Topic: leaves

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Why are sloths so slow?

Around 35 million years ago, Earth was populated with giant, prehistoric ground sloths like Megalonyx jeffersonii (named after Thomas Jefferson), Paramylodon, and Megatherium who, until around 10,000 years ago, roamed...

The Double-Crossing Ants to Whom Friendship Means Nothing

In the Tambopata National Reserve, located in the Peruvian Amazon, big-headed ants are 'hired' as bodyguards by young Inga trees who want to grow tall enough to reach the rainforest canopy. The rainforest is espec...

How Does it Grow? Pumpkins

"The U.S. harvests five hundred million pounds of a food we have no intention of eating..." and if we did decide to eat this particular variety of food, it wouldn't taste like what we'd expect. In this episode of ...

Hand-cranked kangaroo automaton (and friends)

As the kangaroo leaps, its ears wiggle. Its eyes roll. The flowers dance. Birds fly, and the cat's trying to hang onto a fish. This incredibly charming piece of mechanical mayhem, titled Hundredweight of Heads, was cr...

Making charcoal, baskets, & stone hatchets – Primitive Technology

In the modern world, we pick up a bag of charcoal at the market if we want our fires to start easily and get hot quickly. But what did humans from the past do when they wanted their fires to burn hot enough to, say, s...

Fine Feathers (1968) – Evelyn Lambart

From Evelyn Lambart, renowned Canadian animator and technical director with the National Film Board of Canada, this is Fine Feathers, a 1968 cut paper animation about two rival birds that trade their plumage for green...

Making a cord drill & pump drill from sticks & rocks

How far can you go without using modern technology? As a hobby, YouTuber Primitive Technology explores this question by making simple tools from scratch using no modern tools or materials. In the video above, he craft...

Spid-a-boo! The Jotus remus peacock spider waves its paddle leg

A newly discovered peacock spider, the Jotus remus -- 'remus' means 'oar' or 'paddle' in Latin -- waves his paddle shaped leg at potential mates as he hides the rest of his body. Though he can't see the female, he can...

Why do autumn leaves cause train delays? – Liz Bonnin

Why do 'leaves on the line' cause train delays, especially in autumn? The serious danger comes from a series of physics challenges: Leaves are sucked onto the tracks by the fast moving trains. The train wheels crush t...

The Real Reason Leaves Change Color In the Fall – MinuteEarth

Every autumn, green chlorophyll fades from the leaves of deciduous trees, revealing the underlying reds, oranges, and yellows. But why does the chlorophyll fade in the first place? Recycling! MinuteEarth explains. ...

Think Like a Tree – Problem solving with nature’s best ideas

Biomimicry -- imitating nature's best ideas in our design of materials, structures, and systems -- can provide huge leaps in our understanding when it comes to solving challenges. Example: How do we keep our buildings...

The Diary of Ochibi – Moyoco Anno’s stop motion ode to the seasons

From comic book artist Moyoco Anno and writer/director Masashi Kawamura, this is The Diary of Ochibi, a delightful stop motion animation that follows Ochibi-san as he explores spring, summer, autumn, and winter. N...

Time lapse summer lawn daisies grow, get cut, & regrow

Watch as new lawn daisies wiggle and push toward the sky past the previously cut stems in this video from photographer and nature time lapse YouTuber Neil Bromhall. In these two rounds of summer daisy growth, we catch...

Wooden zoetrope sculptures spin in the forest

Spinning Daggers by Benjamin Ducroz, a set of seven 3D wooden zoetropes or kinetic sculptures made from 18 different instances of modulating sine and triangle waves. For this video, three of the zoetropes were filmed ...

Seed germination to growth time lapses by Neil Bromhall

To see the unseen through technology is one of our favorite things, so we love watching Neil Bromhall's beautifully scored plant growth time lapse videos. Above, a compilation of germination to growth footage. Seeds i...

Helen Ahpornsiri’s intricate pressed fern illustrations

Assembled with patience, imagination, and a steady hand, Helen Ahpornsiri creates intricate pressed fern illustrations of honey bees, pheasants, magpies, spiny seahorses, weevils, moths, Totoros, and other creatures. ...

From seed to sapling – Time lapse of an oak tree

Over the course of eight months, Neil Bromhall filmed a sprouting acorn, one that he would eventually plant as an oak tree sapling in his garden: The acorn was collected in September and filmed in an underground s...

Dead stuff – The secret ingredient in our food chain

When you picture the lowest levels of the food chain, you might imagine herbivores happily munching on lush, living green plants. But this idyllic image leaves out a huge (and slightly less appetizing) source of nouri...

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