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The Nature of Sex

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From the sea horse that mates in an hypnotic underwater ballet to the rodent who copulates until he literally drops dead, THE NATURE OF SEX spans the globe to illustrate how an astonishing diversity of life forms find their mates and conceive, raise, and protect their offspring. This Web companion to the four-part series takes […]

The Body Changers

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Evolution makes the surreal seem commonplace in NATURE’s The Body Changers. In The Metamorphosis, Franz Kafka wrote about a hapless fellow who awakens one day to find he has changed into a cockroach. In the world of fiction, this is an example of surrealism; in the natural world, it typifies an everyday occurrence. Many animals have […]

Earth Navigators

A Hopping Plague

Migrating animals are often welcomed and celebrated as a sign of seasonal change. Red-breasted robins herald the coming of spring, while the mournful honk of a goose heading south hints at the coming of winter. But there is one animal whose migrations cause fear: the locust. As NATURE’s Earth Navigators shows, locusts look like grasshoppers and […]

Earth Navigators

Long-Distance Migrations

In the world of migrants, the petite Arctic tern is a champion. Each year, the robin-sized seabird, featured in NATURE’s EARTH NAVIGATORS, travels up to 20,000 miles from the Arctic to the Antarctic and back. The feat is even more remarkable, researchers say, because the bird almost never rests. It is constantly either in the […]

Earth Navigators

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NATURE follows the world’s most dauntless creatures in their epic migrations in Earth Navigators. Springtime brings greenery and color to the English countryside, signaling whooper swans to undertake an extraordinary and dangerous journey — including a 400-mile flight over open ocean — to their traditional nesting places in Iceland. Elsewhere around the world, seasonal changes […]

Obsession with Orchids

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NATURE explores why many creatures — humans included — seem to have an Obsession with Orchids. No flowering plant has captured the attention of humans, or stirred their passions, in quite the way that orchids have. In past ages, orchids — in all their 20,000 or so wild varieties — have been hunted and collected […]

Animal Attractions: Amazing Tales from the San Diego Zoo

Modern Zoos

Modern Zoos It’s not Australia, but koalas feel at home. If you are the sort of person who complains about overly large zoo exhibits that allow animals to stray from the most prominent viewing areas, you should take a closer look at what these wildlife parks are trying to accomplish. As “Gorilla Tropics,” “Polar Bear […]

Animal Attractions: Amazing Tales from the San Diego Zoo

Condors: Back to the Wild

Condors: Back to the Wild During the 1930s, an estimated 150 California condors lived in the wild. By 1987, that number was down to just 27 birds. Researchers believe that suburban sprawl, sport hunting, and pesticides all contributed to the near demise of this species. In 1987, the San Diego Zoo and Wild Animal Park […]