One of the few free activities for kids on Nantucket, the Maria Mitchell Natural Science Museum is a cross between a classic natural history museum, a zoo, and a science center. It is a great place to learn about the plants, animals, and birds of Nantucket. Visit us to learn how Nantucket came to be an island, feed a painted turtle, and discover the six species of snakes that inhabit our island!
The Museum is now in off-season mode. Check out our calendar for upcoming animal programs. A regular schedule will start in February 2014 (It’s research report writing until then!).
Natural Science Museum Exhibits
Live Animal Room
The Natural Science Museum is home to snakes, frogs, turtles, insects, and spiders. These are the stars of our popular Carnivorous Critters and Meet the Animals programs. Some animals live with us year round and visit the schools in the winter. Other animals just spend the summer with us and are then released back into the wild each fall.
We have a collection of over 900 bird specimens representing most of the species seen on Nantucket. Some of these are on display in the Museum in seasonally changing exhibits that highlight interesting groups of birds or interesting behaviors.
An entire room in the Museum is devoted to things found on the beach. Identify shells, bones, and other objects and learn how Nantucket is in a constant state of change.
Hands-on Activity Areas
Each week our interns come up with new activities for visitors to try out and explore. Some of the standards include Ecosystem Jenga, bird gliders, coloring, and Nano technology activities. Come test your creativity!