Wildlife series. In Kenya, Richard Hammond updates on Moja the lion cub and the baby elephants. In Minnesota, North America, Julia Bradbury has more news of the black bear cubs.
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May is always a critical time for wild young animals in 2012 and this
is no exception. We have been following the lives of the
vulnerable young animals and bringing you their individual
stories as they happen, here on Welcome to Kenya where we have been
witnessing things here. It's been a rollercoaster, but whatever happens
next, we'll keep you up-to-date with the latest news, not just from
here, but from around the globe. Reports are flooding in 24/7. Our
camera teams and experts are following the action as evens
unfold. Tonight, gremlin's family of
macaques go to war over a fig tree with tragic consequences.
We discover who noch is and what it means for Moja and his mum Nyota.
Mickey and Luca face the harsh realities of life on the open ice.
Right here and around-the-clock on our website, you can follow all the
latest twists and turns in our animals' lives as nature rights the
If that's not enough for you, here in the north Woods of Minnesota,
it's springtime. Our black bare mothers have emerged from their
dens with their little black bear cubs. Outside the dens, it's a
whole new world with so much to learn. It's been a dramatic few
days here in Ely. On Thursday, forest fires swept across the
entire area. We'll give you a full update and the impact on our bears.
As mating time closes in, we are scanning the woods for the male
bears who're on the prowl. They are here for one reason and you don't
want to get in the way. That could be a problem for the
yearlings, Aster and Aspen, if they're still with their mother,
June. So all of that to come from
Minnesota and more. It's a little chilly here today, temperatures are
going a little crazy. Let's go 8,000 miles south-east of here to
Africa where Richard and the team are waiting in warmer climes.
We are here and ready and we are certainly warm and also dry. Rainy
season it might be but once again, it's not raining. Hello, or as they
say here in Kenya, Jambo which is the best greeting possible because
it doesn't sound like you are not happy to see anybody when you say
it. We are here to follow the fortunes of lion cub Moja and his
single mum Nyota. Last time we saw them, they hadn't eaten for a few
days and they were both looking Over the last few days, camerawoman
Sophie Darlington's had her work cut out trying to follow Nyota and
Moja. We found her up on the ridge and it
was incredibly hard to find her because the grass is, as you can
see, really long. I've read that it grows an inch every 4 hours which
is sort of... You can pretty much see it growing?! Yes for her that
makes it tricky because she can't see the prey. This grass is a
problem because we can't see her either. Every day, something
happens to make it a little bit harder? Yes. Today she spent four-
and-a-half hours up a tree because she couldn't see anything to eat.
She's going from warthog mound to warthog mound just in case
somebody's in. When she finds one where somebody is in, she'll wait
two or three hours and when they come out, she'll have a go.
And have a go she did. She kills an adult warthog. Quickly replenishing
her energy. She takes the rest of the meal to her cub.
Once again, Moja has a feed just in time.
They really are just scraping through at the moment, living life
on the edge. We are running out of warthogs by the day right now on
Moja's side he has his mum who is an amazing hunter. As it turns out,
he may have some astonishing genes on his father's side as well
because Jackson, you now believe you know who Moja's father is. So
who is he and what proof have you got? Well, I've met mow that before
when he mated with this male. This male is a male I've known for a
long time, as well as Moja and Nyota. They were mating about nine
months ago, so that's when I took this photo. So the maths works
because Moja's six months, they carry the baby for three months so
that would be nine months socould be. So who is he someWell, He is
part of the collision of the most very very strong and well-known
genes in the Mara. This is Notch' gang, the father Notch and the sons,
one of them is Moja's father. have a coalition of males this big
is unusual and these four are all Notch's sons, one of these four is
Moja's father which means Notch is his grandfather? Exactly. That's
pretty exciting because Notch is pretty special? He is a very, very
special male. Notch is the King of the Masai Mara. That is why we are
excited. I have goose bumps. I've heard him described as the finest
lion ever to walk here. That's pretty good news for mow that what.
