Wildlife Programmes

So I’m watching this programme, this is the scenario:

Alpha male lion has been beaten in a scrap and his place taken by the winner.

This bugger promptly sets about killing the cubs (3 of) sired by the loser, all the time this is being filmed.:frowning:

Why the fuck didn’t the film crew do something to prevent this?

Surely they must carry tranquiliser guns and evn if they don’t there must be something they can do.

That’s just what lions do. The males that take over kill the cubs, because that brings the lionesses into heat so the new males can mate and produce their own cubs and not have to raise the ones of the previous males. It’s not a moral decision–it’s survival. Eventually, the males who took over will grow old and they’ll be replaced by the next generation. But in the meantime, they’re getting as many of their own offspring into the world as possible.

It wouldn’t make sense to intervene–it’s going to happen eventually. Nature simply takes its course, and it’s not a Disney movie. Hard to watch, I know, but there’s nothing easy about real life for any critter.

Well if the 2nd lion had been tranquilised then the cubs could have been taken and placed into a zoo, at least they’d be alive

Tranquilizers take time to work. More time than it takes a lion to kill the cubs. They’re lucky they were even there to film it. Such things generally don’t take place with human witnesses. I also don’t see the sense in risking human life to save cubs from what is simply part of life for lions. There is also a risk to the animals every time you intervene.

If you feel very strongly about this, go to your local park in the spring and watch what the ducks do to each other, then figure out if you can stop it from happening. Male ducks that don’t have a mate often try to force copulate with the females, and it can get very brutal. The females try to fly away or resist, and some of them are killed. It’s distressing to see, for sure, when you understand what’s happening (people often assume the ducks are ‘playing’ and don’t understand). But again, that’s nature.

Alternatively, stick to watching Disney movies where all the endings are happy. My former career was in animal behavior watching animals in the wild, and I do understand that it can be distressing to see the realities. I’ve seen footage of lion cubs being killed, so I know it’s hard to watch. But there simply isn’t anything you can do to change it on a practical level, and again, intervening can create more harm than good.

Well I guess you’re right. I’ve seen the ducks in spring and honestly thought they were just messing about, didn’t realise it was serious stuff and duck rape :smiley:

Nature red in tooth and claw…

Seriously, if I happen upon a wildlife programme and see something cute and furry and something with teeth and claws, I just **know **what’s going to happen next, and I change the channel. I know it’s kill to eat to live, but I don’t necessarily want to watch it for my idle television entertainment.

It’s a tough old world out there, whether it’s on the city streets or the savannah.

Yeah, I’ve never looked at mallards the same way again once I learned about it. Whoever coined the term “mild mannered mallard” must have been watching them well after the breeding season ended! :slight_smile:

The above was in response to Chowder…another post snuck in between us!

I’m not sure that life in captivity is better than death. My husband and I had a discussion about this just yesterday when we were watching a wildlife show about vultures, and they showed a zebra that died of thirst and would soon become vulture lunch. My husband (who knows me well and often has to “protect” me from scenes of animal distress*), got ready to change the channel, but I told him not to, because if the zebra hadn’t died, the vultures wouldn’t have food and would therefore die. I’m just as fond of vultures as of zebras, you see.

The earth had everything under fairly good control before we “grew up” and started messing with things, so I think the film crew was right not to interfere, and I’m sure they struggled with that decision as well.
*He’s still paying the price for making me see Turner and Hooch back when we were dating.

My question is where did you find an honest to god nature documentary these days? I miss those things! Everytime I turn on the Discovery Channel it’s some dingleberry talking about heavy machinery, or ghost stories, or Mythbusters.

On further reflection I see that if the film crew had intervened and “saved” the cubs they would in effect have been disobeying The Prime Directive.

To Cisco You really have to come to the UK for good wildlife docs.

Was it by any chance Big Cat Diary? That’s on over here too, and the presenters have spoken about how difficult it is not to intervene at times, but that is their rule - let nature take its course.

I got Discovery Europe when I lived in…um, Europe, and it’s pretty much the same as Discovery US but with British narration. Somehow I doubt chowder was watching nature documentaries on it, unless it was that episode of Mythbusters where Jamie and Adam go to South Africa to see if an elephant will be scared of a mouse.

Try Animal Planet or PBS.

Check out The Planet Earth that just started on Sunday nights. Awesome footage.

(I think this is a reshowing of the original series.)

It was indeed BCD.

I taped it some time ago and only just got round to viewing it