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Animal Senses Series

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Catalogue Number:  BAM576
Producer:  Blue Ant Media
Subject:  Science
Language:  English
Grade Level:  9 - 12, Post Secondary
Country Of Origin:  Canada
Copyright Year:  2017
Running Time:  6 x 30:00
Closed Captions:  Yes


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From the earliest primitive life forms to sophisticated animals like mammals, primates and birds, animals have evolved powerful senses to perceive their environment. They have developed senses which can turn mechanical waves, airborne particles, and photons into information that helps animals find food, shelter, mates, and communicate with each other.

In Animal Senses we trace the evolutionary history of all the senses, from tiny bacteria to the most advanced sensory organs in the animal kingdom. It all started with chemoreception, the first sense that eventually developed into a sense of smell. Sharks first started using chemoreception more than 400 million years ago. Invertebrates and reptiles built on that powerful chemical sense. Touch is used by some animals that have extra sensitive skin or whiskers to help them navigate their world. Sight is one of the most important senses that animals use to find food. We tell the evolution of the eye from it’s original source - fish eyes.  While hearing, the ability to feel vibrations in the air has been developed from early amphibians. But hearing over land and in the water, is completely different, so animals had to adapt different types of ears to help with this.

Humans seem to have mastered life on this planet, but when it comes to senses, we share most of the same ones with the animal kingdom. So how do we match up against the best of the best? 

One of the most interesting ways animals communicate is using a sixth sense...super senses that people could only dream about. From dolphins and bats using echolocation, to a small insect’s unbelievable ability not to get lost, and a strange looking electric hunter, there are always interesting questions that Animal Senses tackles.

The series answers questions such as: what makes a hawk’s vision so clear?; how can sharks detect traces of blood in the middle of the ocean; how does a manatee feel his way around underwater using only his whiskers; and can elephants feel thunderstorms from miles away?




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