Live lizards will be featured this fall in the Delaware Museum of Natural History’s newest special exhibit, “Here Be Dragons,” which explores real and mythical dragons. The exhibit runs Sept. 30–Jan. 7.
The exhibit is split into three dragon realms: Medieval, Asian and Paleontology, each with a colorful and intricately designed set such as a fire-breathing dragon poking his head out of a castle. The Medieval realm takes visitors through the dragons of myth and lore from European literature and includes a replica castle and a large replica of the Hungarian Horntail Dragon featured in the “Harry Potter” series. The Asian realm explores the mystique of dragons in Asian culture and includes a full-sized Chinese dragon costume display and a dragon tattoo station. The Paleontology realm lets kids get hands-on with a “dino-dig,” where they can put on goggles and grab a brush to unearth fossils just like a real paleontologist.
The exhibit features 15 real-life lizards from 10 species, including the albino green iguana, plumed basilisk, black throat monitor, European legless lizard, roughneck monitor, Egyptian uromastyx, Chinese water dragon, frilled dragon, bearded dragon and club tail iguana. A particular favorite is the bearded dragon, a lizard from Australia that looks like a miniature version of the mythical dragons found in books and movies. When bearded dragons meet, they do a dramatic display where their pointy beards are expanded to make them looker bigger and fiercer.
Another featured creature is the black-throated monitor lizard. Though they look fierce, black-throated monitors are known for their quiet temperament. In the wild, they will lash their long tail if threatened, just like mythical dragons.
In coordination with the exhibit, DMNH is hosting several dragon-themed events this fall: “Movie Night at the Museum: ‘Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them‘” on Oct. 7, “Harry Potter and the Science of Sorcery“ on Oct. 14, “Slithers and Scales” on Oct. 21, “Night at the Museum: Dragons after Dark” on Oct. 21 and more.
For the complete schedule and more, visit dmnh.org.