Cape Cod Museum of Natural History

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Address
869 Main St
Brewster, MA 02631


Founded in 1954, the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History aims to encourage and advance understanding of the natural environment through learning and discovery.  The Cape Cod Museum of Natural History resides in its 17,000 square foot building on an 80-acre site in the town of Brewster.

Cape Cod Museum of Natural History Exhibits

The museum’s two floors feature exhibits with special temporary exhibits to help enhance and flesh out the permanent collection.  A number of exhibits have interactive displays built with children in mind.

Some Cape Cod Museum of Natural History exhibits display a great deal of information on whales, flora, fauna, and indigenous birds. Other exhibits address topics such as coastal change and other environmental concerns.

Exhibits can range from the Marshview Room, which displays wildlife and scenes from nature using hands on activities for kids, to the Eldridge Arnold “Wing,” which contains many hand carved wooden birds by Mr. Arnold. Other exhibits include the honey bee observation hive, the OspreyCam, The People of the Land: The Wampanoag, and the Cape Takes Shape, which details the changes in the Cape’s landscape over thousands of years.

Programs & Events

The Cape Cod Museum of Natural History provides many programs, events, workshops and lectures that are both engaging and entertaining. These programs engage participants with their natural surroundings, scientific training is not required and programs are geared to kids, adults or both.

Mudflat Mania! is a program that teaches participants about the denizens that live in and around the Cape’s mudflats. The program encourages note taking and exploration experience, getting hands dirty with little critters in the mud.

The museum offers many other programs and events that can change on an annual basis. One can expect to find offerings like interactive shark presentations, detailed and knowledgeable descriptions of gray whales by naturalists, bird watching groups and citizen scientist programs.

Education

Education is the primary focus at the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History, which provides a number of educational opportunities for both kids and adults. The Cape Cod Museum of Natural History lists school field trips, Nature Knowledge presentations, internships, Junior Naturalist opportunities and hands on professional development as some of the offerings.

As an education center, the museum also provides STEM and STEAM educational events. STEM stands for: Science, Technology, Engineering and Math. STEAM adds art as a discipline. A monthly film series called Nature Screen covers science, technology, engineering, art and math topics.

KidSummer Summer Camp Day is an educational event with programs for kids ages 3 to 15.  These programs focus on learning and appreciation of nature through a STEAM curriculum and include outdoor and indoor activities led by experts, such as nature walks and habitat exploration.

The Cape Cod Museum of Natural History has partnered with The Raptor Lab, which provides scientific information through news and analysis and covers topics like space, wildlife and the deep sea. Seven M.I.T. alumni provide, gather and assemble the information without confusing jargon for readers of any age to enjoy.

Individuals of all ages and employment, from toddler to teacher, can discover, learn and advance their understanding of our natural environment at the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History.

Conservation Land & Nature Trails

The Cape Cod Museum of Natural History is not only a nature education center, but also a steward for over 400 acres of land right next to the museum. Museum-owned Stony Brook Valley Preserve features a salt marsh, Wing’s Island and sections of beach, all of which the museum monitors and protects. This land is utilized for educational purposes and used for outdoor classrooms.

The museum also has a couple of nature trails, the John Wing Trail and the Lee Baldwin Trail, both over a mile long. The museum features guided walks with naturalists who describe ecological details and geological changes from humans and weather.

Expect to find crabs, fish, shellfish and other creatures out in the tidal flats and creeks. Other environments through which the trails travel include a salt marsh and a beech forest.

Aquarium

The museum houses an aquarium that holds a variety of species of mollusks, crustaceans, snakes, turtles and much more.

The goal of the aquarium is to help people discover more about local wildlife that inhabit nearby ponds, creeks, streams and Cape Cod Bay all in one location.

Both saltwater and freshwater habitats can be explored and the importance of the salt marsh ecosystem, which supports a diverse group of creatures, is explained. The creatures exhibited in the aquarium change often and give visitors a glimpse of some very unique and fascinating species, like the blue lobster, oyster toadfish and spider crab.

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