Thursday, January 27, 2011

Dinosaurs and More!

So sweet! MT petting one of the non-animatronic dinosaurs.
These were just part of the normal walking path 'decorations'.
Photo by Debbie.
FRitW wants to see dinosaur bones. He thinks that would be simply the coolest experience ever.

I think that would be cool too, but how about lifesize animatronic dinosaurs? Talk about cool! I have had a hard time finding museums within a reasonable distance with dinosaur bone exhibits. Oh some museums have a few, but I'd love for FRitW and all of us to really get some dinosaur exposure! So when I received an email about the Heard Natural Science Museum and Wildlife Sanctuary in McKinney, Texas I knew I had found our destination.

The Heard Museum has dinosaur skeletons - 3 complete ones on display as well as a skull and a cave bear skeleton. This was our answer - and the exhibit of Lifesize Animatronic Dinosaurs, well that was just icing on the cake! Problem: The exhibit was only on display for one more week. Solution: GO NOW!

Dad has a new position at work that is requiring more travel, so we took advantage of his absence and headed to McKinney last Saturday. We met up with Aunt Debbie and Pumpkinhead at the museum. It was so fun to follow the path to find the large, realistic, moving dinosaurs among the plant life. MT was pretty frightened but everyone else loved it! He clung tight whenever we approached one of the beasts.

Most of them roared or growled, moved heads and mouths and occasionally arms. Kirk was a little disappointed - he would have liked to see some real movement. He probably wouldn't have been satisfied if they had chased him. (Boy, that would have been fun to see! Heehee!)

We walked the entire trail twice and parts of it three times. Maggie was impressed with a tree that had been struck by lightning but was still alive. Only the outside edges of the trunk remained, but it was enough to provide nutrition to the branches and leaves.
Photo by Aunt Debbie. I love how the sunlight shines through the branches!

Inside there were exhibits of various fossils, a 'bug' exhibit - which covered insects and arachnids - both live creatures and methods of studying them. A really neat feature of the bug exhibit was this scale which showed your weight in terms of number of fleas, small ants, house flies, june bugs, and scorpions. Amazing - as long as I never, ever, ever encounter that many critters!
We also found the dinosaur skeletons. Oh, FRitW had the hardest time waiting for everyone to be ready to move on to the skeletons!

The exhibit pictured below was like an I Spy book. MT particularly liked finding each animal or plant pictured at the bottom of the exhibit. These were all examples of local flora and fauna.

Local kids found this 5-legged toad in their backyard. Photo by Debbie.

We intend to visit Heard Natural Science Museum and Wildlife Sanctuary again. There are multiple trails that I would love to try out in each season. Oh, and FRitW says that seeing the dinosaur bones was just as cool as he thought it would be.



Deb said...

I totally missed the bug-weight scales and the I Spy wall. But there is my kid right out in front! Did I take a nap or something while we were there?

Lorus! said...

Now that you're 28 you need extra sleep Debbie!
I think you were reading that big log slice while they were finding all of the critters.