanding of the vast amounts of different time periods and what different animals lived and thrived during these times. These animals could be huge in size and had ruled the environment and ecosystem at that time but we will never have the chance to see them. For example, any of the dinosaurs are huge in size such as the one featured in the picture below; however, we wont ever have a chance to see them interact in person and this represents the mystery around the natural world but also the majesty as these creatures were very large and embodying.

The dinosaur portion of the exhibit
Created By
Sydney Rees

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