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Today on Roar...we've got a Tug of War challenge for the lions!
But it's not fair!
The cubs want to play, and the grown-ups keep hogging all the fun!
Hello and welcome to Roar. I'm Rani!
And THIS is Johny!
It's no good, Johny! Cheetahs can run up to 70 miles an hour!
You'll have to go faster than that to beat them!
-No, Rani! I can definitely do this! Let's try again!
-All right, then!
Let's get on with today's show.
Coming up today -
we're going to Africa to meet the cheetah.
But they're a threatened species, so what can be done to save them?
The hippos are the most dangerous animals in the park.
But are they any match for Croc Cam?
And the meerkats might watch out for each other,
but can they help the keeper when we put her on the spot?
Earlier on in the series, you saw the tigers pull this
two-and-a-half tonne truck, just with a rope and a piece of log.
Now, it's the lions' turn. Can they match them?
Once again, I'm in the truck with keeper Gemma,
while Deputy Head keeper Bob is doing the driving.
The park's lions are kept in separate prides.
We're going to start with the youngsters.
There are six in this enclosure, and they're all just two years old.
They're coming, they're coming! Who's this, Gemma? Who's this?
We've got Henry and Hugo here.
-Two male lions.
That's Henry now.
No, cos, you know...I don't know the lions as well,
but look at them all coming!
It's just unbelievable! Who have we got out here, Gemma?
At the moment, we've just got the four girls on the actual rope
and log, and the two boys are just wandering around it.
All our windows are getting steamed up cos it's a rainy day.
We can't open the windows because
there's a pride of lions outside and that's not safe!
So, we're having to wipe the windows to give you the best view!
Oh, wow! She's just totally pulling us!
So, is that you, Bob, or...?
No, that's definitely them!
You've got your engine on...
The engine's on cos they're pulling us uphill,
so I was just going to make it a little bit fairer, and get it level.
We want to get somewhere more level so they can have a good pull.
But they're not letting us go, so Bob's got the engine on to move us,
but, erm, they came out fast, and they want to play fast!
The female, now. Who's she?
This is Kimya.
Look at her go! Look at the way they crouch!
It's the power in the back legs, isn't it?
This is proper Tug of War, so we've got us in the truck trying to move
to get somewhere safe, so the lions have a good pull, and the lions
pulling us back because they're like, "We are playing with this!"
As long as she lets go, I'll be all right,
but obviously, as soon as they see any movement,
that's what attracts them to it, and they're going to basically hunt it.
Oh, no, no! Here they come!
OK, what kind of speed are we going?
It's round about 15 at the moment.
No problem. They're just batting the log with their paws
every time they get close.
-They're just having a bit of a play, now.
Oh, no! Oh, no!
Oh, man! Bob, you are missing a great sight back here!
We've got four lionesses running after this log.
And they just look amazing, don't they?
But these guys aren't the only lions in the park,
so they're going to have to share their new toy.
Stay tuned, cos later on we'll be going in with
the biggest pride in the place.
And then we'll see if the cubs want a Tug of War!
The park is famous for their lions...
..and their tigers.
But now here's a big cat they haven't got...yet.
This is the fastest land animal on Earth.
It can accelerate from zero to 60 in three seconds,
and reach a top speed of over 70 miles per hour.
This is the cheetah!
They may be awesome, but the cheetah is also a threatened species.
There are fewer than 13,000 left in the wild, and the number is falling.
So now, the safari park is about to make an important contribution
to the survival of the cheetah.
Their head of animals, John Cracknell,
has just flown 9,000 kilometres to South Africa.
He's on a mission to pick out
six cheetah who need new homes, and bring them back to Britain.
Cheetah are cats that really need zoos working together to
look after them for the future.
When an animal is threatened in the wild, it's a good idea to
spread a few of them around the world in safe breeding groups.
It's like an insurance policy for the species.
If you had all your cheetah in one place, disease, fire, injury,
something like that could wipe them all out.
To help John find the right cheetahs,
he's met up with top wildlife vet, Dr Charles Van Niekerk.
I'm a veterinarian that's involved with wildlife.
I work with a very diverse range of species.
He's done a lot of work with cheetahs,
and knows only too well the problems they face in some parts of Africa.
The commercial game farmer sees a cheetah as competition,
and what you find is that they persecute them.
They're shot on sight.
They are considered in some countries as vermin.
As a species, they are threatened.
Charles and John are on their way to a centre that has
over 30 cheetahs who need new homes.
At the Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre,
they not only breed cheetahs,
but also take in rescued orphan cubs and injured animals.
The ones that had to be hand-reared often become quite tame.
