Canadian Museum of Nature
Tourism Region: National Capital Region
The Canadian Museum of Nature is Canada’s national natural history and natural science museum. It promotes awareness of Canada’s natural heritage through permanent and travelling exhibitions, public education programmes, active scientific research, the maintenance of a 10-million-specimen collection and a comprehensive Web site, nature.ca. A founding member of the Alliance of Natural History Museums of Canada, the Museum is working with partners to expand its national service and to develop national programmes about the natural environment.
Behind our public face is a vibrant, multi-layered, multi-faceted organization composed of research scientists, collection specialists, education and multimedia specialists, and innovators.
About the Collections
The Canadian Museum of Nature's 24 major science collections represent Botany, Vertebrates, Invertebrates and the Earth Sciences. Our holdings also include a Library containing over 43,000 books and 100,000 volumes of periodicals. Nature's Archives keep a nature art collection, a photo collection and our institutional archives. The Museum holds more than 10 million specimens representing more than 150 years of collecting efforts and containing many important type specimens. The collections continue to grow at the rate of about 40,000 specimens a year. Specimens in the Museum's natural history collections are loaned to other museums and universitites for study and display.
Approximate number of objects in the collections: 10.5 million
The Museum archives include a nature art collection, a photography collection of over 275,000 photographs as well as administrative and private records.
Architectural Records •
Cartographic Materials •
Electronic Records •
Prints and Drawings •
Films and Videos •
The Museum holds a small collection of nature art (about 1,800 pieces).
Painting • Photography • Prints and Drawings • Sculpture • Sketchbooks or Albums • Film and Video
National collection of 10.5 million specimens in the fields of zoology, botany, vertebrate palaeontology and the mineral sciences.
Plants and Animals (Biological Collections)
Endangered Species • Living Collections • Parasites • Scientific Specimens : Type Specimens • Zooarchaeological Specimens • Terrestrial Organisms • Aquatic Organisms : Marine : Fresh Water • Botany : Fungi : Non-Vascular Plants : Lichens : Mosses (Bryophyte) : Vascular Plants : Non-Flowering Plants : Seed Plants • Zoology : Invertebrates : Mollusks (Mollusca) : Worms (Annelida) : Crustaceans (Crustacea) : Jellyfish, corals or sea anemones (Cnidaria) : Flatworms (Platyhelminthes) : Roundworms (Nematoda) : Millipedes or Centipedes (Myriapoda) : Spiders (Arachnida) : Starfish (Echinodermata) : Insects (Insecta) : Sponges (Porifera) : Vertebrates : Fish (Pisces) : Amphibians (Amphibia) : Reptiles (Reptilia) : Birds (Aves) : Mammals (Mammalia)
Earth Science and Geological Collections
Minerals • Rocks • Meteorites • Precious Stones (Lapidary) • Drill Cores
Fossil Collections • Fossil Plants (Paleobotany) • Plant Spores and Pollens (Palynology) • Fossil Microorganisms (Micropaleontology) • Fossil Invertebrates (Invertebrate Paleontology) • Fossil Vertebrates (Vertebrate Paleontology)
Services & Activities
Visits to galleries and exhibitions; interpretive support for school groups and general public; lectures; High-Definition cinema; facility rentals for events.
Also inter-museum loans; permanent, temporary and travelling exhibits; specialized library with 74,000 books and serials on a range of natural history topics; books and microfilms, available for research purposes through university, museum or inter-library loan; reading room; gift shop and cafe on premises.
Archival Records, Library, Laboratory, object or scientific specimen identification, conservation and restoration, 3D imaging centre
Archival Records •
Conservation or Restoration •
Object or Scientific specimen identification
Throughout its history, the Canadian Museum of Nature has enhanced its exhibitions and galleries with innovative educational programmes, workshops and activities for schools and the general public. These programmes are designed and delivered by our staff of professional nature educators and our many dedicated volunteers.
Classes or Workshops
Discovery Room or Centre
: Age 0-4 (Pre-School)
: Age 5-11 (k-6)
: Age 12-17 (7-13)(Quebec: Secondary 1-CEGEP)
: Age 18 and up (Post-Secondary)
Other: Trading Post, Nature for Tiny Tots, Nature for Little Groups
Provide visitors with floor plans and other handouts, answer questions and direct them to exhibits and activities in the Museum.
Films and Videos
Accessible by Public Transportation
Children's Activities or Services
: Strollers Available
: Nursing area or Change Table
Information Centre or Desk
Meeting Room Rental
Special Needs Facilities
: Wheelchairs available
: Wheelchair access
Volunteer Services Available •
Volunteer Training Offered
Number of Volunteers: 156
Activities: Volunteers deliver curriculum-based nature workshops and on going public programmes, assist with research and collection projects (identifying, sorting and cataloguing specimens and recording data), and administration work.
Members of the Canadian Museum of Nature gain unlimited free access to the Museum and to over 300 other museums around the world. They are invited to special events and receive a 10% discount at the Nature Boutique. There is also a 20% discount for an annual subscription to Canadian Geographic Magazine.
Our new Nature Café, located on the main floor, serves a varied menu of soups, salads, sandwiches, pasta, freshly baked goods and fair-trade coffee. The museum also invites visitors to bring their own snacks and meals, which can be enjoyed in the Nature Café, PCL Plaza or Group Entrance.
Snack Bar or Vending Machines •
Picnic Area •
Catering Services •
Reception Facilities •
Other: YMCA on Argyle Avenue (behind the Museum)
General Information •
Virtual Exhibitions •
School Visits or Programs •
Directions or Map •
Local History •
Online Giftshop or Bookstore •
Other Internet Services
Click on nature.ca for all the details! Lectures, 3D theatre, Teacher Zone, Collections, Research, Membership, Making a donation, etc.
Publications and Products
The Canadian Museum of Nature produces publications and multimedia products for children, general audiences and science professionals.
Annual Reports •
Educational kits •
Tour Packages •
T-Shirts or Sweatshirts or Caps •
Commemorative Souvenirs •
Other: Press releases, stock footage and photographs, models and casts of specimens, specimen storage containers.
240 McLeod (at Metcalfe)
Canadian Museum of Nature
Box 3443, Stn D, Ottawa, Ontario
Hours of Operation
Open: Fall/Winter Hours
from September 6, 2011 to April 30, 2012:
Open Tuesday to Sunday, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (Thursday until 8 p.m.)
from May 1, 2012 to Labour Day 2012
Monday to Sunday, 9:00 a.m. to 6 p.m. (Thursday and Friday until 8 p.m.)
December 24, 2010 - closed at 2 p.m.
December 25, 2010 - closed
January 9 to 13, 2012 (annual maintenance)
NOTE: new admission fees take effect on March 2, 2012.
Admission fees until March 1, 2012:
Adults (18+): $10
Seniors (65+): $8
Children (4 to 12): $6
Children (3 and under): Free
Families (up to 5 people, maximum of 3 adults, minimum of one child under 18): $25
Thursdays: Free from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Group rates are available. Minimum 15 people per group.
Reservations: (613) 566-4701; Fax: (613) 566-4798