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North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences – Virtual Tour

North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences - Virtual Tour

North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences – Virtual Tour

The North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences is the oldest established museum in North Carolina and one of the state’s most famous museums. 

The Museum was created in 1879, by combining two state-owned collections of geologic and agricultural specimens.

In the 1950s and 1990s, shifts in educational policies expanded the Museum’s holdings as universities donated their collections to the state.

The collection now contains more than 1.7 million specimens of amphibians, reptiles, birds, fish, mammals, invertebrates, invertebrate and vertebrate fossils, plants, geology, and meteorites.

The Museum has four facilities on three campuses:

  • The Nature Exploration Center – downtown Raleigh
  • The Nature Research Center – downtown Raleigh
  • The Prairie Ridge Ecostation satellite facility – northwest Raleigh near William B. Umstead State Park
  • The former North Carolina Museum of Forestry – Whiteville

North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences - Virtual Tour

Samples of various types of stone from around North Carolina

The Museum hosts several special events throughout the year, including Groundhog Day, on February 2. Groundhog Day is a favorite American tradition derived from a Pennsylvania Dutch superstition.

The tradition states that if a groundhog emerging from its burrow on this day sees its shadow due to clear weather, it will retreat to its den, and winter will persist for six more weeks, but if it does not see its shadow because of cloudiness, spring will arrive early.

The Museum also hosts BugFest, which is a festival devoted to insects, held in mid-September.

Highlights of the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences

  • Natural Treasures of North Carolina  – dioramas of various wildlife and artifacts from North Carolina
  • Coastal North Carolina – exhibits of fish native to North Carolina’s coast and waterways
  • Mountains to the Sea – displays North Carolina’s natural habitats from the western mountains on to the Coastal Plain
  • Underground – features gems and minerals as well as ground, soil, and seismic displays.
  • Nature’s Explorers – an exhibit of the tools and techniques naturalists used 100 years ago to collect and preserve specimens
  • Prehistoric North Carolina  – chronicles prehistoric life in the southeastern United States
  • Terror of the South – the exhibit features fossil skeletons, including an Acrocanthosaurus
  • Tropical Connections  – highlights the climate regions of the Earth and their environmental issues
  • Arthropod Zoo –  exhibits of the insects, crustaceans, arachnids and other arthropods 
  • Living Conservatory – an exhibit with various live plants and animals, including butterflies and a two-toed sloth
  • The Nature Research Center – provides hands-on activities and scientists working in research laboratories
  • Prairie Ridge Ecostation – an outdoor facility that includes Piedmont prairie, forest, ponds, and a stream
  • Whiteville Facility – exhibits and programs on the preservation of natural and human-made materials that demonstrate the relationship of forests and people

North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences - Virtual Tour

Megalodon Jaws – North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences

North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences

  • Museum:          North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences
  • City:                  Raleigh
  • State:                North Carolina
  • Country:           United States
  • Established:     1879
  • Type:                Natural History Museum
  • Location:         11 W Jones St, Raleigh, NC 27601, United States

North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences - Virtual Tour

A collection of gems and minerals – North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences

North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences – Map

North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences – 360 Virtual Tours

North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences – 360 Virtual Tours

North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences- 360 Virtual Tours

North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences – 360 Virtual Tours

North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences

A Tour of the Top Museums in the USA

North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences

North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences

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“The saddest aspect of life right now is that we gather knowledge faster than society gathers wisdom.”
– Isaac Asimov

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Photo Credit: Qualiesin / CC BY-SA (creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0); Qualiesin / CC BY-SA (creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0); Ryan Somma / CC BY-SA (creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0); Qualiesin / CC BY-SA (creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)

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