They specialise in cheetah, but there are all sorts of
other creatures here, too.
John and Charles meet up with Christo Schreiber from the centre,
to join in with the morning feed round.
It's a good way to see all the cheetahs,
so they can pick six to bring back to Britain.
The animals here are in large, separate enclosures
that are spread out over a couple of miles.
These are African hunting dogs, and they're an endangered species too.
But now they've come to the first cheetahs.
And they seem to be hungry.
Their meat has been carefully weighed out and prepared.
They each get about three and a half kilograms of meat,
and we also add a special supplement for those extra nutritions.
The best thing about seeing them at feeding time is that John can get
a good close-up look.
This is amazing. Just seeing how they interact,
what their appetites are like.
Just seeing their interest in the food
and they're behaving as they should do.
It's an important part of just having a look at
how these animals are and how they're behaving.
John can get a close look here, but later on he's going to get
even closer, as he tries to pick six to bring back to the park.
Of all the furry creatures in the world,
the furriest is the sea otter.
To keep them warm in the cold ocean, they have extremely dense fur.
So, while we have about 350 hairs per square centimetre on our heads,
sea otters have up to 125,000!
That's about 800 million hairs on an adult animal.
How soft would THEY be to cuddle?
Here on Roar, we're always trying to find new ways to get close to
the animals, and to capture exciting angles on their natural behaviour.
We've put cameras in some unusual places,
and tested the animals with some rather strange toys.
But now, we're ready to take on the biggest challenge yet.
To get close-up shots of the park's most elusive
and dangerous creatures.
Spot and Sonia, the hippos.
To do that, we're going to have to come up with
something pretty clever!
I've come to see what the team are cooking up this time.
I'm here with Jamie, who comes up with brilliant ideas.
-All right, Jamie?
-How you doing, Johny?
What have we got planned here, then?
Well, this is in fact Croc Cam. It's not at the moment, but it will be!
-This is the idea here.
-OK, let's have a look.
We're going to take a boat, cut the top off that boat,
and we're going to put it on the crocodile head that we've made.
So, what I've done is, I've got some insulating foam,
which you'd find just in your house, stuck that together and then
I've sculpted it back, but I need your help today to put some clay on.
OK, so that's where I come in. You've done all the hard work,
and I just look good putting some clay on the head!
-OK, where do I start?
-Grab some clay out of that bag,
what I need your help with, if I just move this forward...
-if I get some as well.
-Go on, then. Go for it, I'll move round here.
Basically, you're making a long sausage.
So, we're going to make that now. So, make a sausage on the table.
So, you guys at home see all the fun that we have on Roar,
but actually, look at that! This is all the thought that goes into
the things that we do here! And it's thanks to
people like Jamie, who works very hard behind the scenes.
Man of many talents! So have we any idea, Jamie,
how the hippos might react to seeing this crocodile in the water?
Er...no! We have no idea how they're going to react.
So why don't you join us later on and see how Robo-Croc gets on!
How do you know if your cat has swallowed a duckling?
Cos it has the down-in-the-mouth look!
What team do snakes support?
I don't know.
Two birds sit on a perch. One says to the other, "Do you smell fish?"
It's Ask the Keeper time, and I've got five inquisitive young
minds ready to grill keeper Becky about the marvellous meerkat.
-But the big question is, Becky, are you ready?
You're not! You'll have to be, because we're ready!
Guys, who's got a question for Becky? Go on, Abbie!
How long can they go without eating?
Pretty much, they dig and look for food all day.
They're always looking for food, but there is always one on lookout,
and they can stay up there to over an hour, so he won't eat.
What do meerkats eat?
We feed ours mealworms, cat biscuit, peanuts and chicks.
In the wild, it would be small mammals, small reptiles.
Erm, eggs, they love eggs. But also scorpions, they quite like as well.
That's what they eat.
How fast can they run?
Very fast. When they want to, they will run very fast,
especially cos of birds and that coming down in the wild.
They want to get away so they don't get eaten.
Are they timid?
They are very inquisitive, so they want to know what's going on.
And, can I just ask, what are they doing?
They're dying to get into that green thing!
Yeah, it's a plant pot, but underneath is some of their food.
We bury it for them, so they have to look for it and dig for it.
I think they've pretty much got in. There's one underneath.
Look at that cheeky one underneath! OK, any other questions?
Does their tail help them to balance when they stand on their back legs?
Their tail is used as a balance. So when they can stand straight up,
they're leaning on their tail a bit, otherwise they might topple over!
What's the tallest they can grow to?
About 30 centimetres, so like your school rulers.
That size when they're fully stood up.
Look at you, Becky. You think you've got this all sussed.
