Archives for April, 2010

Going Tribal in Texas

The two Kenyan guys are im the midst of an enlightening – and entertaining – journey through the U.S. Last week, the Maasai tribal warriors turned learned about ATMs, refrigerators, and hot dogs in New York City. This week, they’re traveling to Texas to check out the cowboy life. Just what will they encounter in their travels to the Lone…

Asian Elephant Shower

Asian elephants are very fond of water ­– they can even suck it into their trunks and wash down their bodies. But have you ever wanted to hose down an elephant?   Recently I visited the Smithsonian National Zoological Park in Washington, D.C. to observe the bathing of their Asian elephants. I met with zookeepers…

Redwood Summer

In 1990, environmental activists organized what may be the largest act of civil disobedience for wilderness protection ever when authorities in northern California planned to chop down redwoods in an old-growth forest. The months-long protest became known as “Redwood Summer,” and during it, activists physically blocked the paths of bulldozers and chained themselves to the trees to…

Iceland Volcano Eruption

Naked Science: Iceland Volcano Eruption premieres Thursday April 29th at 8P et/pt. By Sigtryggur Baldursson, Sound Recordist for Iceland Volcano Eruption I am standing at the bottom of the myrdalsjökull glacier and looking up at the rising steam in the distance. Huge clouds of steam shoot up into the air when molten lava pours onto…

Archaeoastronomy

By Known Universe Production Team Archaeoastronomy is one of those sciences in which there are few true practitioners. They’re about as numerous as paleobotonists and ecophysiologists. Archaeoastronomy is just not one of those sciences people gravitate toward. Have you ever heard a kid, a normal kid, say they want to be an archaeoastronomer when they…

Filming Gorilla Murders

By Naomi Schwarz, production crew I crowd into the tiny bit of shade on a curb next to Goma’s airport building, already mostly filled with a tripod bag, a camera case, my bag, the producer’s backpack, some empty water bottles, and Brent, the print photographer for the NG magazine story, and Mick, the producer. Just…

Rat-Tastic

Rats are an adaptable species, thriving in our shadows on almost every continent. Could the success of this rodent be the result of their brainpower? Rats have evolved with humans for thousands of years, and they’re perfectly happy with our co-existence. But rats don’t just live alongside humans – they share surprisingly similar characteristics. Many…

The Nevada Triangle

After millionaire adventurer and record-setting pilot Steve Fossett took off in a small plane from a Nevada airstrip in September 2007 and vanished, rescue teams searching a 17,000-square-mile swath of the Sierra Nevada mountains for him made a grisly discovery. They found wreckage of eight other small planes that had similarly disappeared over the years.…

Breakout: Through the Roof

In 2003, Timothy Vail and Timothy Morgan were inmates in Elmira Prison, one of New York state’s larger maximum-security facilities. But staying put away for life for murder wasn’t something they were prepared to do. They decided to get out. View inmate profiles of Vail and Morgan >> They’re planned method of escape? Chipping a hole…

Cannibal Octopus

Video Preview: An octupus changes colors before engulfing one of its own. Caught in the Act: Cannibal Octopus premieres Tuesday April 27 at 9P et/pt.

The New Audi R8

What is the new revolutionary road car that goes 60 miles-per-hour in 3.8 seconds, and rivals Porshe and Lamborghini? That’s right, the new Audi R8. Its factory is in Neckarsulm, Germany, where parts of the car are meticulously handbuilt. More than a week and 120 workers are necessary to produce one of these. Video: Creating…

A Zookeeper’s Life

My Life is a Zoo premieres on Nat Geo WILD, Monday April 26th at 10 PM ET/PT. Over 175 million people visit zoos and aquariums each year. To meet the demands of the exotic animal business, zookeepers must complete a series of behind-the-scenes tasks on a daily basis to keep their animals healthy and happy.…

