Are the Animals in Natural History Museum Real?

If you have ever visited a natural history museum, you must have marveled at the life-size animal exhibits. From towering elephants to ferocious lions, these exhibits are a sight to behold.

But have you ever wondered whether the animals in natural history museums are real or not Let’s explore this question in detail.

What is a Natural History Museum

A natural history museum is a place where specimens of animals, plants, and minerals are displayed for educational and research purposes. These museums showcase the diversity of life on earth and how it has evolved over millions of years.

Are the Animals Real

The answer is both yes and no. The animals in natural history museums are real but not alive. Let me explain further.

The specimens that you see in these museums are usually preserved through a process called taxidermy. Taxidermy is an art of preparing, stuffing, and mounting animal skins for display purposes. The process involves removing the skin from the animal’s body, preserving it with chemicals, and then stuffing it with materials like cotton or foam.

How do Museums Acquire Specimens

Museums acquire specimens through various means like donations from individuals or institutions, salvage operations, hunting expeditions, and even roadkill. However, there are strict laws governing the collection of specimens to ensure that they are ethically sourced.

Why Preserve Animals

Preserving animals has many benefits. It helps researchers study their anatomy, behavior, and evolution.

It also helps in species identification and conservation efforts. Moreover, these exhibits provide an opportunity for people to learn about different animals up close without harming them.


In conclusion, the animals in natural history museums are real but have been preserved through taxidermy for display purposes. These exhibits provide a unique opportunity to learn about different animals and their habitats without causing harm to them. So the next time you visit a natural history museum, you can appreciate these life-like exhibits even more.