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Smithsonian Associates - Entertaining, Informative, Eclectic, Insightful

Evolution's Mysteries: Star-nosed Moles, Electric Eels, and Other Enigmatic Animals

Evening Program

Monday, November 16, 2020 - 6:45 p.m. ET
Code: 1A0129
Tickets
$20 - Member
$25 - Non-Member

Microscopic photo of a star-nosed mole embryo

STREAMING PROGRAM INFORMATION

  • This program is part of our Smithsonian Associates Streaming series.
  • Platform: Zoom
  • Online registration is required.
  • If you register multiple individuals, you will be asked to supply individual names and email addresses so they can receive a Zoom link email. Please note that if there is a change in program schedule or a cancellation, we will notify you via email, and it will be your responsibility to notify other registrants in your group.

PROGRAM DESCRIPTION

From star-nosed moles that have super-sensing snouts to electric eels that paralyze their prey, animals possess unique and extraordinary abilities. Biologist Kenneth Catania sheds light on the behaviors of tentacled snakes, tiny shrews, zombie-making wasps, and more. Beginning with the star-nosed mole, Catania reveals what the creature’s nasal star is actually for, and what this tells us about how brains work. He explores how the deceptive hunting strategy of tentacled snakes leads prey straight to their mouths, how eels use electricity to control other animals, and why emerald jewel wasps make zombies out of cockroaches. He also teams up with professional bait collectors to solve the enigma of worm grunting—a mysterious technique used to “charm” earthworms out of the ground.

Catania demonstrates the merits of approaching science with an open mind, considers the role played by citizen scientists, and illustrates that most animals have incredible, hidden abilities that defy our imagination.

Catania’s book, Great Adaptations: Star-Nosed Moles, Electric Eels, and Other Tales of Evolution’s Mysteries Solved (Princeton University Press), is available for sale.

BOOK SALE INFORMATION

UPDATED PATRON INFORMATION

  • Once registered, patrons should receive an automatic email confirmation from CustomerService@SmithsonianAssociates.org.
  • Separate Zoom link information will be emailed closer to the date of the program. If you do not receive your Zoom link information 24 hours prior to the start of the program, please email Customer Service for assistance.
  • View Common FAQs about our Streaming Programs on Zoom.

Inside Science

Location
This program is part of our
Smithsonian Associates Streaming series.