Colours in the natural world can be a warning sign or an attraction; a way of standing out or of hiding from predators and prey. Included in the rainbow display are examples of butterflies and moths with mimic and camouflage patterns.
The majority of the birds on display come from a collection bequeathed to the museum in 1903 by William Oxenden Hammond (1817-1903) and include very early and rare specimens. The Hammonds were local landowners and bankers. William Oxenden, like his father William Osmund (1790-1863), collected British birds and gave over 500 of their specimens to the museum.