We are as sure as you can be that Notch is Moja's grandfather and
that's exciting because his story is incredible. This is the legend
of how he rose to power -- good News for Moja. A few years ago,
Notch had only one pride. He defended his family against young
pretenders who came to kill his cubs and claim his territory.
But one day, the challenge was too strong and he had to flee. But he
didn't leave alone. His young sons left with him.
And so began Notch's wilderness years.
He protected his remaining four boys. He waited until they were
strong. Then... He declared war.
Pride after pride fell before Notch's invincible lion army. Today,
Notch controls a vast territory, like a Mafia member, he wants
nothing less than total domination. Could he be about to take over yet
another pride? Well, come on, I mean what a
magnificent, awesome lion for Moja to have as a grandfather. He's a
survivor too. We reckon he's 12, maybe older. Male lions tend to
lead short, violent, brutal lives, so he really is a survivor
extraordinaire. We caught up with him. Here are the latest pictures
of him bruised and battered, but this is not a lion who walks away
from a fight ever. What does this mean for Moja? It's good news. This
is the time when nature weeds out the weaker lions. With Moja
carrying the genes of some of the finest lions, if any cub stands the
chance of making it through, it's got to be him. Julia, life for you
and the bears in the woods has been rocked by a big story I know - fire.
Absolutely. It certainly has. Welcome to the state of Minnesota.
This is an area surrounded by forests and lakes, it's 20 million
acres of beautiful, beautiful wilderness. Spring is here, but the
weather has just gone absolutely bonkers. Yesterday, it was about 80
degrees, more than that, it was 26 degrees, T-shirts and flip-flops
weather. You can see how much colder it is today, it's gone down
to the 40s, about eight or nine degrees. What's happened here is
the ground has become very, very dry and, on Thursday, a forest fire
erupted right on our doorstep. So far in the state of Minnesota,
there've almost been 80 fires. This one was right here less than ten
mile ace way. When we came off air, I went straight to the source of
the fire to find out what was going on. One resident described it as
the worst fire in living memory and This is Highway one. Ely is over
that way in the west and the sky luen is full of smoke. The skies
are full of helicopter and aeroplanes, a lot of police
activity, the locals are trying to see what is going on. -- skyline is
full of smoke. I don't know if it's under control.
Can't believe it. Here is a fire at the edge of town. The bad Swindon
carrying it into town. It's across the highway here. -- the bad wind
is carrying it into town. Not seen anything like this before. I don't
know if there's bears over here. The cubs climb trees and
firefighters have told me of hearing of shrieks as the fire
burns on. The fire spread rapidly.
Firefighters told us as much as 20 acres were consumed by flames in
just two minutes. The emergency services had to act
fast. They call this the land of 10,000 lakes and thank goodness.
Each water plain and helicopter scoops up to 2,000 gallons of water
to dump on the spreading furnace with precision.
Whoa. And then some bad news for one of our bears.
There is a fire just south of Juliet's territory, with the south
wind it's going to be blowing it into her territory. She does have
three cubs. I don't know what's going to happen there.
operation is ongoing, but once the flames have been brought under
control, this was the San that greeted us.
A charred, desolate landscape. -- was the scene that greeted us. Not
much will have survived. Well, obviously our first concern
was for the residents of Ely and it was a very, very serious situation.
