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  • Animated Life: Mary Leakey

    Animated Life: Mary Leakey

    Animated Shorts

    (7 min 52 sec) This animated short film recounts the life and work of paleoanthropologist Mary Leakey, including her discovery of the Laetoli footprints.

  • The Origin of Flight: What Use Is Half a Wing?

    The Origin of Flight: What Use Is Half a Wing?

    Scientists at Work

    (8 min 16 sec) Biologist Ken Dial's study of how young birds use their developing wings sheds light on the evolution of flight in birds.

  • Mass Extinction: Life at the Brink

    Mass Extinction: Life at the Brink

    Feature Films

    Five times in Earth’s past, the vast majority of plant and animal species have been annihilated in a geologic instant. What triggered these dramatic events, and what might they tell us about the fate of our world?

  • Episode 3: Your Inner Monkey

    Episode 3: Your Inner Monkey

    Feature Films

    (54 min 51 sec) Join Neil Shubin as he links our hands, vision, and brains to ancient primate ancestors. PLEASE N​OTE: Due to international distribution restrictions, these programs can only be streamed in the United States and Canada.

  • Episode 2: Your Inner Reptile

    Episode 2: Your Inner Reptile

    Feature Films

    (54 min 41 sec) Join Neil Shubin as he links our hair, teeth and hearing to ancient reptilian ancestors. PLEASE N​OTE: Due to international distribution restrictions, these programs can only be streamed in the United States and Canada.

  • Episode 1: Your Inner Fish

    Episode 1: Your Inner Fish

    Feature Films

    (54 min 41 sec) See how the genetic legacy of a fish can be seen today in our own DNA. PLEASE N​OTE: Due to international distribution restrictions, these programs can only be streamed in the United States and Canada.

  • The Tool-Making Animal

    The Tool-Making Animal

    Scientists at Work

    (5 min 41 sec) Stone tools reveal a critical transition in the lives of our early human ancestors. 

  • Popped Secret: The Mysterious Origin of Corn

    Popped Secret: The Mysterious Origin of Corn

    Short Films

    (17 min 51 sec) Where did corn come from? Genetic and archeological data point to what may seem like an unlikely ancestor: a wild Mexican grass called teosinte. Also available in Spanish.

  • Great Transitions: The Origin of Birds

    Great Transitions: The Origin of Birds

    Short Films

    (18 min 59 sec) In the second film of the Great Transitions trilogy, paleontologist Julia Clarke takes us on a journey to uncover the evidence that birds descended from dinosaurs. Also available in Spanish.

  • Great Transitions: The Origin of Humans

    Great Transitions: The Origin of Humans

    Short Films

    (19 min 44 sec) Which traits distinguish humans from other primates? When and where did these traits evolve? Analysis of the major fossil finds from Africa, dating back to 4.4 million years ago, provides answers to these questions and reveals the history of our evolutionary origins. Also available in Spanish.

  • Anthony Barnosky and Kaitlin Maguire Measure Mammal Extinctions at the John Day Fossil Beds

    Anthony Barnosky and Kaitlin Maguire Measure Mammal Extinctions at the John Day Fossil Beds

    Scientists at Work

    (9 min 15 sec) Prehistoric extinction rates are calculated from fossil data in a paleodatabase and compared to today’s extinction rate.

  • Young Students Recognize a Transitional Fossil

    Young Students Recognize a Transitional Fossil

    Clips

    (4 min 44 sec) Neil Shubin brought the fossil of Tiktaalik to his daughter’s first grade class to see what the students would make of it.

  • Great Transitions: The Origin of Tetrapods

    Great Transitions: The Origin of Tetrapods

    Short Films

    (17 min 11 sec) One of the most exciting discoveries in the long history of fossil exploration is Tiktaalik, a creature with a mix of features common to fish and four-legged animals, or tetrapods.

  • The Day the Mesozoic Died

    The Day the Mesozoic Died

    Short Films

    (33 min 43 sec) The disappearance of the dinosaurs at the end of the Cretaceous period posed one of the greatest, long-standing scientific mysteries. This three-act film tells the story of the extraordinary detective work that solved it. Also available in Spanish.

  • How To Find a Dinosaur

    How To Find a Dinosaur

    Scientists at Work

    (4 min 5 sec) Dr. Lyson describes dinosaur digs as well as his focus on prehistoric turtle fossils.

  • Stratigraphic Principles

    Stratigraphic Principles

    Clips

    (2 min 21 sec) Dr. John Shea demonstrates the two main principles in the study of rock layers: superposition and association.

  • Rift Valleys of Africa and Plate Tectonics

    Rift Valleys of Africa and Plate Tectonics

    Clips

    (2 min 14 sec) African rift valleys were formed by the separation of tectonic plates. Water flows down to the valley floors, creating rivers and lakes.

  • Stickleback Environment

    Stickleback Environment

    Clips

    (1 min 27 sec) At the end of the ice age, the retreating ice sheet created many new lakes, some of which were colonized by sticklebacks.

  • Fossil Record of Stickleback Evolution

    Fossil Record of Stickleback Evolution

    Clips

    (2 min 34 sec) A quarry site in Nevada carries the evolutionary history of a population of stickleback fish that resided there when it was a freshwater lake.

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