Well, we've got one more trick up our sleeves, because it's time...
for the killer question!
Come on, guys.
Look at this. I think Becky's sent the meerkats in to spy!
Come on, guys, whoa!
We're ready, but are you? OK, here we go, Becky!
Where does the word "meerkat" come from?
It means "marsh cat."
It's, erm, an African term.
Becky...I have to say, you're completely correct!
It does mean "marsh cat" and it's an Afrikaans term, so it is African.
What d'you reckon, guys? Thumbs up or thumbs down for Becky?
Thumbs up all round!
-You're very relieved.
Earlier on, we took our rope challenge into a pride of lions.
They played with it, they've pulled us uphill.
But now, Part Two, the second pride of lions.
It's bigger, but is it stronger?
What is different about this pride, Gemma?
It's larger, and they're older,
so they're much bigger and they're stronger.
Ah, you say older, you've got your cubs here!
With the cubs there, it's such a beautiful sight.
Like, before I was like, "Oh, I'm really scared!"
But now, I'm like, "Oh, they're so cute!"
She's just seeing this as a toy! She's off!
The cub's trying to get her down!
I think there's a bit of confusion in this pride
on exactly what they're supposed to be doing.
Hopefully, they should be able to pull us, now.
We're in a good position. It's reasonably level.
It will be on grass, but hopefully, if they work together,
it seems like the cub's trying to help as well, look.
Yeah, I don't know if that cub's helping too much!
Yeah, hindering maybe!
Ha-ha-ha! I love watching the cubs just climbing all over the adult.
-Cos this is what normally happens.
-Yeah, the cubs play with the adults,
and all the adults will let them pull their tails,
just climb over them. Cos the whole pride
will look after all the cubs.
I've got to say, it looks quite painful, though!
They have got sharp claws and teeth,
even though they're sort of 16 weeks old.
-Not as interested, are they?
-Not interested in pulling the truck,
they're more interested in playing with it and playing
in between each other with it.
Is that, maybe, something with their age?
Cos they're older, they don't want to play as much?
A few of them have been interested in playing,
but I think they just get, sort of, they give up easier.
So, Gemma, which lioness is that that just will not
-let go of the rope?
-That's Jazeera, she's about seven
so she's still quite playful.
So Bob, what d'you think about the difference between the two prides?
Well, I think the main difference being the first party were
a lot younger, more inquisitive.
This pride, a lot older, wiser,
can't see the point in trying to kill a piece of rope!
But I've got to say, they've both been amazing to watch.
But for me, just seeing those cubs is going to be a winner every time!
If you've been playing the Roar game
on the CBBC website,
you'll know that the trick to making the most of your park is to
get all the cheat codes you can.
We give out a new cheat code on every episode of Roar.
So, don't miss a show, and happy gaming!
Despite being strict vegetarians, hippos are absolutely deadly!
Out in Africa,
more people are killed every year by hippos than by lions!
They overturn boats and crush people, mainly by accident,
though they can be aggressive too.
Spot and Sonia have been living here in the lake for over 35 years,
and the only ones who dare go close are the sea lions,
who like to sit on them.
But now, we've come out on the boat with keeper Mark Tye,
and a cunning plan to get some close-up shots.
Now, there's a lot of nervous tension in the air on Roar today,
because that over there that we just saw is a hippo
submerged in the water, and it's time to unleash Croc Cam
to try and get an amazing shot of the hippos.
-I'm here with head keeper, Mark. How are you feeling about this?
-Are you up for it?
-Yeah, it'll be fun!
Yes, it's Croc Cam, our latest invention is now finished.
Underneath the crocodile's head, there's a radio-controlled boat,
while on top is one of our little spy cameras.
So, we've got Croc Cam in the water.
There's a hippo just over there, and I'm going to head over and
hopefully get an amazing, exclusive Roar shot of a hippo close up.
OK, so Mark, can you see where the hippo's gone?
Well, there's bubbles to the left. You're probably just on top of her!
The hippos have completely disappeared. Out in the wild,
if they don't like the look of something, they just go underwater.
And they can hold their breath for over five minutes!
Now, we've got a crocodile here. Would a hippo be scared of a croc?
Would they ever come across each other in the wild?
Yes, they would come across each other.
And a crocodile would prey on a young hippo, particularly.
So they would be aware of them, but our two haven't ever seen one before!
I don't want to lose Croc Cam here!
I'm going really near that little corner!
-And there's one right there!
-There is one right, just underneath!
D'you think the hippos are a little nervous now, or waiting to pounce?
Well, they're obviously nervous which is why they've gone under.
Their concealment is to hide...