Here is lovely Mia. This is our evacuation warning that was posted
under our doors at the hotel. They told us to pack and leave at a
moment's notice. And here are the headlines we woke up to this
morning, four frantic hours as the fire races towards Ely. I'm happy
to say, nobody was hurt, no humans have been hurt, no homes were lost,
but of course, we are very concerned about the black bears
here in the north Woods of Minnesota, as is Dr Lynn Rogers as
he said in the film. They way they escape danger is to escape up trees
and the worst thing you can do in a fire of course is go up a tree. Max
shot this footage on the day of the fire. This is lovely Jewel, the
first-time mum with her two cubs, Herbie and Fern. I've been here for
almost a month and I haven't seen this yet, I haven't seen a mum
claim the trees with her young. Is Jewel reacting to the fire? Look at
her sniffing? A bear's sense of smell is thought to be a hundred
times better than ours, they can smell food up to two miles away. Is
this why she took her cubs up a tree? Whatever the reason, it was
obviously the wrng place for her to be had the fire swept through. --
wrong place. She was absolutely fine. But what about Juliet and her
three cubs, Sam, Sybil and Sophie? We chased after them yesterday,
were frantically worried. We didn't get any signal from the GPS but did
eventually track them down and here they are safe and sound. Sam, Sybil
and Sophie and mum found in a nice bogy area trying to stay cool, more
worried by the mosquitoes and ticks than the fire there. We all know,
the crew and team, we all know about the ticks. One of the
cameramen manageded to remove 50 from his trousers the other day -
that was very lovely. That's what's been happening in Ely. Now the fire
is pretty much under control, the fire department say 90% under
control. But they are not taking any chances, they are combing
through every ember to make absolutely certain that a rogue
spark cannot escape. So very dramatic. We've lost
thousands of trees here and actually trees lie at the heart of
another war on the other side of the world in Sri Lanka, gremlin and
the monkeys are getting into We have been following the life of
Gremlin, a tiny female macaque growing up among the ruins of an
ancient city in Sri Lanka. At 11 weeks old, she is slowly learning
the rules of her strictly hierarchical society. In this
family, she is more or less the lowest of the low, so perhaps the
most crucial lesson she has learned so far is how to properly on are
the king of the temple troop, Hector, by chattering her teeth.
But bigger lessons lie in store, and little Gremlin tends to learn
things the hard way. Cameraman Gavin has spent May following every
milestone in run in's life. It is a hot day in the temple ruins.
Temperatures at this time of year reach well into the 30s. Gremlin
starts the day with a cuddle and a feed from mum. Whereas King hector
is starting the day with a grooming session from some of his loyal suss
-- subjects. This hot weather is perfect for ripening figs, and
there is a tree on the edge of their territory which is bursting
with them. The time has finally come for the figs to be harvested.
Unfortunately, the tree marks the border of their territory with
their arch rivals, the Slumdog eggs. These unsavoury characters live
among the houses and rubbish dumps of the town. They are led by the
fierce and uncompromising macaque. His ire was damaged in a run-in
with King Hector, and there are old scores to settle. They have been
keeping watch on the tree, too, biding their time. The hungry and
excited temple troop make their move. Gremlin is happily swinging
towards the tree with her family. Putting into practice all of her
best moves. Right now, life is good in Gremlin's innocent little world,
but around here, things can change in the blink of an eye. The Slumdog
Sorel so making their way towards the tree, their scouts moving ahead
of the main raiding party. Naive little Gremlin, always curious and
keen to explore, is highly in the tree. 30 feet below her, the rival
scouts have spotted each other. Warning calls go out. Battle lines
are being rapidly drawn. Hector and bad I are old campaigners, Tokely
aware that lives are at stake. Gremlin must leave with the females.
If the other troop catch her, they will show no mercy. Footsoldiers
from both sides charge a teacher there. They are testing to see if
one will back down. -- they charge each other. But there is too much
at stake. There is only one way to There is a mother with a baby right
The battle is over. For some, it was their last. A sudden storm
tears through the forest. Already frightened, the temple troop panic
and flee into the deep forest, in complete disarray. Gremlin is
nowhere to be seen. If she is lost, the noise of the storm will cover
any contact call that she would use to find her mother or her trooper.
-- her troupe. And as darkness falls, Gavin searches for her.
is unfortunate that the noise of the storm stopped them regrouping
after the battle. I still have not found Kremlin. -- Gremlin. Let's
The next day, the troupe has regrouped. The fig tree is theirs.
And the other troops have been vanquished. The family are relaxing,
licking their wounds and re- establishing their bonds. His old
female and heard little baby are safe. -- her baby. King hector is
languishing in his victory, but what about Kremlin? Am concerned
that I cannot see Gremlin. Lots of the key players are here. There is
little Richard, Hector, but I have not seen Gremlin yet. Their Shias.
