February 12, 2009

Life and Science - Not Just for Kids!

Farmyard animals, creepy crawly insects and aerospace exhibits. It sounds like a great place for kids.

Indeed, the Museum of Life and Science in Durham, North Carolina is a fantastic place to take the kids for a day of amusement and education.

There's much more to the museum that makes it an attractive outing for everyone!

The museum has over 65,000 square feet of indoor exhibits along with 13 acres of outside exhibits, making this a destination for indoor and outdoor fun throughout the year.

The conservation-minded museum also houses rescued Carolina Wildlife that cannot be rehabilitated to return to the wild. There is a two-acre wetland habitat that is home to waterfowl and turtles. A rain garden is in use as well as a cistern to capture rain water for the tropical plants inside the butterfly house.

Within the butterfly house, there is a tropical conservatory that is over thirty feet high. Hundreds of butterflies and three species of birds are easily viewed. The vibrant, Oriental White-eye birds appear to pose for photos as they feed from nectar feeders!

Sit on a bench, or stroll around this beautiful environment to absorb the colors of the wildlife and the 250 species of plants.

A chrysalis house is viewable so that everyone can see the butterflies emerge! With the exhibit safely behind glass, you can get get a close-up view of the miraculous metamorphosis.

An insect exhibit with praying mantis, beetles and spiders is adjacent to the butterfly conservatory. Colorful poison dart frogs, in vibrant blue, green and black, are also in the large exhibit.

Outside, there is an "Explore the Wild" exhibit where the black bears, red wolves and lemurs have large, natural areas to explore.

Lemurs are just adorable! There are two species in the exhibit: ring-tailed and red ruffed. During cold weather, they are housed indoors, but on a sunny day - the lemurs play! Lemurs are primitive primates from Madagascar and the Comoros Islands. Lemurs are on the endangered species list due to loss of natural habitat.

With all the exhibits, plus an onsite cafe, spending a day at the Museum of Life and Science is a delightful experience!

Story and photos by Freda Cameron. Photos taken at the Museum of Life and Science, February 2009.
Freelance travel writer. My current fiction writing projects include a completed manuscript and several works in progress.

By the way, my name is pronounced fred-ah, not freed-ah. Thank you.

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