Adapt to survive

Discovering Life Hall

Good for

All Ages


Level 2

Brain Juice Focus


No Hiking Shoes Needed!

Get ready for an indoor nature walk in our Discovering Life Hall — where everything from single-cell organisms to complete ecosystems will open your mind to the power and potential of living things. You’ll discover fossils, taxidermy specimens, 3D animations and interactive games that demonstrate how factors like genetics and environment are shaping the next generation of plants, animals and even bacteria!

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A museum patron looks closely at a display.

Sense This

Time to use your senses! Observe the sights, sounds, textures and smells of three different Texas ecoregions: the Pineywoods, Blackland Prairie and Chihuahuan Desert.

A father and son explore a museum display together.

Origins and Adaptations

What is life and how do species adapt over time? Explore theories on the origins of life through an interactive digital book and uncover the facts through insights from scientists who are making breakthroughs in cellular research.

Some young children engage with an environmental display.

The Power of Environmental Factors

Life on Earth is constantly changing. Explore how factors like pollution and climate change could lead to adaptation or extinction.

A young child inside a display's tunnel.

The World Beneath Your Feet

Pineywoods is right here in the Museum. Immerse yourself in this ecoregion when you crawl under a diorama and explore all that lies beneath the surface.

Sense This

Origins and Adaptations

The Power of Environmental Factors

The World Beneath Your Feet

Discovering Life Hall Scavenger Hunt

  • Find the rattlesnake and look closely – one of its fangs is made of clear epoxy!
  • Find the melanistic Leopard (burgundy-colored) from India.
  • Take the stairs down from Level 3 to get the best view of the Black-Maned Lion from Tanzania.
A museum patron looks closely at a display.

What to Do Next

Take what you’ve learned about cells and get up close and personal with them inside the Bio Lab of the Being Human Hall. Become a scientist when you perform a DNA extraction, examine your very own cheek cells or test which household chemicals kill microbes.

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