Earth Day celebration includes bioblitz, three-day plant sale April 19-21

April 4th, 2013

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — The Florida Museum of Natural History will celebrate Earth Day with its annual bioblitz from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. April 20 and butterfly-friendly plant sale from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. April 19-21.

The plant sale is one of the museum’s largest of the year, featuring more than 125 species including wildlife-friendly and Florida native plants. The bioblitz aims to teach visitors about how items go from being collected in the field to becoming part of the Museum collection. Participants will have the opportunity to explore the outdoor University of Florida Natural Area Teaching Laboratory and learn survey techniques for different animal and plant populations. Museum collections from Dickinson Hall also will be displayed during this free event.

“A unique aspect of the Earth Day event is to share the story of how the museum works to conserve and preserve our Earth’s diversity,” said Catherine Carey, Florida Museum public programs coordinator.

In addition to the plant sale and bioblitz, the museum will host a panel discussion at 11 a.m. with John Moran, Rick Kilby and Leslie Gamble about the artists’ exhibit “Springs Eternal: Florida’s Fragile Fountains of Youth and Finding the Fountain of Youth: Discovering Florida’s Magical Waters.” The museum is displaying the exhibit from March 23 through Dec. 15. Journalist and author Cynthia Barnett moderate the discussion.

Proceeds from the plant sale benefit the museum’s Butterfly Rainforest exhibit and events like the Earth Day celebration and ButterflyFest.

“Our great interest is to educate the public and offer the information they need to be successful in creating butterfly-friendly gardens,” said Jeffrey Hansen, Florida Museum Butterfly Rainforest operations manager.

For more information, visit www.flmnh.ufl.edu/butterflies/plant_sales.htm or call 352-846-2000.

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Source: Catherine Carey, ccarey@flmnh.ufl.edu, 352-273-2064
Writer: Laura Caicedo, lcaicedo@flmnh.ufl.edu
Media contact: Paul Ramey, 352-273-2054, pramey@flmnh.ufl.edu