Exhibits at Roaring Brook

 Changing Land / Changing Wildlife Exhibits

The Nature Center has exhibits that illustrate how changes in land use in Connecticut over the past 500 years have resulted in changes in the flora and fauna.
Ancient Forest & Native American Exhibit

Ancient Forest Exhibit

The Ancient Forest and Native American exhibit show how Native Americans managed the land and showcase the animals that were common five hundred years ago.

Native American Longhouse

From Farms to Forest to Lawns Exhibit

Land use and wildlife has changed in Connecticut over the past four hundred years.

Starting in the 1600s, Colonial settlers cut down the forests and established farms and pastures throughout the State.

By 1850, the original forests had essentially disappeared beneath the plow. After many farmers abandoned their farms and moved west in the late nineteenth century, Connecticut's pastures reverted to thickets and eventually young mature forests.

Now, with rapid suburban development, the landscape is again changing and a new group of animals are taking up residence in our backyards.

Stop by for a guided tour

Forest exhibit with coyote and raccoon

Connecticut Farmland 1840s

Suburban animals exhibit with opossum and skunk

Thicket exhibit with bobcat and cottontail

Beaver Wetland Exhibit

The beaver wetland exhibit highlights the role of beavers in the Connecticut landscape.

Native American Longhouse


Visit our Native American longhouse to learn how Connecticut's earliest residents used the abundant resources of the area to meet their survival needs

Wild & Scenic Farmington River Exhibit

Wild & Scenic Farminton River Exhibit

The upper 14-miles of the Farmington River were designated as a Wild and Scenic River in 1994, and due to its success in facilitating river protection through a partnership between residents and the state, local, and federal governments, there have been keen interest in pursuing Wild and Scenic River designation for the downstream segment of the Farmington River and its tributary, the Salmon Brook. The lower Farmington River and its important tributary, the Salmon Brook, are rich in recreational, historical, and biological values. Protecting and enhancing the rivers through this designation, can result in local benefits such as federal assistance for implementation of the Lower Farmington River and Salmon Brook Management Plan, research studies, and enhanced cooperation amoung numerous river stakeholders. River designation may bring prestige and recognition to a region and can boost the local economy through tourism and possible funding through the NationalPark Service, matching grants, in-kind support, and volunteer assistance.

The Wild and Scenic Rivers Study, led by the locally-based Wild and Scenic River Study Committee, resulted in the ten towns located within the study area endorsing the Wild and Scenic River designation and the Lower Farmington and Salmon Brook Management Plan, the companion document to the Study Report. Many other local and regional organizations such as Roaring Brook Nature Center, have indicated their support of the designation. To view the Management Plan, please click here.

 Live Animals

Roaring Brook Nature Center is especially proud to be home to numerous beautiful birds of prey such as hawks, owls, and vultures.

To learn more about these magnificent animals, click here.

Inside the Center a small collection of live animals and animal mounts offer our visitors additional opportunities for learning. The live animals that reside in the Nature Center include snakes, turtles, frogs, and salamanders. To learn more about our native and non-native animals, click here.