Dogs and iPads

Eons ago, back when Steve Martin still had brown hair, he appeared on the “Tonight Show,” where he made the observation that some dogs actually seem to watch television. That led him to wonder: why don’t all dogs watch television? The explanation, he decided, was the lack of programming targeted at canines — “there’s maybe…

Fatal Insomnia

By Tria ThalmanProducer/Director Fatal Familial Insomnia One of the greatest challenges in producing this film was locating families that suffer from Fatal Familial Insomnia. It’s a disease that devastates families, passing from one generation to the next with frightening tenacity. For these families, it’s the elephant in the room – everyone knows it’s there but…

Grizzly Encounter

Expedition Wild: Grizzly Encounters premieres Monday April 26 at 9P et/pt. By Eric Bendick It was a bright and sunny winter morning at the Montana Grizzly Encounter, nestled high in the sparkling snow-covered mountains above the Gallatin Valley of Montana. The better part of the last three hours had been spent filming the beginning of…

"Stay AWAY From the Saw"

by Jose Jehuda Garcia My name is Jose and I’m one of the producers on “Cut it in Half: Fire Truck.” Like with any NatGeo show, producing Cut it in Half was an interesting, educational experience. And as we captured the images and researched the topic that comprises this program, I learned a lot of…

Earth From Above

Satellite technology allows us to have a better understanding of our planet. Scientists can follow seasons and climate changes around the globe. These tools help us even save lives by enabling us to predict the path of hurricanes, track bushfires and other dangerous weather patterns and disasters. Video: Satellite imagery confirms the effects of global…

Scientists generally view Bigfoot, the towering, hirsute recluse that reputedly roams the forests of northern Califoria and the Pacific Northwest, as nothing more than a mashup of hoaxes, hype and modern folklore. But in the unlikely event that paranormal searchers someday emerge from the woods with a specimen of the giant humanoid monster on a…

Hyena Vs Lioness

Deep in the Luiwa Plain, a hyena must challenge a lioness for her next meal — an injured wildebeest. But the lionness is hunting alone and where there is one hyena there is sure to be others. She is no match for a hungry group of hyenas. Clash of the Hyenas airs Friday April 23…

This place is like no other. Savage, bizarre, hellish and beautiful; the islands that changed the world. From erupting volcanoes, giant tortoises, and leaping lizards to rarely filmed sites and creatures, Galápagos take you inside this living laboratory of evolution. Galápagos airs April 22 at 8P et/pt. Watch a video preview below.

Rare African Shoebill Chick

On December 25th, 2009 – for the first time in North America and the fourth time worldwide – a rare African shoebill stork chick hatched in captivity. And now, just a few months old, this healthy hatchling is growing rapidly and shedding light on the behaviors of this threatened avian species. source: Homer Dennowitz Very…

To the west, and as far as the eye can see, tall grass billows in the wind. Two centuries ago, Lewis and Clark were the first European-Americans to discover this land. This is prairie. It once blanketed much of the heartland of North America, but today on the Great Plains, few reminders of this once-pristine…

Shark Superhighway premieres Wednesday April 21 at 9P et/pt. By Shark Superhighway Production Crew The mood was heavy on board the ship that night. The expedition to the Galapagos Islands to track hammerhead sharks had been going exceptionally well. The scientific team, led by renowned shark biologist Peter Klimley, was having great success locating schools…

Jellyfish Invasion

By Shin-ichi Uye, Ph.D. The giant jellyfish Nemopilema nomurai is one of the largest of all jellyfish species, attaining a bell diameter of ca. 2 m and a wet weight of ca. 200 kg.  This species is endemic in the East Asian Marginal Seas, residing in the Bohai, Yellow and East-China Seas and being expatriated…

Guide Dogs at Work and Play

Guide dogs are service animals that assist visually impaired individuals. These canines are professionally trained to improve the quality of life of his or her handler. Recently, I interviewed two people – Donna Grahmann of Magnolia, Texas and Patrick Leahy of Washington, D.C. – about their personal experiences with guide dogs. They offered honest insight…