Right on the edge of the group. -- there she is. She has made it home
to her family in one piece. Gremlin has had a lucky escape, but she is
no longer the naive little monkey she once was. She has had to grow
up fast. Life for baby animals like her can often be short and brutal,
but if she can learn her lessons well, then she might just be one of
the lucky ones. Another big fright for little
Gremlin, and for us. She keeps getting into these scrapes and then
getting out just at the last moment. The thing is, at these times of
intense competition for resources, we see these brutal clashes.
Sometimes when a family as new mouths to feed, they have to risk
everything if it means a guaranteed meal. Welcome back. You are live
with me in Kenya. We are going to talk about elephants now. Out there,
we have one that was having a scratch or trying to push down a
tree a moment ago. That is going to be relevant in a few moments. The
last time we met the newborn calf, Mayer, born into a herd that we
know was hit hard by poachers. They lost all of their elders, and all
of their wisdom and knowledge. Whilst here, we have seen them lose
Maya's mother is only nine years old. She is an exceptionally young
first-time mum, and Maya was born unusually small. When the crew came
across her, Maya was only five or six hours old. Her mother took a
while to find her feet as a mother. First, she did not even know to let
Maya circle, and she left her baby exposed to the sun. In the heat of
the day, Maya was at risk of heat exhaustion, but to the crew's
relief, her mother led her to a wallow and called her down. This
was Maya's first experience of water. It may well have saved her
life. Meeting the rest of the herd for the first time is a big deal,
especially for the other young females. 25-year-old Annie, one of
the oldest in the family, wanted Maya to know their place. Maya's
eyesight is poor, and she will follow other elephants, thinking
they are her mother. Annie gives her a gentle nudge, as if to say,
Elephants are born weak and vulnerable, and Maya had to grow up
fast. An older car seemed to be bullying her, forever pulling her
tail. -- calf. But as her strength and confidence grew, Maya started
to play on her own terms and her personality began to shine through.
At this stage, Maya is full of fun, enjoying exploring the world in her
own unique way. Our cameraman, Warren, has been fascinated by this
Karthik. One of the things that strikes me as just how small and
elephant starts off in its life and how big it grows to. I have is one
shot of his elephant calf between all of these legs. Having lost one
calf, the family seemed determined to keep Maya safe from harm.
think that is amazing, that the little calf lives among these
mobile tree-trunks, and how gentle the adults are with their babies.
Warren has watched Maya and her mother over their first 10 days, as
they have bonded and survived against the odds. She is clearly
getting more experienced and more confident with looking after this
little baby, and it is lovely to see just how wonderful she is doing
as a first-time mother. Maya has got through her most vulnerable
time. But she still faces big challenges. The herd will have to
cross the river soon to feed on the other side. And without the
guidance of any Elders, mistakes could be made.
I know! We are all hoping for the best. Warren will be with Maya
pretty much constantly and we will give you the latest in the next
show. You may have noticed that in all of the elephant herds and
families that we follow her around, all of the adults are female. There
is a good reason for that. That is because when male elephants reach
maturity, they are no longer welcome in the family. Not
surprising. Feisty is a nice way of putting it. Take this tree, for
example. That is my tent, where I sleep. The other night, a male
elephant came over here and just pushed the tree over, for no
conceivable reason. He might as well have put a traffic cone on his
head and danced down the High Street. But if you think that is
bad, at certain times of year, what social niceties they do observe go
clean-out of the window. Bull elephants are nomads, kicked out of
the herd when they become teenagers, between 10 and 15 years old. They
then spend most of the year roaming outside of the reserve. But in May,
they return to the sanctuary of Samburu to mate. First, they have
to work out who is boss. In a heightened state of sexual
aggression, they size each other up. This can last for up to four months.
