Florida Museum of Natural History By Kayla Camp

Nature on Display

The exhibit I enjoyed the most at the Museum of Natural History was the Florida Fossil exhibit. The moment I stepped foot in the exhibit, I felt as if I was transported through time. The atmosphere was calming yet I was surrounded by fossils of species that roamed the Earth millions of years ago. All of the fossils were displayed so that you could compare the size of the animals compared to each other. One animal that I was particularly interested in was the giant ground sloth. Through this exhibit, I was able to understand better the size and strength of the sloth and how it evolved over time. I found the exhibit to be particularly enjoyable not only in how it was set up, but also that some parts of it were interactive. As the years progressed and I went further into the exhibit, there were globes that showed the shifting continents that visitors could interact with. This paired with the towering fossils created an altogether interesting yet fun exhibit.

Nature and Ethics

The museum as a whole presented nature in a way that coincides with what Leopold believed. As I ventured into each exhibit, I felt engulfed in nature yet in a manner that was respectful and protective of nature. One example of this is the butterfly exhibit. Before entering, we had to have rules explained to us that were in place to protect the butterflies. The amazing part of the butterfly exhibit is how beautiful it is. I felt as if I was transported to an incredibly rainforest. I felt at peace and like I could not be more connected to nature. A butterfly even landed on my hand! My friend reacted the same way and loved it just as much as I did. I believe the experience of feeling as if I was in a beautiful rainforest reminded me that we are caregivers of the Earth and need to protect and preserve it for future generations.

Nature and the Human Spirit

The Museum of Natural History reminded me personally of how much bigger the world is than myself. Going to the museum made me step out of my usual routine and remember there is so much more than what I experience in my day to day life. It is amazing how vast and different the exhibits were yet all represented some aspect of the natural world we live in. To me, it's astounding to think about the creatures that used to roam the Earth and how people lived years ago. This reminds me how the Earth may be still growing and changing along with the creatures that inhabit it. All of the exhibits combined create an image of the world that may not even be complete. This reminds us that nature is a mystery and that we are here to preserve it.

Credits:

Created with images by jared422_80 - "Gainesville - Florida Museum of Natural History - Butterfly Rainforest - Blue Morpho"

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