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GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Celebrate Earth Day this year by being a scientist during the Florida Museum of Natural History’s first bioblitz from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. April 21 or purchase wildlife-friendly plants for your garden from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. April 20 to 22.

Bioblitz participants may explore the outdoor University of Florida Natural Area Teaching Lab behind the museum and learn about collection and field research techniques for plants and different types of animals including amphibians, birds, insects and mammals.

Participants will learn about the importance of collections from Florida Museum and other UF researchers and students as well as see some of the equipment scientists use in the field.

“This Earth Day event celebrates Florida wildlife and offers visitors a first-hand opportunity to see how field research and museum collections are intimately connected,” said Jaret Daniels, museum assistant director of exhibits and public programs.

The free event also features displays from the UF entomology department and various museum collections including mammals, birds, butterflies and moths.

The large museum plant sale features more than 120 species of difficult-to-find and wildlife-friendly plants, including Florida natives.

Experienced museum employees and volunteers will be available to assist with plant selection and garden planning.

“It (the Earth Day sale) is unique because of its volume and magnitude,” said Jeffrey Hansen, Florida Museum Butterfly Rainforest operations manager. “During the big plant sale we offer the weird and unusual stuff.”

Proceeds from the plant sale benefit the museum’s Butterfly Rainforest exhibit and events like the Earth Day celebration and ButterflyFest. For more information, visit or call 352-846-2000.

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Source: Jaret Daniels, 352-273-2022,
Jeffrey Hansen, 352-273-1898,
Writer: Kate Schofield
Media contact: Paul Ramey, 352-273-2054,