STL Science Center

STL Science Center

18 June 2012

Gastornis As A Star

This week the movie day sort of writes itself. There are plenty of tribute videos, a couple of self-made videos, and even a few that I want to save for the popular culture day on Thursday. However, as there is only one really documentary like show that I can find any clips of, I think I'll start the clips rolling with part one of that and leave it to the readers to continue onward from there. In the BBC special Walking with Beasts we got to see animals that ranged about between the dinosaurs and, at the very end, during the time of human being's rise to the top of the food chain. The very first episode of the short series took place in a Eocene forest and started with Leptictidium scurrying about in the leaves. Eventually the story turned to a female Gastornis and her solitary egg. This Gastornis is shown hunting as an ambush hunter, protecting her territory, and... well if you haven't watched it I don't want to spoil the ending for you. Instead, just watch the pieces of the episode starting here:


  1. Hello Ian,

    Since childhood, I have loved palaeontology. Now I am doing intensive research on prehistoric mammals and "mammal-like reptiles" (synapsids, cynodonts). I am especially fascinated by the Eocene: precisely the period in which the nasty Gastornis terrorized small animals in the zone of Messel, Germany.

    Please do an article on my favourite pet...Leptictidium...if you haven't done so already. I'd also enjoy reading about Oligokyphus and the Miacidae.

    Best wishes!

    1. I haven't done any of those guys yet, but I haven't done a specialized month lately either, so maybe I ought to look into another one on small mammals and mammal-likes.Thanks for letting me know what you want to see and check back!