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Awesome Nature

The Biggest Frog That Ever Lived

The Biggest Frog That Ever Lived

While it’s nowhere nearly as large as the world’s largest penguin, the 16″ long, 10-pound frog known as Beelzebufo was still an impressive creature. PBS Eons explains the few things we know about this giant, blobby amphibian that was native to Madagascar.

10 Million Starlings Swarming

10 Million Starlings Swarming

In this footage from the 2009 BBC Earth special Superswarm, we get an up-close look at a mass of roughly 10 million starlings as they fly in formation over Rome, Italy. Of course, with millions of birds comes a whole lot of bird poop. We’d love to see a sequel recorded with modern 4k cameras.

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Life in Color with David Attenborough

Life in Color with David Attenborough

Famed nature show host David Attenborough returns with a three-part series about how color plays a role in the biology and evolution of animals. Colors can be used for camouflage, to scare off predators, or to help win mates. The series used specially-developed cameras in order to reveal what other animals see from their perspective. On Netflix now.

The Bizarre Physics of Fire Ants

The Bizarre Physics of Fire Ants

You never want to get too close to a mound of fire ants. But from the comfortable distance of your browser, they’re neat little buggers. Vox explores some of the fascinating ways in which colonies stick together to form structures, and how they can act as both a solid or fluid.

Making a Miniature Rain Garden

Making a Miniature Rain Garden

Model maker asu_green11 built this wonderful living diorama which replicates the look of a bamboo forest. In addition to its greenery, it features a pump and a water diffuser grid which produce rain for the miniature scene. It took several tries to get the rain just right, but the finished effect is delightful.

True Facts: Trap Jaw Ants

True Facts: Trap Jaw Ants

With the help of footage from researchers, ZeFrank provides his lighthearted insights on the Odontomachus, a genus of ants with jaws that can open 180-degrees, then shut like a bear trap. In addition to grabbing prey, they can use their mandibles to eject unwanted intruders or extract themselves quickly from a threat.

Iceland Volcano Time-Lapse

Iceland Volcano Time-Lapse

We’ve seen some incredible but brief close-up footage of the Fagradalsfjall volcano eruption. Now watch 18 days of volcanic activity condensed down to five minutes in this time-lapse video that stebbigu created from the Icelandic National Broadcasting Service’s live streams of the eruption.

Up Close with Siphonophores

Up Close with Siphonophores

Siphonophores are deep-sea colonies of organisms that link together to work as one. Each section provides a different function, including buoyancy, propulsion, feeding, reproduction, and defense. Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute take us deep beneath the ocean to witness some of these unique creatures.

How Spiders Fly

How Spiders Fly

Despite their lack of wings, spiders can actually take flight. This video from the University of Bristol video explains a process called ballooning, in which spiders take advantage of static electrical charges and wind currents to carry silk – and their bodies – through the air.

Metric Paper & Everything in the Universe

Metric Paper & Everything in the Universe

Unlike US paper sizes, metric paper sizes like A3 and A4 can be folded into quarters to make smaller standard size sheets. CGP Grey explains the satisfying math of this paper sizing standard, then zooms in and out to see how it relates to the exponential nature of the universe.

Drone Flies Over an Active Volcano

Drone Flies Over an Active Volcano

On March 19, 2021, Iceland’s Fagradalsfjall volcano started erupting for the first time in over 6,000 years. Drone pilot Björn Steinbekk captured this incredible aerial footage of the searing hot lava as it flows from top of the geological marvel. We’re impressed that the drone survived the intense heat. More footage here.

Becoming

Becoming

Filmmaker Jan van Ijken captured this amazing microscopic scale time-lapse footage of the development of an amphibious alpine newt. Watch in awe as it grows from a single cell to a complete organism in just 6 minutes. More here.

True Facts: Deception in the Rainforest

True Facts: Deception in the Rainforest

Among the awesome creatures in the rainforests are animals and insects that can camouflage into their surroundings, along with ones designed to scare off predators. Zefrank talks about these amazing evolutionary traits, accompanied by incredible imagery by photographers David Weiller and Thomas Marent.

