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Play Detective at the Museum of Natural History

Can you find the following 11 incredible animals in our world-famous ‘Dead Zoo’?

Giant Irish Deer: Can you see the antlers on the deer? They are the largest antlers of any deer species. We found a pair of antlers with a span of 4m. 

Giant Irish Elk

Peregrine Falcon: The peregrine falcon is the fastest animal in the world. Can you guess what speed it ca reach? The answer is an incredible 250km per hour during its hunting dive. That makes the peregrine falcon faster than a cheetah.

Peregrine Falcon

Rabbits: You can hunt for the rabbit diorama in the Irish Room as well. They live in big groups of up to 30 rabbits in underground burrows.

Basking Shark: Would you believe that this basking shark skeleton has been hanging from the ceiling of the museum for over 100 years? This shark is about 7m long but they can reach up to 12m. That’s the length of a double decker bus.

Butterflies: Do you like creepy-crawlies? Then, the range of insects and bugs available at the back of the Irish Room is the place for you. This collection is so huge that it makes up over half the specimens in the museum. It even includes 34 different species of butterfly living in Ireland.


Pilot Whale skull in the Discovery Zone: Use your detective skills to spot the skull on the blue cart in the Discovery Zone. You can touch it and even smell it, if you wish. All the waters surrounding Ireland are home to many whale and dolphin species, so the Pilot Whale skull will give you an idea of the scale of these creatures.

Zebra: You can recognise the zebra thanks to its black and white stripes. It can be found on the African Plains – please remember: Do not touch.


Fin Whale: Once you find this whale skeleton of about 20m long hanging from the ceiling, stand underneath it. You'll be standing under the second largest whale in the world. This particular whale unfortunately beached itself in Bantry Bay, Co. Cork over 200 years ago.

Fin Whale Skeleton

Giraffe: Spotticus is the name we've given our Giraffe at the musem. Spotticus is about 3m in height and stands tall above the other exhibits. A fully grown male giraffe can reach nearly 6m from the ground to their horns. It's hard to believe, but that would mean twice as tall as Spotticus.


Asian Elephant: How would you feel if you met the biggest land animal on the planet? Only one way to find out.

Asian Elephant

Tiger: Did you know that the striped pattern on each tiger’s coat is unique to them? It’s just like our fingerprints. We need to take care of these magestic, powerful creatures as there are only 5,000 of them left in the world. They are extremely endangered.


NB Please do not touch any of the exhibits, unless it states otherwise.

Why should visitors not touch the animals on display? Touching them would create wear and tear.

If you look at the baby zebra or “bald-tapir” behind the glass, you can see what happens when visitors stroke the animals over the decades… They lose their fur and in those examples, they have polished leather from years of handling/touching.

If you were to touch our elephant, walrus or rhinos, you would likely get sticky hands! Why? Because they were treated in the past with various oils. But at least our animals don’t bite.

For more fun activities, pick up one of our seasonal activity sheets from our reception desk.

And take a look at our Calendar of Events to see some of the wonderful events we have in store for you.