In Samburu, it often occurs at the end of the rainy season, when more
females are ready to breed. Modified sweat glands on their
heads become inflamed and start to secrete a dark, oily and incredibly
smelly substance. This sends out a Males in must are unpredictable,
dominant, excitable and totally single-minded. And they have been
known to destroy everything in their path. Sometimes young males
-- sometimes they are killed by others. When they have court today
female and are accepted, they get their reward. After nearly 22
months, the longest pregnancy of any mammal, the calves are born.
Because the males fight for the females, only the strongest get to
mate. That is how it works. But there is a twist, because it is
precisely those strong, big males, with the biggest tasks, that are
killed for their ivory by poachers. If poaching continues to escalate
at the current rate, the future of the elephant is in doubt. That is
just a fact. Anyway, this is a patch showed tonight and here is
what is coming up. -- a packed show. Still to come:
Polar bear cubs face the harsh realities of life on the open ice.
Swift and the rest of her family of Welcome back to Ely. The fires that
have been raging here for the past few days have really pointed out
another danger for the Black Bears. I want to know if June and her
yearlings, Aster and Aspen are still together, or whether the
yearlings were facing the fires on their own. I went back into the
woods with Dr Lynn Rogers yesterday and something else was pointed out
to me, something extraordinary, June is really making us work today.
We have been going for about 40 minutes. Hello, little Aster.
honestly did not think we would track the Bears today. They are
still together. Two things I want to do. I want to take their heart
rate, if I can, and I want to see if you've got any metal in you.
June. It shows a red light. So that is a bullet? Yes, probably from a
shotgun. Sometimes people, if they see a bear going through their yard,
they are filled with fear. They have read too many wild stories
about theirs. So they feel like they have got to shoot it. That is
my goal in life, to have people understand them better, so they do
not feel like they have to shoot every bear that they see. She is a
really good mother. She is 11 years old. We have been watching her
since she was four. She is your favourite? Yes, she really years.
She has given us so much and I trust her more than any of the
others. What you think makes her a special? The trust, the working
relationship she has. She understands me, I understand her.
How do you feel when you go over her with a metal detector and find
bits of bullet? I just want people to learn the truth about them. And
through this bear and a few others, we have learned the language, we
can convey it to people. When people meet them, instead of
misunderstanding them, they will know what they are saying. I am
just looking for chances to show the world that. Thank you. Thank
you. This could be the last time we see them together. We keep saying
June is absolutely riddled with these pellets from a gun. Really,
it's brought it home for us all here in the north Woods of
Minnesota that yes the black bears are facing all the dangers, the
predators, the fires, but the biggest threats of all to the black
bears still is the humans. You heard Dr Lynn there talking about
June. He thinks she is an exceptional bear, a special bear,
some of the bears do have different personalities. June seems to be a
very caring and very tolerant bear. Is that one of the reasons why she
can't maybe do family break-up very well? Lily, her daughter, doesn't
seem to have that problem. This is lily with her female cub Faith
about three weeks ago, but once she decided to break up, that was it.
On 7th May, she ousted Faith and they haven't been together since.
Lily is now on her own and they think with a male, in the company
of a male. She's behaving slightly differently, she's moving a lot
more than normal and not foraging and sniffing almost everywhere she
goes, so real indicators that perhaps she is with a male.
Incredibly hard to film big males, very, very rare indeed. In his
lifetime here in the woods, 45 years plus, Lynn Rogers has only
seen a handful of males, so we thought our best chance of getting
a male on camera would be to set up camera traps. That's what we got
Max to do. He set them up over the past couple of nights. That is what
we captured. The night before last this was. There is a racoon popping
in to say hello. Did we get a male? Yes, we did. There he is. That is a
male. He's an adolescent, not a big boy, possibly about three or four
years old, old enough to mate but to do so, he'd have to be very
cheeky because he's definitely not big enough to hold ground against
the really big males in these woods. Speaking of the big males, we've
got something very special to show you now, something very rare. This
is two big males fighting. Watch That is incredible footage. Look at
the size of the males. This is the skull of a male and this is the
skull of a female. Look at the sagittal crest there where the jaw
muscles cling on. Phenomenal difference. They really are very,
very special creatures. That is what Asper and Aspen are facing.
