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Exhibits

  • Nature's Struggle:
    Survival & Extinction

    Take a guided journey through the history of biodiversity in three distinct time periods: 1820, 1905 and 2014. Experience the difference in our environment over time, the causes of those changes, and the startling consequences of our everyday actions.
  • The Dreams of Martha
    Watercolors by Kristina Knowski

    2014 marks the 100th anniversary of the death of the last known passenger pigeon, fondly known as Martha. Knowski’s work invites us to uncover the mystery and fragile beauty of these long lost and threatened animals.

  • Girl admiring butterfly in haven

    Judy Istock Butterfly Haven

    The Judy Istock Butterfly Haven is the museum's internationally renowned signature 2,700 square foot greenhouse. Home to more than 1,000 butterflies (75 species), the haven is the perfect tropical retreat.

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  • Faces from the Southern Ocean:
    Prints by J. J. L’Heureux

    An exhibition of 35 prints of animals and icebergs from Antarctica by artist and photographer J.J. L’Heureux. L’Heureux became fascinated by the wildlife and pristine environment she discovered there, including penguins, various types of seals, whales and the unique varieties of birdlife found in the Southern Ocean. Opens September 6.

  • Rare Nature: The Endangered Species Print Project

    Linking the rarity of limited-edition prints with rare plans and animals, this collaborative art project by Molly Schafer & Jenny Kendler features over fifteen artists and uses art to preserve biodiversity. To date, ESPP has raised over $12,000 for conservation teams working with more than twenty unique species.
  • Children in Beecher Lab

    Beecher Collections Laboratory

    Named after the legendary former director of the Chicago Academy of Sciences, William J. Beecher, this is a place to see scientists engaged in real taxidermy of bison, skunks, coyotes and more.

  • Extreme Green House

    See the nature inside your house and the ecology within your walls. Take a tour with the Green family and discover the way the environment connects all of us.

  • Child on slide in exhibit

    Hands-on Habitat

    Knee-high naturalists can explore the secret world of animal homes. Adventures include exploring an underground cave, a giant roped spider web and a busy beaver lodge.

  • Child learning

    Heritage of the Chicago Academy of Sciences

    Celebrate and be inspired by a snapshot of the Academy's more than 150 year legacy of scientific research of Chicago and the region. A mount of a porcupine, a blanding's turtle skeleton and mammal skins are just a few of the samples on display.

  • Kids admiring Tarantula

    Istock Family Look-in Lab

    Watch as Museum scientists and volunteers care for and study the animals that comprise the Museum's Living Collection.

  • Birdwalk in afternoon

    Micole Birdwalk

    Look through binoculars to see the variety of birds that surround North Pond. Listen to bird calls at interactive kiosks while enjoying views of Chicago's gorgeous skyline.

  • Child looking into turtle tank

    Mysteries of the Marsh

    Learn about one of the most famous former marshes in the world - Chicago! Explore seven different types of wetland you can find near your home and animals that live there. Did you know that nearly two-thirds of the endangered species in Illinois are found in wetlands?

  • Child interacting with food exhibit

    Nature's LunchBox

    At Nature's LunchBox, discover how food and nature are connected. The fascinating life cycle of food - from the farm all the way to fork - is explained with panel displays and interactive components.

  • Children exploring trails

    Nature Trails

    The fun continues outside the Museum walls at our largest permanent exhibition! Nature Trails is a nearly 1/3 mile trail where you'll be inspired by the abundance of nature that surrounds us, even in this urban environment.

  • Children playing water exhibit

    RiverWorks

    Splash your way through this exhibit as you discover that only real lazy rivers are the ones you find at water parks. Rivers are nature's own flood controls and are filled with species of fish, herons, beavers and painted turtles. Interact with River Works by reversing the flow of the river, turn the river into a lake, build your own dam and even control a water turbine.

  • Wilderness Walk

    So many different environments are found in Chicago. Walk through a recreation of a prairie, savanna and dune, complete with authentic sounds and preserved animals.

  • Bluebirds in exhibit

    Birds of Chicago

    Get up close to the birds you see in your backyard and discover how to identify them by their sounds. More than 115 specimens, including the Midwest turkey, cardinal and endangered Prairie chicken are on display from the Chicago Academy of Sciences Collections. Choose which ones you want to hear by touching the screen on the interactive kiosk.


 

©The Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum