Visitors walking into Skeletons: Animals Unveiled! for the first time need only look up to be immediately blown away.
Hanging from the ceiling of the museum at Orlando’s I-Drive 360 is a 30-foot killer whale. The great sea mammal is one of more than 400 skeletons at this family-owned museum.
Gorillas, manatees, camels, elephants, cougars and birds are shown in clever poses and dioramas that provide young and old alike with a new respect for the animal kingdom.
Zoos and nature centers from across the country donate the carcasses of deceased animals to the museum so that they can further educate the public.
According to the facility’s curators, it can take up to four months for the skeletons to be fully cleaned. Part of the process involves Flesh Eating Beetles, also known as Dermestid Beetles. Tens of thousands of the scavengers are used to remove the flesh and tendons that humans can’t reach.
The beetles themselves are also on display at the museum…in escape-proof containers, of course.