Now, we know that millions of you are following the flight of our
meerkat family and in particular you're very keen to know what's
happened to Ernesto. He was bitten by a venomous snake the last time
you saw him. So what's gone on? The family are underground in a burrow
spending the night in a rival meerkats' burrow. In the morning
when they all came up, Ernesto was in a terrible state with a clear
wound to the head where they think a cape cobra had bitten him. He
looked at death's door. The family couldn't stay with him with four
little pups to feed. They had to get out there foraging. Ernesto
tried to keep up, bless him, but eventually fell behind and found an
empty burrow where he could curl up quietly. We all know what we
thought was going to happen then. We thought he died. Two days later
when the family returned to their own burrow what they thought was an
intruder turned out to be Ernesto still alive and, amazingly, he'd
somehow dragged himself home. The very latest news oner knows toe
from Toby and the team in South Africa is that Ernesto continues to
recover slowly and is looking better -- news on Ernesto.
What else is happening with the Whisker family in South Africa?
Swift is a little meerkat with a big family living in the Southern
Kalahari. This May has turned out to be a tough one for the Whiskers
family. The rains failed and food supplies are running lower and
lower. The dominant female is responsible for making sure Swift
and the other pups get enough to eat. Recently, she's been forced to
lead them deep into enemy territory. Cameraman Toby Strong has been
following all their ups and downs. The Joe of their recent return home
is short-lived. Whilst they were away, stealing food from someone
else's la Da, the same was happening to them -- else's larder.
Nicking each other's food is in the DNA of these creatures, but they
hate it when it happens to them. The Whiskers have caught the swent
of a rival group and they are furious -- scent. One of the
families spots something. It could be their thieving neighbours
returning for more. Straight towards the sand dunes to the north.
I'm presuming it's another big group. Tails up and backs arched,
this war dance is a visual show of strength to any rivals. The bigger
the show, the better the chance of scaring off their rivals.
This is a turning point for Swift. She's only seven weeks old. But if
she's going to survive as a meerkat, she has to know how to defend the
family's territory. These guys are all over the police.
-- place. Swift and her sister right at the forefront. They know
know fear. It's worked. The show of strength sent the opposition
packing and dp swift has earned her stripes. They've now come across a
bolt hole. A lot of sniffing, a lot of marking. Hyper aware, everyone
keeping an eye. Tails up. Super, super... Emily doesn't like what
she smells one little bit. They're all off. I've never seen them run
this far, this fast. There is a very real danger there whatever it
was. After intense danger like that, you
can see everyone's playing, reaffirming contact touch. There is
a huge release of energy. It's been a landmark day for Swift. She's
learned how to defend her territory and, just as importantly, she's
learned when to flee. And for a meerkat growing up in
this tough little corner of Africa, that's the difference between life-
An eventful day for Swift and family and the meerkat team will
bring you a final update in the next show.
Last time we heard how Moja might be directly descended from
legendary lion Notch. Because Moja and his mum live as outcasts, his
father and grandfather never just drop by. The situation is different
There are eight cubs in this large extended family. They enjoy lots of
rough-and-tumble as they ambush and stalk one another. Building up core
muscle strength and honing their hunting skills.
The mating ritual of a Jackson's widow bird is fascinating.
But the highlight of the day is when their three dads pay them a
visit. The males control two prides and divide their time between them.
Everyone is happy to see them and Males play an active role in
bringing up their own cubs. They want to make sure their offspring
survive. These battle-scarred bruisers look
like they have the weight of the world on their shoulders. But it's
hard to get a moment's peace with It's what happens next that really
cements the difference between these cubs and Moja. The whole
pride begins to roar. It's a phenomenal sound. The whole family
are saying, we are back together and we are strong. It's for their
neighbours' benefit as much as their own.
The cubs try to join in. But it's more of a miaow than a
Ten miles away, Moja and Nyota don't make a sound.
Roaring is all about territory and they are always trespassing.
