Amazing Mammals to Take Center Stage at Raleigh Natural Sciences Museum
Photos courtesy of North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences
Oversized claws, massive fangs, extraordinary snouts and sharp horns. If your kids are fascinated by weird living creatures, don’t miss the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences' new exhibition opening Sept. 26. “Extreme Mammals: The Biggest, Smallest, and Most Amazing Mammals of All Time” runs through March 27, 2016, putting the spotlight on more than 5,400 living species, including ourselves!
We live in a world where a mammal can have a four-ton tongue and a bat can be the size of a bumblebee. This exhibition explores the diversity, ancestry and evolution of many species — ranging from huge to tiny, from speedy to sloth-like. Go to see spectacular fossils, reconstructions and life-like models — including a 15-foot-high touchable model of the extinct Indricotherium, the largest known land mammal, which weighed as much as three or four adult African elephants.
Through this interactive exhibition, visitors can learn about the diverse ways mammals have evolved to walk, hop, glide, swim and fly. Control the speed of an animation to get a closer look at exactly how mammals propel themselves across land, air and sea. Discover the evolutionary clues to its four-legged past in the model of Ambulocetus, a prehistoric ancestor of whales, also known as the “walking whale.” The remnants of hind legs inherited from this land-dweller can be seen in modern whale skeletons.
The exhibition also calls attention to the threat that one in four mammal species currently face — extinction. An Endangered Species Theater will spotlight faces of some extremely rare mammals, and visitors will get some tips on how to help conserve them. Exhibition tickets are available online at naturalsciences.org/extreme and at the museum box office (onsite and at 919-707-9950). Prices are $15 for adults, $10 for children ages 3-12 and free to museum members.