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Wild Love

Wild Love

(Gore) While camping in the woods, a couple inadvertently leaves their mark in a horrific way. Their crime won’t go unpunished, though, as they also left behind photographic evidence. Nature strikes back with a vengeance in this darkly-comic short film from animation students at Ecole des Nouvelles Images.

True Facts About Tardigrades

True Facts About Tardigrades

Tardigrades may only measure about 0.5mm long, but these teensy water-dwelling critters are some of the toughest organisms known to humankind, having survived exposure to nuclear radiation and the vacuum of space. Zefrank provides an in-depth look at these strange, see-through dudes and what makes them tick.

Why Does the Ocean Smell Like That?

Why Does the Ocean Smell Like That?

If you’ve been to the beach, you know the ocean has a distinctive smell. While salt and dead fish are certainly part of the aroma, host Rose Bear Don’t Walk of SciShow explains what’s responsible for the water’s primary aromas, and how those organisms meaningfully impact the Earth’s ecosystem and climate.

Dance of the Starlings

Dance of the Starlings

Nature photographer Marco Valk captured some incredible footage of starling murmurations in the sunset skies over Geldermasen in the Netherlands. The birds travel in massive flocks to provide safety from predators and warmth at night while at the same time offering humans one of the most spectacular shows on Earth.

Are Bats OP?

Are Bats OP?

Bats are often blamed for spreading disease, but is that their only skill? TierZoo looks at some of these little nocturnal flyers’ other abilities to determine just how capable they are of fending for themselves in the meta. They’re extremely mobile but have limited strength and defenses.

True Facts: Army Ant Riders

True Facts: Army Ant Riders

ZeFrank takes a few minutes to explain the fascinating habits of Eciton army ants, from the massive community structures they build using their bodies, to their coordinated swarms, to their killer instincts and protein-rich dietary habits. You’ll also meet some unique insects that like to hitch rides on the ants.

A Perfect Planet: Extended Trailer

A Perfect Planet: Extended Trailer

This BBC Earth nature series explores how our planet provides the ideal habitat for life to flourish, from volcanoes forming land to the endless movement of oceans to the importance of weather and climate. But as host David Attenborough explains, humans have disrupted that fragile balance and need to take action.

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True Facts About Killer Tongues

True Facts About Killer Tongues

Lighthearted nature show host Zefrank teamed up with research scientist Dr. Kurt Schwenk on this special episode about snakes and lizards. Along the way, you’ll get up close and personal with a variety of long and stretchy tongues, and learn all about their unique evolutionary traits.

Solar Eclipse Music Video

Solar Eclipse Music Video

Back in 2015, Faroe Islands doom metal band Hamferð performed a moody, acoustic version of their track Deyðir varðar while a solar eclipse played out behind their backs. They timed the live performance perfectly and managed to resist the urge to turn around as day turned to night and back. (Thanks Kartin!)

Chill with a Polar Bear

Chill with a Polar Bear

The PBS Nature series Spy in the Wild 2 used hidden cameras to get gets up close and personal with a polar bear. Watch in awe as the majestic white beast wanders the ice and takes a dip in the chilly waters. If it weren’t for the risk of hypothermia and being eaten by a bear, we’d love to join him for a swim.

Robot Hummingbird Films Butterflies

Robot Hummingbird Films Butterflies

Nature photographers John Downer Productions flew a realistic, robotic hummingbird deep into a forest packed with hundreds of millions of monarch butterflies. The drone captured amazing footage of the swarm as they awoke from their long winter’s nap in Mexico. From the BBC Series Spy in the Wild.

Wall-climbing Goats

Wall-climbing Goats

Most animals need a certain amount of salt and calcium in their diets to survive. Because their need for these minerals is so strong, these wild goats known as ibexes are willing to risk it all and climb the sheer face of a dam so they can get in some licks of its salt-covered rocks. From the BBC series Forces of Nature.

Birds in Bubbles

Birds in Bubbles

Researchers in London, England used a fascinating method to view the aerodynamic properties of flight. Using helium-filled soap bubbles, they were able to visualize the vortices created by birds’ wings, and made interesting observations about the role their tail feathers play in flight. Details here.

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