Contribute Now
NOVA | The Mystery of Easter Island | Science & Technology | WMHT
  • Click to contribute to WMHT
  • Click to make/update a sustaining contribution to WMHT
  • Click to join the WMHT e-news mailing list

NOVA | The Mystery of Easter Island

Last Updated by WMHT Web Editor on

Mystery of Easter Island Preview

Watch Wednesday, August 5, 2015 at 10pm on WMHT TV

A remote, bleak speck of rock in the middle of the Pacific, Easter Island, or Rapa Nui, has mystified the world ever since the first Europeans arrived in 1722. How and why did the ancient islanders build and move nearly 900 giant statues, or moai, weighing up to 86 tons? And how did they transform a presumed paradise into a treeless wasteland, bringing ruin upon their island and themselves? NOVA explores controversial recent claims that challenge decades of previous thinking about the islanders, who have been accused of everything from ecocide to cannibalism. Among the radical new theories is that the islanders used ropes to “walk” the statues upright, like moving a fridge. With the help of an accurate 15-ton replica statue, a NOVA team sets out to test this high-risk, seemingly unlikely theory — serving up plenty of action and surprises in this fresh investigation of one of the ancient world’s most intriguing enigmas.

Phylogenetic trees can tell us where medical problems come from, and how to fight them.

PBS Nature News

Full Episode

At the very northern edge of North America is Ellesmere Island, where the unforgiving Arctic winds tear through the tundra, dipping temperatures to 40 below zero...

Wolf Pack Teams Up to Fight Off Intruder

Appearing out of nowhere, a rogue female wolf tries to kill and eat the pups of a rival pack. Outnumbered and surrounded, the stranger’s assault is pure madness. Will...

NOVA scienceNOW News

Five Reasons to Eat Insects

Save room for bugs! They're the future of green cuisine.