Behind the scenes

Explore the Extreme and Unbelievable!

Take a moment to explore the science behind Extreme Mammals and learn about where and how they evolved over time. You’ll discover what all mammals share in common, why they can look and behave so differently from one another, what challenges they face today, and how Field Museum scientists and others are involved in these discoveries!

Mammal Basics
Investigate the key characteristics and evolutionary ancestors shared by all mammals, and discover the difference between “normal” versus “extreme.”

Extreme Adaptations
Find out how inheritance—the primary mechanism of evolution—has generated a wide range of bizarre body types, mating habits, and ways of moving.

From Extinct to Unknown
Explore the environmental factors that shape evolutionary pathways, examine extinction issues mammals still face today, and find out how Field Museum scientists are involved.