- Last Updated on Thursday, 24 June 2021 10:10
Ancestors of some modern sea giants would walk on land on their four legs million years ago. It is hard to imagine today but ‘heredity’ manifests itself one way or another among modern inhabitants of the ocean. They breathe with atmospheric air, have got a placenta, feed babies with milk and have got certain skeleton features. A “family saga” about three orders of modern marine mammals – whales, dugongs and pinnipeds, dwelling in the World Ocean, is presented at the exhibition ‘In Water Again’. We can assure you, that the stories created by nature are going to thrill you much better than ideas of famous film directors!
Transformation of ancient terrestrial animals into modern marine ones is perfectly demonstrated by osteological and paleontological specimens. Do you know that hippos are the closest relatives of whales and that the first whales inhabited land and looked like dogs, that walruses are relative to bears and that otters and weasels are kindred to earless seals?
The most ancient animal the exhibition tells about is the Pakicetus. It was a common ancestor of present-day whales, looked like a dog and existed 50 million years ago. Following the instinct to search for food and occupy areas (by the way, the same wish makes humankind fly to space!), the Pakicetus moved into water from land millions of years ago to adjust to a new habitat.
A collection of ancient shark teeth, presented at the exhibition as well, tells about the laws of survival: a megalodon tooth reaches 18 cm, so its owner’s size strikes us!
Paleo art adds to the exhibition – this is the most scientific genre. These are pictures by artist Roman Evseev, he depicts extinct ancestors of modern marine mammals in their natural habitat. Actually, these are “images of the past” of our planet.
The display ‘In Water Again’ is on at the permanent exhibition ‘Depth’ (main building of the Museum of the World Ocean).