Fla. Museum completes grant-funded native wildflower, butterfly education projects

June 26th, 2007

Photos available

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — The Florida Museum of Natural History recently completed several major projects to help educate the public about the state’s native butterflies and wildflowers.

Funded with a $94,409 grant from the state of Florida, Florida Wildflower Advisory Council and the Florida Wildflower Foundation Inc., the “Educating the Public about Florida’s Wildflowers and Butterflies” project allowed the museum to create a new outdoor garden, indoor exhibit, web site and color brochure.

“The Florida Museum’s Butterfly Rainforest has generated considerable visitor interest in butterfly gardening,” said Florida Museum Center for Informal Science Education Director Betty Dunckel. “Our garden showcases Florida’s native wildflowers and their importance as host and nectar plants for our native butterflies.” (more…)

Florida Museum’s Butterfly Rainforest open until 8 p.m. April 5

March 30th, 2007

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — The Florida Museum of Natural History’s Butterfly Rainforest will be open until 8 p.m. April 5. This special “Butterfly Night” is part of Museum Nights, held most Thursday evenings while the University of Florida is in session, and sponsored by UF Student Government. The remainder of the museum will remain open until 10 p.m.

Visitors can search for night-flying moths, talk with collections staff and view an array of butterflies. Admission to the Butterfly Rainforest is free to UF students with their Gator 1 card. Last admission into the Rainforest is 7:30 p.m. (more…)

UF student wins $80,000 international conservation award for butterfly research

October 19th, 2006

Photos available

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — University of Florida entomology doctoral student Emily Saarinen has received the international Canon National Parks Science Scholars scholarship, an $80,000 three-year award for her research on endangered Miami blue butterflies. Saarinen is one of eight students from the Americas to receive the award, designed to support training for the next generation of conservation scientists. The program is sponsored by Canon U.S.A. Inc., the U.S. National Park Service and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Saarinen works in UF’s Florida Museum of Natural History McGuire Center for Lepidoptera and Biodiversity and the department of entomology and nematology in the Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences. She is co-advised by Jaret Daniels and Jacqueline Miller.

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Inaugural Florida Butterfly Festival to be held Oct. 14-15 Event headquartered at Florida Museum includes photo contest, lectures, field trips

August 4th, 2006

Photos available

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — “Do you have a thing for wings?” Join the Florida Museum of Natural History along with community partners for the inaugural Florida Butterfly Festival Oct. 14-15.

Experience butterflies like never before through expertly guided field trips to natural areas in and around Gainesville. Family activities will entice even the youngest participants to develop a lifelong appreciation and enjoyment of our natural surroundings.

Participants can experience the amazing world of butterflies and learn about the challenges faced throughout their life cycle, including insight into how other cultures perceive this magical creature through a series of lectures by world renowned naturalists.

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Fla. Museum to hold inaugural Florida Butterfly Festival Oct. 14-15

January 18th, 2006

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — The Florida Museum of Natural History is planning the inaugural Florida Butterfly Festival to be held Oct. 14-15. The event at the University of Florida Cultural Plaza will feature a live native butterfly exhibit, digital photography competition, lectures by well-known naturalists on various butterfly-related topics, nature walks to observe butterflies and moths, and many family oriented activities throughout the weekend.

The museum is planning the festival with several community partners, including the Arts Association of Alachua County, Alachua County Visitors and Convention Bureau, City of Gainesville Department of Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs, Curtis M. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts and the Samuel P. Harn Museum of Art.

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Florida Museum seeks volunteers to work with butterflies

November 22nd, 2005

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GAINESVILLE, Fla. — The Florida Museum of Natural History will offer a training session for volunteers interested in working with butterflies at the McGuire Center for Lepidoptera and Biodiversity from 8:30 a.m. – 2 p.m. Dec. 10.

Both adult and junior volunteers, ages 13-17, are needed for various volunteer opportunities. A light breakfast will be provided at the session, but participants must bring their own lunch. No prior experience or special skills are necessary to participate. For more information or to R.S.V.P., contact Tori Derr, (352) 846-2000, ext. 206. Please R.S.V.P. by Dec. 8.

Media Contact: Paul Ramey, (352) 846-2000, pramey@ufl.edu
Writer: Emily Banks

 

UF to present Florida Museum McGuire Center green building case study Friday Oct. 28

October 26th, 2005

Photos avaliable

What:
Presentation to discuss how the Florida Museum of Natural History’s McGuire Center for Lepidoptera and Biodiversity design and construction earned a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Green Building Rating from the U.S. Green Building Council.

Who:
About 20 U.S. Green Building Council members from across the state and other interested professionals are scheduled to attend the presentation by University of Florida Quality Assurance Coordinator Bahar Armaghani.

When:
1 to 5 p.m. – Friday, Oct. 28

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Florida Museum butterfly exhibits win top Southeast regional award

September 30th, 2005

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — The Florida Museum of Natural History’s McGuire Center for Lepidoptera and Biodiversity butterfly exhibits are the 2005 winner of the Southeastern Museums Conference Exhibition Award of Excellence for best exhibit with a budget of more than $1 million. Exhibitions are judged in the areas of design and fabrication, exhibit publications, educational and evaluative programs and the ability of the exhibit to support the museum’s mission or goals.

Florida Museum Assistant Director of Exhibits Darcie MacMahon, who directed the exhibition project and worked on the exhibit competition proposal with museum photographer Jeff Gage and designer Ian Breheny, will officially accept the award at the SEMC Annual Conference in October. Other museum employees who contributed to the project include Kurt Auffenberg, Pat Bennett, Stacey Breheny, Nathan Bruce, Ron Chesser, Tom Emmel, Jay Fowler, Jeff Huber, Dale Johnson, Tom Kyne, Bob Leavy, Lee Seabrook, Andrei Sourakov, Gwen Thompson and Jay Weber.

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McGuire Center presents public lecture by renowned ecologist

September 23rd, 2005

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — The Florida Museum of Natural History’s McGuire Center for Lepidoptera and Biodiversity will sponsor a free public lecture at 2 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 2 in the J. Wayne Reitz Union Auditorium by world-renowned ecologist Daniel Janzen.

Janzen, the University of Pennsylvania DiMaura professor of conservation biology, will discuss “Conservation, caterpillar inventory and DNA barcoding of a large complex tropical wildland.” The lecture is free and open to the public.

Janzen has 50 years of experience as a tropical ecologist with an emphasis on preservation and biodiversity. With more than 400 publications on the subjects, he is considered an expert in the fields of tropical science administration and conservation biology. Janzen has received many awards throughout his career, including the first Crafoord Prize in biology by the Swedish Royal Academy of Sciences (1984), the Kyoto Prize in Basic Biology (1997), and the John Scott Award of the City of Philadelphia for activities good for humankind (2003).

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Fla. Museum’s McGuire Center receives green building status

June 30th, 2005

Photos avaliable

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — The Florida Museum of Natural History’s McGuire Center for Lepidoptera and Biodiversity has been awarded the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Green Building Rating from the U.S. Green Building Council — only the second University of Florida building to receive this recognition.

The McGuire Center, designed by architects Kha Le-Huu & Partners of Orlando and built by Skanska USA Building Inc. of Tampa, was chosen for its efficient energy and water use, ongoing indoor air quality, use of environment-friendly cleaning chemicals, recycling and exterior maintenance programs and the ability to upgrade and meet future green building performance standards.

“As the newest world center for research and education on environmental issues and biodiversity, we are pleased that the state-of-the-art building housing our highly dedicated group of scientists meets the leading standards for environmentally responsible construction and energy conservation,” McGuire Center Director Thomas C. Emmel said.

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