Watch Again

David Attenborough's Rise of Animals: Triumph of the Vertebrates:

Many Animals Died by This Lake. Why?

Watch More
back to video

»Dawn of the Mammals

Many Animals Died by This Lake. Why?

Short | 02:45

The Messel Pit is one of the most remarkable fossil excavation sites in the world. But what accounts for the sheer volume of animal skeletons found there?

More About This episode

A mass extinction rid the world of dinosaurs 65 million years ago. With the biggest players out of the picture, the world was up for grabs, and a new branch of vertebrate would eventually take over. Join David Attenborough as he charts the fascinating story of the mammals, from their origins as tiny nocturnal forest-dwellers to their explosion in diversity and domination. Through new fossil discoveries, we chart how and when our ancestors developed hair, placentas, and milk, and laid the foundations for the major mammal groups we see today.

Return to Video Page