They don't want anyone to know where they are.
They live their lives in silence. The thing is, not only are Moja and
Nyota forced to live in silence, they are forced to hunt in the day.
The fact that she's so successful is a very strong testament indeed
to Nyota's skill because, in the savannah, it's when the sun goes
down that the lions come into their own.
The lions are desuened to hunt at night.
-- designed to hunt at night. The white fur under their eyes acts
like a mirror reflecting all available light up into their eyes.
They have more light sensitive reSeptemberors -- recentors and a
special filter allows more light in but less light out.
-- receptos. At night, lions are hidden from their quarrifplt --
their quarry. Grazers can see for miles in the day, but in low light,
lions can creep up unseen. They are sprinters with awesome
acceleration, but they have to be close to catch such speedy prey.
They approach with incredible The night truly belongs to the lion.
We here lions out there roaring from here in our camp pretty much
every night. Jackson decided it was time for me to get closer to the
action and spend a night out there in the middle of a pride's
I'll be honest, I've been really looking forward to this because I
like a camping trip, I've packed my bag, got everything with me. What
kind of camping will it be? Drastic. Hopefully not too bad rustic. Just
a bit out of your comfort zone. We are going to be out in lion
Jackson, what is to stop them eating, say, me? To be honest, you
don't taste good. That's good. That's OK, I don't mind that.
the Masai Mara, they have developed a fear of humans. But at night,
they become bold, curious. They tend to become a completely
As the Lions get ready for a busy night, Jackson roasts mutton over
the fire. The smell of the meek will attract lions, hyenas,
leopards, every other predator will be crawling. -- the smell of the
meat. Just guess how many animals are looking at us right now. To be
honest, I did not want to guess, but the thermal camera confirmed my
unnerving sense of being watched. That's another one. Another one.
And that is close. Fantastic. I so enjoy that sound. A roaring lion
can be heard at least five miles away. At night, it is all about
letting other Lions know that Are they flanking us? We are
surrounded. Yes, that is exactly what I didn't want to hear you say,
OK? The Masai people have their own translation of what it means.
did you come here? This is my territory. This is my territory.
I'm rule, I rule, I rule. That is what they are talking about right
now. That is a hyena. OK. The first one is asking us any questions.
They are asking us, what have you left behind? We are not likely to
see Moja's mum out here at night. No, her main priority at the moment
is her son, Moja. So she is hunting during the day, while the other
predators, the Lions, the hyenas, they are all nocturnal, as you can
see. And then she goes back and sleeps during the night. The
It was magical, thrilling, completely unforgettable. It is
interesting how much we are learning about lions by watching
what Moja and Nyota do not do. They do not raw, they do not hunt at
night, do not interact with other lions. None of that means they will
not make it. They are sleeping, staying safe and the film crews
will catch up with them tomorrow for the final instalment in our
next show. Now, from Africa to the Arctic. That is where Gordon
Buchanan spent the spring following newborn bear cubs. This is the
Up in the Arctic, Micky and Luca have been out of the day and for
five days. -- out of the Den. Like most toddlers, they are enjoying
exploring the new world. But for their mum, Lyra, it is decision
time. Should she leave the safety of the den and risk the lives of
her cubs, or stay and staff? -- Look! I think it is getting closer
to the stage when they are going to disappear. This is what happens. It
starts off very, very slowly, a little bit of exercise. And then
suddenly, the mother will decide the cubs are ready to walk, and she
At the moment, Micky and Luca are unaware of the perils that lie
ahead. With every young animal, every little bit of play is an
important lesson. Over the next year, these cubs are going to have
to walk hundreds of miles, over snow and ice. Wow! Just sliding
down the slope. This rough and tumble will help to strengthen
their muscles for the long trek to the hunting grounds. Lyra must find
food if she is to continue to provide them with milk. Like all
polar bears, she hunts out on the sea ice. But this year, very little
has formed. This will make hunting very difficult. You forget,
watching them playing on the slope, that they have hard times ahead of
them. They have incredibly hard times ahead of them. She is not
going to want them to go too far. There is a lone male on the ice
below. He is hunting seals, but if he catches their scent, Micky and
Luca are in big trouble. He will attack them. He can smell a seal
under the ice. But the ice is too thick to break through. Micky and
Blucher would make a much easier meal. -- Micky and Luca. Especially
now that their mum is finally ready to start her journey. I think I
know what is going through her mind. One, I have to look after my cubs.
