Skip to main content

Want a daily email of lesson plans that span all subjects and age groups?

Learn more

Is this the most successful animal ever? - Nigel Hughes

  • 338,427 Views
  • 412 Questions Answered
  • TEDEd Animation

Let’s Begin…

Prevailing for around 270 million years and encompassing more than 20,000 distinct species, trilobites are some of the most successful lifeforms in Earth’s history. When they sprung into existence, they were among the most diverse and sophisticated organisms on the planet and so had a unique perspective on the ancient world. Nigel Hughes details the rise and fall of these hardy creatures.

Create and share a new lesson based on this one.

About TED-Ed Animations

TED-Ed Animations feature the words and ideas of educators brought to life by professional animators. Are you an educator or animator interested in creating a TED-Ed Animation? Nominate yourself here »

Meet The Creators

  • Educator Nigel Hughes
  • Director Zsuzsanna Kreif, The Animation Workshop
  • Narrator Addison Anderson
  • Storyboard Artist Zsuzsanna Kreif
  • Animator Zsuzsanna Kreif
  • Compositor Zsuzsanna Kreif
  • Art Director Zsuzsanna Kreif
  • Composer Stephen LaRosa
  • Sound Designer Stephen LaRosa
  • Director of Production Gerta Xhelo
  • Editorial Director Alex Rosenthal
  • Producer Bethany Cutmore-Scott
  • Associate Editorial Producer Cella Wright
  • Production Coordinator Abdallah Ewis
  • Script Editor Alex Gendler
  • Fact-Checker Jennifer Nam
  • See more creators
Additional Resources for you to Explore
Explore the 20,000 distinct species of trilobites and their fossils, or learn more about trilobite morphologyanatomyecologybehaviorreproduction, and development, and how they relate to trilobite originsevolution, and classification.

Take a virtual trilobites tour with the American Museum of Natural History’s paleontologists Associate Curator Melanie Hopkins and PhD student Ernesto Vargas-Parra that includes a look inside the museum’s extensive trilobite collection, and a Q&A about field research, collections, and more.

Watch this short documentary about the natural history of trilobites, the pioneers of the Paleozoic era. 

Customize This Lesson

Create and share a new lesson based on this one.

About TED-Ed Animations

TED-Ed Animations feature the words and ideas of educators brought to life by professional animators. Are you an educator or animator interested in creating a TED-Ed Animation? Nominate yourself here »

Meet The Creators

  • Educator Nigel Hughes
  • Director Zsuzsanna Kreif, The Animation Workshop
  • Narrator Addison Anderson
  • Storyboard Artist Zsuzsanna Kreif
  • Animator Zsuzsanna Kreif
  • Compositor Zsuzsanna Kreif
  • Art Director Zsuzsanna Kreif
  • Composer Stephen LaRosa
  • Sound Designer Stephen LaRosa
  • Director of Production Gerta Xhelo
  • Editorial Director Alex Rosenthal
  • Producer Bethany Cutmore-Scott
  • Associate Editorial Producer Cella Wright
  • Production Coordinator Abdallah Ewis
  • Script Editor Alex Gendler
  • Fact-Checker Jennifer Nam
  • See more creators