What would it have been like to see a huge, elephant-like mastodon roaming our state?
The earth has been home to some spectacularly large animals. A few of them still roam or swim our world today. This hour, we take a look at the biology of these giants.
From chunky island-dwelling birds to the enormous blue whale, what do we know about why these creatures evolved to be so big? And why don’t we see more of them today?
Plus, with a UN report warning that a million species are at risk of extinction in coming years, are we at risk of losing those big creatures we still have?
- Dr. Nick Pyenson - Paleontologist at the at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History and author of Spying on Whales: The Past, Present and Future of Earth’s Most Awesome Creatures (@PyensonLab)
- David Quammen - Science journalist and autho; his book Song of the Dodo: Island Biogeography in the Age of Extinction explores the phenomenon of island gigantism. He is also the author of many other books, including most recently The Tangled Tree: A Radical New History of Life (@DavidQuammen)
- Dr. Emily Lindsey - Paleontologist at the La Brea Tar Pits in Los Angeles
Chion Wolf contributed to this show, which originally aired August 23, 2019.