Birds of Paradise: Amazing Avian Evolution

September 19, 2015 to January 3, 2016

This exhibition is now closed!

Click here to see our current special exhibit.

Meet 39 divas of the avian world!

Found only in Papua New Guinea and parts of Australia, birds of paradise are a case study in the power of evolution. Their fantastic plumes, bizarre courtship displays, and wild calls are a result of millions of years of sexual selection at work in an environment with plentiful food and no natural predators.

Fascinating stories of groundbreaking research and adventure paired with amazing footage and photography are the foundation of this highly interactive exhibition. Birds of Paradise captures these unique species, with stunning imagery, compelling video, soundscapes, artifacts, and engaging educational activities for all ages.


Birds of Paradise is based on the research of photographer Tim Laman and Cornell ornithologist Edwin Scholes who made 18 expeditions over eight years to the remote rain forests of New Guinea. In 2004, Scholes and Laman set out to complete the first comprehensive study of all birds of paradise. They have amassed photographic and video coverage of all 39 known species and documented several new behaviors.

Find out more about the Birds of Paradise Project here.

Major Sponsors: R. Harold Burton Foundation and My Good Fund.
 
Birds of Paradise has been co-developed by the National Geographic Society and the Cornell Lab of Ornithology.