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Birds-of-Paradise Project: Science Education Website

39 Species Captured in Intimate Detail

The Birds-of-Paradise Project reveals the astounding beauty of 39 of the most exquisitely specialized animals on earth. After 8 years and 18 expeditions to New Guinea and Australia, Cornell Lab scientist Ed Scholes and National Geographic photojournalist Tim Laman succeeded in capturing images of all 39 species in the bird-of-paradise family for the first time ever. This trailer gives a sense of their monumental undertaking and the spectacular footage that resulted.

But these images and sounds are more than just beautiful—they are the raw data that reveal to scientists how evolution works. Please visit the Birds-of-Paradise Project website with more than 50 videos offering detailed looks into the birds, the natural processes that gave shape to them, and the people that made it happen.

At once wondrous to behold and fascinating to contemplate, the birds-of-paradise are a premier example of evolution in all its complexity and power.