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Dive deep inside the Museum's collection to discover the past, present, and future of its approximately 33 million artifacts and specimens in this new series with original monthly videos.



EPISODE TWELVE

Six Extinctions in Six Minutes

Six tales of extinction, starring organisms with something to tell us about the time we’re living in now.
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 EPISODE ONE  

33 Million Things

Consider this your golden ticket into our world-renowned collections, with scientists and collections staff as your guides.

EPISODE TWO  

Turtles and Taxonomy

How do you organize 33 million things? Herpetologist Darrel Frost talks taxonomy—the science of classification.

EPISODE THREE  

Six Ways to Prepare a Coelacanth

  The story of the Museum's iconic prehistoric fish specimen leads to a primer on specimen preparation.

EPISODE FOUR  

Skull of the Olinguito

Ninety years after it was collected, Mammal #66753 was finally recognized as a new species. This is the tale of one specimen's journey from obscurity to scientific treasure.

EPISODE FIVE  

How to Time Travel to a Star

Our astrophysicists are searching through early photographs of the night sky and helping to digitize them along the way. 

EPISODE SIX

The Tiniest Fossils

Some of the Museum’s smallest specimens hold big insights about the history of Earth’s climate. 

EPISODE SEVEN  

The Language Detectives

An anthropologist and a computational biologist join forces to study a group of ancient languages.

EPISODE EIGHT  

Voyage of the Giant Squid

Getting a giant squid from New Zealand to New York is no easy feat.

EPISODE NINE  

Kinsey's Wasps

Before revolutionizing the study of sex, Alfred Kinsey gathered millions of gall wasps. How can big collections help scientists?

EPISODE TEN

The Dinosaurs of Ghost Ranch

Finding a fossil is just the first step.

EPISODE ELEVEN

Green Grow the Salamanders

A living collection helps researchers investigate a unique symbiotic relationship.

EPISODE TWELVE

Six Extinctions in Six Minutes

Six tales of extinction and what collections can tell us about life on our planet.


 
 

WATCH ALL 12 EPISODES

Shelf Life is a collection for curious minds—opening doors, pulling out drawers, and taking the lids off some of the incredible, rarely-seen items in the American Museum of Natural History.