Sunday, 29 June 2008
Tiger vs Bear (but not The Bear, thankfully)
I've been watching the DVD of the excellent Tiger - Spy In The Jungle documentary recently, which not only has the bonus value of seriously freaking my cats out but also features what, to my knowledge, is the only footage of a tiger having a piss ever shown on the BBC. It sometimes seems a little pleased with its own technological prowess, but why not? By training elephants to carry special “trunkcams”, it’s managed to compile three years of the most astonishing up-close and personal footage of five tiger cubs in India’s Pench National Park. The result feels more like a secret diary than any nature programme I can remember.
Spy In The Jungle also features sloth bears. These are now right up there with capybaras and ostriches on my list of Animals I Must Own When I Get A Considerably Bigger, Hotter Garden: lovably ludicrous creatures that seem to have been not so much conceived as made from scratch by an overzealous hippie children’s artist circa 1973. They’ve got pretty nasty-looking claws and an obvious attitude problem, as is evinced when one of them has a stand-off with one of the four cubs. Nonetheless there’s no prizes for guessing who will end the encounter running off into the jungle like a girl.