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Smithsonian dinosaur hall YouTube videos

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Note: the title card of the above YouTube video
takes 60 seconds to disappear, so make a sandwich or advance the status bar up to the one minute mark. Thereafter the video lasts nearly 50 minutes and the tour is extremely slow, moving between only a few exhibits during the hour. Streamed live June 14, 2019.

Host: Kallie Moore from PBS Eons
interviews Adam Pritchard from the Smithsonian.

Discussion of T-rex starts at 1:45 followed by audience questions at 7:10.

Birds are dinosaurs: discussion starts at 12:25 and includes an insert video at 13:25. It’s fun to see John Ostrom as a strong, young, shirtless man out in the field. I only knew him as a portly, elderly professor. The hosts then discuss feathers for warmth. Regrettably, that doesn’t explain the origin of feathers, which could not provide insulation until they were numerous and large.

The hosts move on to a skeleton of Diatryma (= Gastornis), a giant flightless bird and more audience questions follow. At 16:00 Pritchard did not seem to know that this specimen is exactly what it looks like, a giant parrot, but he did describe it as plant/seed eater.

Mammals including the giant ground sloth appear at 25:25 and an audience question at: 32:00 asked which bird survived the K-T boundary to produce the modern birds? Pritchard mentions Vegavis, which is correct, but incorrectly nests it with chickens and ducks, which don’t nest together in the LRT (but oddly and illogically do so in many traditional studies). In the LRT Vegavis nests at the base of all living birds, but we also have a chicken ancestor, Eogranivora, in the Early Cretaceous. That taxon is also a descendant of Vegavis in the LRT, which puts a Vegavis genesis much earlier than its Latest Cretaceous appearance in the fossil record.

At 46:25 Pritchard finishes off by describing how to become a paleontologist.

An earlier video
from the Smithsonian (NMNH) can be found here:

The second video shows what the dinosaur hall used to look like prior to 2014.
The hall was closed then and refurbished over the last several years, resulting in the video above with Pritchard and Moore hosting.


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