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Wildlife Museum teaches rich Idaho ecological diversity

The Wildlife Museum is now reopened for students and the community after being closed down for repairs in the Ezra Taft Benson Life, Agricultural and Biological Sciences Building.

Rob Coleman, a faculty member in the Biology department, said people go to the muesum to observe different types of wildlife species up close. He said the different animals displayed come from all over the world, however most are indigenous to the Eastern Idaho area.

Coleman said the museum was closed because of construction in the Benson Building, including ceiling repairs. He said the Wildlife Museum exhibit was put in storage for protection of the animals and the artifacts.

“The Wildlife Museum here on campus is one-of-a-kind museum when it comes to the east Idaho region,” said Rob Coleman, a professor at BYU-Idaho.

Coleman said some of the goals of the Wildlife Museum are to help others become more appreciative of wildlife.  The exhibit allows for students to have opportunites to help the community. It gives more options and chances for the students to become more affiliated with different species and other breeds of the animal groups.

Coleman said the animals and species from the local region are there to help students to be more aware of the environment in Idaho.

“This gives an opportunity to expose the community to view wildlife and for the students to enjoy it,” Coleman said.

Coleman said this gives the students more of a sense of the animals that surround the campus in the region of Idaho.  He said this is a way that students can be able to really understand the rich and ecological diversity of Idaho.

“This can invoke a greater lover of passion for us by what surrounds us in the wild,” Coleman said.

Colemen said the Wildlife Museum is one of the largest, of similar regions.

“Ideally this is a place where the student could really be able to find peace and be able to reflect more,” Colemen said.

“If we are going to have a wildlife display, I would like to have it used for academic purposes.” said Van Christman, the dean of the college of Agriculture and Life Sciences.

Coleman said the Wildlife Museum also inlcudes a collection of animals that are found in Africa. The exhibit has lions, hippos, and a rhinoceros.

Coleman said the wildlife museum has been open for over 20 years.

He said tt has been a large influence in the Rexburg community since before Ricks College changed to BYU-I.

Tours can be offered for students and the community upon request. Students can find out more information by contacting the University Relations at 208-496-3125 or email campustours@byui.edu.

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