Archives for September, 2010

Gray Wolf Pack

It’s possible that as many as two hundred thousand gray wolves once thrived across the United States. But human settlements expanded and the species was viewed as a threat to livestock, and wolves were gradually eliminated from most of their original territory. But in 1995, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife service began a bold movement…

Saving Animals from the Gulf

With oil actively gushing into the Gulf’s waters, wildlife expert Mireya Mayor, together with adventure underwater cameraman Andy Casagrande, join the extensive mission to save struggling creatures at the center of the crisis. View photos of the rescue operations going on in the gulf. Saved from the Spill premieres Tuesday October 5 at 9P et/pt…

On this day in 1919, 30-year-old Fritz von Opel, scion of a famous German auto making family, climbed into a custom-built glider specially equipped with 16 50-pound thrust rockets and took off from a field near Frankfurt. According to his 1971 New York Times obit, Opel’s 90 second, 1.5 mile ride, which achieved an altitude of 49…

Playful Forest Monkeys

Long-tailed macaques are an old world monkey species that spends most of the day eating, napping, traveling and socializing. They can balance from great heights with their long tails and even jump sixteen feet to reach another tree branch.  At nighttime, long-tailed macaques huddle against one another for warmth. And if pursued by a predator –…

Swimming in a Margarita

by Craig ZwolakAssociate Producer San Antonio, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Philadelphia… and St. Paul Island, AK. Most of the cities I’ve been to for World’s Toughest Fixes are easy to find on a map, but St. Paul Island, AK took some time — not to mention good eyesight. The journey to St. Paul Island started…

Aquarium Shark Swim


 Like many people, I’m pretty terrified of sharks. And even though more people die every year from falling out of bed than from a shark attack, just the thought of their razor-sharp teeth sends a wave of bone chilling fear through my body. But a few weeks ago, I faced my fear and swam…

On this day in 1914, Thomas Edison was granted a patent for the “phonograph-record”— which actually was not the first phonograph record, as you might mistakenly assume. (Don’t feel badly—we initially made the same error.) Given the degree of Edison worship in American history books, you might also incorrectly think that Edison was the first person to…

Proboscis Monkey Harem

Wild proboscis monkeys live in just one area: the lowland swamps and mangrove forests on the island of Borneo. They are at once hideous and beautiful, having unusually long, pendulous noses and oversized bellies. And this endangered monkey species lives in fascinating social systems called harems. The average size of a harem is nine individuals, but they…

On this date in 1969, a fiery object that would become known as the Murchison meteorite appeared in the sky over the town of the same name in Australia. According to the U.S. Geologic Survey’s database, the object split into three pieces, and then disappeared in a cloud of smoke. 30 seconds later, residents of the area felt…

Warthog Vs. Cheetah

In Africa, the warthog is a constant target for hungry predators, and for one warthog mother, “Half Tusk,” the stakes couldn’t be higher. She’s lost at least half of her litter to predators over the past four years. This year she is preparing to defend her brood from the prowess of lions, leopards and cheetahs…

Cash for the Cartels

Officer Tiziana Riccitelli-Snyder stands vigilant as she patrols the pedestrian walkway of the San Ysidro port of entry. If CBP officers and agents missed the cartel’s product going into the United States, then here is their chance to catch the profit coming out. The only problem? Finding out which of the thousands of daily pedestrian crossers…

The Last Catch

by Jonathan StackWriter/Director/Producer There are two books that shaped my childhood. The first was Zorba The Greek, which I read while traveling to Greece in 1971. The second was Moby Dick, which I read in 11th grade. Both have challenged me and inspired me to live my life as an adventurer and storyteller.This summer the memory of childhood…

Yellowstone’s Baby Animals

Winter in Yellowstone National Park is a harsh environment, a place where wildlife has to fight to survive. But as the weather warms up, naturalist Casey Anderson explores the backcountry to observe signs of the blooming spring. The melted snow causes muddy run-offs through the park. Migratory birds are returning for summer, bears emerge from…

Cool Dog Tricks

Can your dog do tricks? Roscoe knows how to eat like a champ and Moose will high-five for a snack. That’s about it. But check out these video clips of dogs doing some pretty awesome tricks…In this video below, this dog does all sorts of tricks with a skateboard. Just goes to show how positive…

On this day in 1910, German scientist Fritz Haber and his British colleague Robert Le Rossignol were issued a U.S. patent for an industrial process to synthesize ammonia from its chemical components nitrogen and hydrogen. It was Haber who gets most of the credit for actually inventing the process—Le Rossignol’s contribution was designing equipment to perform it—so…

Can The Gulf Survive?

by Elliott Cowand Jr.Sound Recordist On April 20th 2010, the Deepwater Horizon drilling platform floating above 5,000 feet of water, 50 miles off the coast of Louisiana erupted in a fireball killing 11 crew members. Immediately following the BP oil spill, many were asking themselves the same questions. How bad is it? How long will it…

Captive Animal Enrichment

Animal enrichment is a term frequently used at zoos, aquariums and wildlife facilities. But what exactly does it mean? Heidi Hellmuth, Curator of Enrichment and Training at the Smithsonian’s National Zoological Park, explains it to Nat Geo Inside WILD. Animal enrichment strategies encourage mental and physical stimulation and exercise, and methods can vary significantly, depending…

Dogs and Dewclaws

Some dogs have an extra digit — called dewclaws — on the inside of their leg. But since dewclaws don’t come in direct contact with surfaces, the nail can quickly overgrow. What should dog owners know about dew claws? I talked with Charlotte-based veterinarian Joy Fine to find out some answers.“In some breeds, dewclaws are…

Ancient Sudarium

by Ancient X-Files production team Jerusalem is a difficult city to film in. Not least because we were caught in a city where riots happen daily. We couldn’t travel anywhere without coming into contact with a military check point or road blocks. We had to change plans every minute and be flexible about what and…

The Black Cup of Christ

by Ancient X-Files production team Filming the story of the Valencia chalice was an extraordinary experience. This is a relic that is venerated as the true cup of Christ, used at the Last supper, not just by the priests of the Cathedral, or the devout of Valencia, but by a wide outreaching community of researchers…

Lion Vs. Antelope

Video Preview: A lioness sets it’s hungry eyes on a herd of antelope and attacks. She succeeds but then two male lions challenge her kill. Deadly Instincts: Ultimate Enemies premieres on Nat Geo Wild Thursday September 24 at 8P et/pt.

Wildlife of Gomantong Cave

Gomantong Cave is a colossal limestone habitat located in Sabah, Malaysia on the island of Borneo. This cave has two complexes – Black and White – named after the swiftlet bird species that call it home. Parts of the cave soar to almost 300 feet in height.  Okay, so I was warned about how gross this place…

Shark Eden

Miles from civilization, Dr. Enrich Sala leads a team of scientists along with resident explorer Mike Fay in search of ancient secrets and living treasure. An ecosystem virtually untouched and unchanged for over 200 years, these southern pacific reefs are full of coral, fish, and especially — sharks, most of which have never seen a human before. The…

On this day in 1889, a Scottish physician named Alexander Dey patented the dial time recorder, a device that allowed employers to track the exact time at which workers arrived and how long they spent on the job. The device featured a dial, which employees used to point to their assigned identification number and then pressed…

On this day in 1869, Mary Mallon was born in County Tyrone, Ireland. As a teenager, Mallon emigrated to the U.S. According to a biography of her by Judith Walzer Leavitt, Mallon was skilled in the kitchen, and eventually found employment as a live-in cook for affluent families in New York City. Unfortunately for those who ate…