Beautiful short film about decomposition of a whale carcass


25 Responses to “Beautiful short film about decomposition of a whale carcass”

  1. This is really neat. It would benefit from a time scale to indicate how long each phase lasts rather than just providing the total.

  2. petershultz says:

    This is a unicorn chaser! (at least if you love beautiful puppetry)

  3. Culturedropout says:

    That’s one of the most beautiful decaying corpses I’ve ever seen.  Not that I’ve… uh… Hey – what’s that over there???!? 

    I just want to know if the “sulphophiles” have to register and put little signs in their yards…

  4. GuyInMilwaukee says:

    Wonderfully done. May I suggest they depict the decay of the country’s infrastructure next?

  5. jsd says:

    Radiolab is a national treasure. 

  6. Ben Ehlers says:

    I laughed at loud at the hagfish. Thank you for making my morning brighter. 

  7. Tye Austin says:

    Cool vid.  Even cooler if you listen to RadioLab Podcast first

  8. Larry Rubinow says:

    -10 points for failure to use Harry Nilsson’s “Think About Your Troubles” as the soundtrack.  Otherwise, beautiful!

  9. Rich Keller says:

    I like this, but I kept expecting Isabella Rossellini to pop up and say, “What does he think I am, a black hagfish?”

  10. yupgiboy says:

    Larry, I immediately thought the same thing.

  11. shutz says:

    But what happens to a bowl of petunias in a similar situation?

  12. Halloween_Jack says:

    There’s something ineffably cool about the idea of an entire ecosystem, or even civilization, springing up in the body of an enormous creature. Futurama has done a couple of episodes along those lines (one in Fry’s body, one in Bender’s), and China Mieville’s New Crobuzon has a district called Bonetown, which features a gargantuan fossilized ribcage–no one knows how they got there, what sort of creature it was, or where the rest of the skeleton is.

  13. chaopoiesis says:

    Phase 4:  pie.

  14. Guest says:

    There’s also a short film about the energetic disassembly of a whale carcass.

    I wouldn’t exactly call it beautiful, but it is enlightening:

  15. garyg2 says:


    And always a pleasure to hear Rachels, most underatednest band ever.

  16. Spriggan_Prime says:

    I loved this segment on Planet Earth series Deep Seas episode.

  17. teufelsdrochk says:

    I propose all radiolab mentions now be preceded by…”MacArthur genius grant winner Radiolab”.

  18. dlbancroft says:

    Was just listening to this one, love radiolab – can really see why Jad Abumrad just won the MacArthur genius award, though not sure why he did over the other guy…

  19. Mister44 says:

    I LOVE deep sea stuff. I skimmed the video, and it was kinda neat with the puppets, but I like the real thing better:

    Warning – if you don’t like watching hagfish make short work of putrid flesh, this video is not for you.

    This is a fish, but it has my favorite giant isopods!

    :45 seconds into it, crank up “Yakkity Sax” and smile.

  20. teapot says:

    Thanks for reminding me about stinky meat.. That site taught me that anything can be a thriving ecosystem.

    Also this animation is really nicely done.

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