Living Collections

Hands holding two rats during rat training by the Live Animals Program team

Did you know NHM has a team of professional animal care specialists on site 365 days a year? They take excellent care of all animals on exhibit at the museum, utilizing the natural history expertise of our scientists as well as our veterinarian, who advises on any medical and nutritional needs. Because even a frog needs a doctor sometimes.

But I thought the Museum only had dead stuff!
Think again! We are proud to present to you Living Collections with over 100 species of animals from the tiny but powerful harvester ant to the beefy red-tailed boa, all cared for by professional animal care specialists.

Why are they here? 
Living Collections introduces visitors to creatures that are native to L.A. and from around the world, fostering intimate connections between people and wildlife by sharing amazing stories about animals that are often misunderstood or overlooked.

How Can I Meet the Animals?

During our scheduled programming, our friendly educators will share stories and insight into the natural history and personalities of our resident animals.

Many of our animals make appearances during our daily Meet a Live Animal presentations and at many of our festivals , weekend activities and Adventures in Nature Camp. Some of the animals you  might meet include a boa constrictor named Rabbit, a tarantula named Bean, a Virginia opossum named Ham, and even a one-eyed, rescued owl by the name of Odin!

Check our calendar to learn more about upcoming programming.