Two, I am hungry. Adults polar bears can easily cover 50 miles
each day. At three months old, Micky and Luca are going to have to
work hard. It is epic to see these tiny animals just setting out on
This is a journey that will last the rest of their lives.
Well, there is no doubt that little Micky and Luca face a very
uncertain future. Lyra, their mum, has to eat. She has lost almost
half her body weight during the Arctic winter. An average polar
bear needs to eat about 50 seals each year in order to survive. It
is the largest land carnivore on the planet. Let's put that into
some perspective. A large male polar bear in his prime will
weigh... 270 kilos is what a large bear here will way, so a big polar
bear is three times that size. Absolutely enormous. While Gordon
has been filming, they have also been darting and sedating the
mother, so they can fit her with a radio collar. Those Collor's work
in exactly the same way as the Black Bear collars. You can see
that Micky and Luca are attached to mum, so that they do not wander off.
There are more black bears in Minnesota than polar bears left in
the world, so that is vital data. This also gave Gordon a chance to
get close to a polar bear. Can I come in closer? Yes. Hello.
These cards are in perfect health, incredibly healthy. I have just
been told that this is not her first litter. And that is a great
thing for the cubs. If she has raised cubs before, their chance of
How does it sound if I follow you around? That would be nice,
wouldn't it? We could become good friends until you get big enough to
eat me! They have a very, very long road
ahead of them, those little polar bear cubs. But thanks to the radio
collars, Gordon will be able to follow them almost every step of
the way through this very tough Arctic summer. If you want to
continue to keep up with their story, keep watching the BBC,
because Gordon's series will be coming on towards the end of the
year. Watch out for that, Gordon and the polar bears. The polar
bears are not the only animals that will be spending the summer in the
Arctic. We have been following migrating gray whales from here as
well, heading up the Pacific coast to Arctic waters where they will be
feeding. They are very rich feeding grounds for gray whales. Along the
way, they have been doing everything they can to avoid pods
of killer whales that attack them and take the cards. -- take their
calves. Hopefully, on our last show on Thursday, we can bring you
footage of the gray whales in their First feeding ground, just off
Vancouver Island. We have a team setting off to get those pictures.
Hopefully that will be in our final show on Thursday. Also in our final
show - I cannot believe the series is nearly over - we will be finding
out if Aster and Aspen have finally broken up. Will they, won't they?
They are still together at the moment, that is the news Justin.
And little Sybil, she has been going from strength to strength.
Will she make it through the summer? How cute is that? We hope
she will do. And the male bears, roaming, prowling, moving in on the
ladies. We will see if we can get one on camera. We are doing our
very best on Planet Earth alive. We are very near the end of this
show and the series. And there are still so many questions left
unanswered. With cubs astern Aspen still
hanging around their mum, will it be a violent break-up for June's
family. What about baby Gremlin? After the fight between her troupe
and a rival gang, she had a lucky escape, but she remains vulnerable.
And will lion cub Moja and his remarkable mum beat the odds and
survive their life on the run? Remember, you can keep up to date
with all of our stories and share the adventure on our website, one
Twitter and on Facebook. And that is it for tonight. But
remember, as always, the stories go on. Moja and Nyota are out there
Richard Hammond and Julia Bradbury are reaching the end of the epic three week global wildlife event. They are following a cast of wild animal characters, and present the latest updates on them as they try to survive the toughest month of the year.
In Kenya, Richard updates on Moja the lion cub and the baby elephants. Over in Minnesota, North America, Julia has more news of the black bear cubs. Plus reports on the meerkats in South Africa and the monkeys in Sri Lanka.