Happy Darwin Day! Just as I did last year and the year before, I'm celebrating Charles Darwin's birthday with a series of PBS videos on the subject of evolution. This time, I'm not sharing clips of a television program, but videos from a PBS Digital Studios project, PBS Eons, which explores the history of life on Earth primarily through fossils. As a paleontologist, I approve.
I begin with the one video so far in which Darwin is mentioned, 'Living Fossils' Aren't Really a Thing. That's true even though Darwin himself coined the term.
Crocodiles, horseshoe crabs and tuatara are animals that have persisted for millions of years, said to have gone unchanged since the days of the dinosaurs. But even the most ancient-looking organisms show us that evolution is always at work.Looks like I'll have to stop using the term and show this video to people who still do.
I conclude with a video I plan on showing to my students this week, A Brief History of Geologic Time.
By looking at the layers beneath our feet, geologists have been able to identify and describe crucial episodes in life’s history. These key events frame the chapters in the story of life on earth and the system we use to bind all these chapters together is the Geologic Time Scale.I mention all the concepts and nearly all the people involved in my lecture on geologic time, so I may as well use a professionally produced and informative video to introduce them. I hope my students like it as much as I do.
I plan on sharing more of these videos in the future. In the meantime, stay tuned for posts about Valentine's Day and Paczki Day before returning to The science of the Winter Olympics from ASAPScience and the winners of 2018 WGA Awards.