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4/11 and 4/12: Pterosaurs and the Milstein Science Series for Families

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Kick off your weekend or jump-start your spring break at the Museum.

Pterosaurs: Flight in the Age of Dinosaurs

One must-see: the new exhibition Pterosaurs: Flight in the Age of Dinosaurs, which features the latest discoveries about this amazing group of animals and highlights new research into what they looked like, how they moved on land and in the air, what they ate, and more. “The effect is to make us wonder which is more marvelous: the creatures themselves, or the way they have been recreated,” reviewer Edward Rothstein writes this week in The New York Times, calling the exhibition “thoroughly entrancing.”

This model of Tropeognathus mesembrinus, a 110-million-year-old pterosaur species with a wingspan of more than 25 feet, hangs over the entrance gallery of Pterosaurs: Flight in the Age of Dinosaurs.

© AMNH/R. Mickens


The group—cousins of the dinosaurs—evolved gaudy head crests, and amazingly diverse shapes and sizes, before becoming extinct 66 million years ago. In addition to life-size models, eight rare fossils, and casts, interactives abound in the exhibition, including one that uses motion-sensor technology to let you use your body to fly a pterosaur-avatar as it hunts for fish or insects on a giant screen.

Fly like a pterosaur in the current exhibition about these flying reptiles. 

© AMNH/D. Finnin


 

Purchase tickets to Pterosaurs, and learn more. 

Milstein Science Series: Poseidon’s Poisons and Marine Medicines

Bring the family this Sunday to the Milstein Hall of Ocean Life for an afternoon filled with activities relating to the toxic species in the oceans.

While these organisms—ranging from snails to sea anemones—use poisons for defense and predation, humans are now harnessing their toxins as medicine. For instance, marine cone snail venom may help treat epilepsy and even Alzheimer’s disease.

Clownfish with Anemone (Not from Poison)

Most fish avoid anemones, which kill and eat small animals. But clownfish have a special adaptation—a thick layer of mucus that protects them from the anemone’s poison. Both organisms benefit from living together. The fish clean off parasites and may chase away the anemone’s enemies; in return, they get protection from predators.

Avioni/via Wikimedia Commons


Learn more from experts including Curator Mark Siddall, who oversaw the current exhibition The Power of Poison, which also features several live marine specimens.

Zoologist Jarod Miller will also bring a variety of toxic species for you to learn about (but not touch!), including a de-venomized cobra, scorpion species, poison dart frogs, and more. Please note: These animals would be toxic in the wild, but they are rendered benign by their diets or other means.

Learn all about the Milstein Science Series this Sunday, April 13, on the Museum calendar. The Milstein Science Series is free for Members or with Museum admission.

The Milstein Science Series is proudly sponsored by the Irma and Paul Milstein Family.

Tags: Weekends

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