Nature on Display
The Butterfly Rainforest was very appealing to me because it is a beautiful and peaceful place that is different from the environment I interact with on a daily basis. When you enter the garden you stroll along winding paths, listening to birds and flowing water. The design of the garden is artistic with elaborate benches and landscaping. The butterflies are also lovely, and they help make the overall experience enchanting. The Butterfly Rainforest grabs the attention of museum visitors through a series of signs. The large, screened-in, outdoor area is also visible from the exterior of the building. When I visited the Florida Museum of Natural History with my roommate, it was an overcast day with occasional rain or a light drizzle, because of this I learned how butterflies seek refuge in plants to protect their wings from the water. This is something I could not have learned by looking at dead butterflies pinned to frames. I enjoyed how this exhibit in the museum allowed me to experience living beauty.
Nature and Ethics
The Florida Museum of Natural History allowed me to admire numerous species of frogs and toads I will likely never see in the wild. At the same time this exhibit explained how many of these species are endangered, often because of the human destruction of their habitats. While walking around this exhibit I was excited about the living creatures they had on display, and I could sense the excitement and curiosity of the other visitors around me. This exhibit made me think about the environment and the effects my species has on so many others. I believe exhibits like this one can help increase awareness and support for conservational efforts. By showing people the living creatures their actions are impacting, it can help visitors feel more connected to nature, and therefore more responsible for it.
Nature and the Human Spirit
The Florida Museum of Natural History helps people step out of their daily lives by exposing them to both living and simulated nature that they may not encounter on a regular basis. Museums also surround people with information they may not have been exposed to otherwise. Natural history museums demonstrate how humans and other living things have changed over time with the world. They also teach how humans and other forms of life are related to each other and have interacted throughout time. Exhibits like the one above submerge visitors in realistic-looking, artificial environments to give them a sense of what it is like to actual be there in real life. This gives people an impression of the majesty of nature.