Body Worlds Animals Inside Out Exhibition

Body Worlds Animals Inside Out exhibition has recently opened at the Life Science Centre and will run until the 3rd Jan 2017. The exhibition features over 100 real animal specimens which have been preserved by a process called plastination. The process was invented by Dr Gunther von Hagen. The exhibition gives you a glimpse under the skin of animals allowing you to see their anatomy. You can see the nerves and blood vessels, bones and internal organs which gives you a deeper understanding of how intricate these animals are. Some of the animals are huge, an elephant and a bear and such a lot of work must have gone into preserving these creatures. All the specimens have been donated by zoos and animal groups after death, no animals were harmed to create the exhibition.
 
Centre for Life Newcastle
 
We were invited along to the Life Science Centre to experience the exhibition and were looking forward to finding out more about it. Before I went I did wonder if it might be a bit gruesome but I need not have worried, the exhibition was absolutely fascinating and a great way to learn about biology. My son, who is fifteen was really engrossed and learnt a lot. Due to the nature of the exhibition it is recommend that children are over eight, but the Life Science Centre recognise that you know your own children best and will know if it is suitable.
 

Body Worlds Animals Inside Out Exhibition

The first thing we saw when entering the Body Worlds Animals Inside Out exhibition was a dog. My son instantly said it’s Eddie, who is our Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. Whilst this is a different breed of dog the way it has been preserved captured the essence of the animal. Caught in mid flight catching a Frisbee in its mouth it showed the playful nature of the animal. We were able to see clearly how all the muscles in the animal worked together to enable it to move.

A dog at body worlds animals inside out exhibition

 

These skeletons clearly showed the difference between man and animal, it was interesting to see the comparison in the way the bones are structured. You can see clearly how the skeleton has adapted for different types of movement.

 A skeleton at Animals Inside Out
 
Have you ever wondered why a shark is such a powerful creature? Seeing it’s muscle structure gives an indication of how well it has adapted to it’s watery environment. They have two types of muscle, red muscle and white muscle. The red muscle helps them swim slowly for a long period of time and the white muscle is used for bursts of speed.  Looking at the shark you can see how the placement of the white muscle makes bursts of speed easy.
 
shark at body worlds animals inside out
 

In this pig you can clearly see how the blood vessels carry the blood around the body with a fine web of blood vessels and capillaries. It is amazing how many are needed to get the blood around the body from the heart.

Pig at animals inside out
 
The most fascinating part of the exhibition were the larger animals. The horses head was amazing and as well as showing the intricate network of muscles still retained the nature of the horse. You could easily image it eating a sugar cube from your hand.
 
Horse at animals inside out exhibition
 
The Billy Goat is perfectly adapted for climbing, his strong limbs and wide hooves are ideal for tackling mountains. His stomach is adapted for eating plants and the horns on his head are using for fighting.
Billy goat at Animals Inside Out Centre for Life
 

It is only when you see the larger animals like the cow, gorilla and elephant that you realise how much work has gone into preserving these animals. The elephant took two and half years to preserve and only when you look at it do you realise how many muscles are inside the animal to allow it to move. It is really amazing to see animals in this way and we certainly learnt a lot from the experience.

Cow at animals inside out
 
Gorilla at Animals Inside out exhibition
 
Elephant at animals inside out exhbition
 
Bear at Animals Inside Out
 
The Body Worlds Animals Inside Out exhibition is well worth a visit. We learnt so much while we were there and it is really fascinating to be able to see under the skin of the animals in this unique way.  It shows how the animals have evolved to fit their environment and is a really engaging and fascinating exhibition. I would recommend that you visit if you get the chance.
 

What else can you see at the Life Science Centre?

Animals Inside Out is a fascinating exhibit and you can certainly spend at least an hour looking around but there are plenty of other things to do at the Life Science Centre. There are hands on exhibitions like the Curiosity Zone and Experiment Zone as well as a special area for the under sevens, the Young Explorers Zone. There is a 4D Motion Ride, the Planetarium and live shows in the Science Theatre.

On this visit we took in a show in the Science Theatre which was all about the history of flight. We got to learn about how we ended up with the aircraft we have today due to the pioneering efforts of a number of notable figures like the Wright brothers. It was really interesting and well presented. We also took in a show at the planetarium which showed the difference in the skies above Newcastle and the dark sky park in Kielder Water.  When in Kielder you can see around 3000 more stars due to the lack of surrounding light in the area. We got a tour of the stars that you can see in the night skies at this time of year as well as a view of what it is like in the International Space Station. It was an absorbing experience and I learnt a few new constellations to look for at night.

The 4D motion ride is always worth a visit. Every time we go it is a different ride, you sit in a seat in front of a cinema screen with 3D googles. As the film progresses the seats move and you really feel as though you are taking part in the action.  With smells and sounds thrown in the ride is unique.

If you are hungry there are two cafes. The Life cafe serves hot and cold meals and has a great selection of sandwiches, salads and cakes. There is also a cafe in the gift shop that serves cold meals. The food was delicious and reasonably priced.

A ticket for the Centre for Life is £34 for a family ( 1 adult and 3 children or 2 adults and 2 children) or £14 for adults and £8.00 for children (aged 5 -17). It is well worth a visit as there is so much to do.

You may also be interested in reading about our visit to the Maker Faire at the Life Science Centre earlier this year.

We were invited to a bloggers afternoon at Life Science Centre and received complementary tickets. I was under no obligation to write about our experience and the opinions are my own.

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8 Comments

    • June 6, 2016 / 10:34 am

      I thought it would be creepy before I went but it is actually really interesting. They have taken the time with the animals and you can see the attention to detail that has been put in

  1. June 4, 2016 / 5:35 pm

    Wow Alison, you really must have had an amazing day. OH and I would find this as fascinating you and your family clearly did. There clearly has been a lot of work put into preparing the displays, 2.5 yrs just for the elephant is so dedicated. I recall many years ago doing an anatomy and massage course at college and we had the opportunity to see the human muscles and other structures at a university fairly near to us. It was fascinating seeing how thick the skin on the sole of the foot is forinstance.
    Angela x
    Angela / Only Crumbs Remain recently posted…Individual Queen of PuddingsMy Profile

    • June 6, 2016 / 10:30 am

      It really was amazing, you can see the care that has gone into the animals in the way their essence has been captured. Well worth a visit

    • June 7, 2016 / 10:36 am

      I thought it would be really gruesome but it was actually fascinating, so well done and very educational

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