Animals with Cameras: Series 1
In this groundbreaking new series wildlife cameraman Gordon Buchanan joins forces with scientists to put cameras on animals. Together, they make extraordinary discoveries about the lives of some of the planet’s most fascinating species.
In the first episode, the team uncover the hidden lives of three iconic animals. In the Kalahari Desert the team put cameras on wild meerkats for the first time, allowing scientists to finally understand what these miniature mammals get up to underground. Heading to Cameroon, Gordon works with scientist Mimi Swift, who is desperate to understand whether Kimbang, a four-year-old orphan chimp, has the skills she needs to be able to join a chimp family living wild in the forest. Leaving Africa for Argentina, the team have penguins carry tiny cameras far out to sea on an epic journey of up to 300 kilometres (200 miles). For the first time, scientists are able to see the tactics these charismatic characters use to catch their prey.
In Namibia, Gordon joins a cheetah conservationist who wants to see if three orphaned cheetahs, which she has raised from a day old, can learn to hunt effectively in the thick vegetation. The on-board cameras, the first to ever be worn by cheetahs hunting in Africa, In Australia, the team puts cameras on fur seals to try to see how they hunt their prey and avoid attacks by great white sharks. In South Africa, we deploy the first ever cameras on wild baboons in an effort to understand why these clever monkeys sometimes raid farmers’ crops.
In the heart of the Atlantic, Gordon Buchanan joins a team looking to discover why huge numbers of devil rays, fish with ‘wings’ nearly four metres across, and gather every summer near the Azores archipelago. In northeast Turkey the on-board cameras are carried by brown bears as part of a study trying to understand why so many bears survive in a small patch of forest. In southern France on-board cameras help scientists trying to prove that guard dogs can help protect sheep flocks from wolf attacks. The night-vision cameras show how the dogs work together as a team to fend off the wolves.