There's one right there! You're practically on top of it!
Have you ever had anything this close to a hippo before?
I think it just knocked it, I think I'm right on top of the hippo!
I think you are, yeah. No, they wouldn't have had anything
this close to them other than the sea lions.
You know, Croc Cam just took a little knock underneath
and now it's stopped working! Yeah, I've lost control...
of Croc Cam.
Croc Cam has stopped working because the hippo has given it a knock.
-We can see some bubbles coming up.
-Is that the...?
..very close to us. There's one going off there, look.
Yeah, you can see some... this is really nerve wracking!
These bubbles here are a giant hippo.
I mean, just how big are these guys?
Really big, you know, two-and-a-half to three tonnes.
They are a big pair of girls, these two.
So, it's lucky we're in a big boat,
and just when we thought it was a hippo no-show,
they've surfaced 10 metres away, heading off across the lake.
Croc Cam, however, is still dead in the water!
Oh well, back to the drawing board!
Back in South Africa, John, the park's head of animals,
is still looking for six cheetahs to bring back home.
The idea is to start a new breeding group.
How we break down that group is what we'll look at today.
We were looking at two males and four females,
but probably it's going to be better with three males and three females.
Here at the Endangered Species Centre,
all the cheetah have been either bred in captivity or were
rescued as injured or orphaned animals.
There are over 30 waiting to find new homes.
To help them pick the right ones, John is going round with
Christo from the centre, and wildlife vet Charles.
-All right, Chris, this is...?
Yeah, how old is she?
She was born in 2007.
Is she on her own in this camp?
She was with her sister, but she's already been relocated.
She looks a nice animal. She's in good condition, actually.
-Was she hand-raised, or...?
-She's been hand-raised, OK.
The cheetahs that come to the park will need to be calm around people,
so that they don't get freaked out by all the visitors there.
And the best way to find out what Meg's really like is
to go right inside the enclosure with her.
Erm, she's actually quite relaxed with us here, isn't she?
They don't get much calmer than this.
Meg is just the sort they're looking for!
Coming out here and seeing the set-up here and just seeing
what can really be done, I think it's a really exciting time.
Meg looks good, but there are lots more cheetahs to see.
Go on, go on, go on, go on, go on!
Some are too young...
some too old...
and some too wild!
She'll let you go up close to her, but only if it's just one of us.
If it's just you, I think she'll...
But he's now seen all the candidates!
Cheetah are amazing!
Just look at them. There's one down here, six feet away from us,
and absolutely calm as anything, but look at the animal.
They're beautiful, beautiful creatures. Absolutely amazing.
As the day draws to a close, John has a lot to think about.
And everyone is looking forward to the next step.
The kind of project that we really like to be involved with.
They're going to Longleat where they'll be looked after
as they're looked after here, and will contribute to
the bigger picture of cheetah conservation.
Later in the series, we'll be back in Africa,
to follow the action when the six cheetah set out on
the long journey to their new life at the park.
It's almost the end of the show, but before we leave you today,
we've found just enough time to help Deputy Head of Section Ryan,
clean up some monkey mess. We've prepared for the worst, Ryan!
Oh no, Ryan! Gloves, poo! How many monkeys have we got out here?
Er, we've got around about 110, 120 monkeys.
This is a lot of poo to clean up!
-Er, well luckily it's not poo, Rani...
It's, er, it's going to be cartering.
Wipers, the rubbers around the door seals, things like that.
Why do they love it so much?
They're intelligent, inquisitive,
they've got very dexterous hands...
They're naughty, they're mischievous!
They love to explore, it's fun riding around on the cars.
-They get a reaction...
-Got to ask, though, Ryan,
is it a bit of a rarity to find these pieces of car, car bits? No!
You can tell by my reaction! No, every single day,
we're coming in here and picking up maybe 40, 50 pieces of trim.
Imagine the lost property...!
It looks like we've got a lot of work to do,
and while me and Rani clean up the monkeys' mess,
see what's coming up on the next episode of Roar.
Is that a wheel?!
There's funny business afoot.
We find out why the meerkats go mad for painted toenails!
The Roar Ranger is in for a surprise
when he has to land a bird with a wingspan that's bigger than him!
It's Africa's biggest owl!
And we'll be trying to catch the master criminal who keeps
letting the animals out of the farmyard exhibit.
The prime suspect is Arthur!
He may be a pig, but he's looking a bit sheepish!
Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd
E-mail [email protected]
The team present a special report following the park's Head of Animals as he goes to South Africa to look for six cheetahs who might need a new home.
Meanwhile, the kids are out to catch the keeper napping when they want answers about the meerkats.