Florida Museum of Natural History By: mark rivera

I found the design of this exhibit appealing for a few reasons. The first reason this exhibit caught my eye was because of the sheer size of the Megaladon fossil that was on display. The giant shark mouth was almost incomprehensible in size, and to think that animals like this were once swimming in our waters is bizarre. Beyond this, the exhibit juxtaposed this large fossil with ones of smaller sharks, creating a stark contrast between the sizes of all of them and making the Megaladon fossil all the more mesmerizing.

While I don’t personally believe that the museum allowed me to embrace Leopold’s idea, I do believe that there were some exhibits that perfectly represent his idea of “loving, respecting and admiring” the land. This is shown in the picture above that showcases an exhibit of a Native American tribe. These villages exemplify Leopold’s idea as they treat the environment as another person in a sense; they always only take what is necessary and give back to nature whenever and wherever they can. As I walked through the museum I was kind of in awe at the amount of exhibits they had as well as the variety of them. Other people seemed very content and pleased with the museum as a whole and looked very happy to explore all of its exhibits. Overall, while I didn’t walk out with a new ethical outlook on nature, I was awestruck by the museums exhibits and learned that I should take more time to connect with nature.

The natural history museum allows us to peek into the history and past of our environment. It provides insight into what animals lived before us, what people inhabited the land before us and it assists us in learning about our history. This helps us step out of our ordinary lives by teaching us that there was a planet and a population before we were here and that we were not the first to inhabit this Earth. Understanding how our ancestors took care of this planet, and understanding how to coexist with the other organisms on this planet can help us save our environment and keep us from destroying the one home we humans have. To understand the history of our environment is to appreciate and nurture the majesty of nature itself and keep it healthy for future generations to come.

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