Inside Nature’s Giants – The Dinosaur Bird (Channel 4 HD Documentary)
The Bafta-winning series returns to Australia on the trail of a bird that’s been described as a living dinosaur. The cassowary hides in Queensland’s tropical rainforests. It’s a gigantic bird with a fearsome reputation. It can be taller and heavier than a full-grown man and is armed with five-inch talons that have actually killed humans. The cassowary has earned the dubious reputation of being the most dangerous bird in the world, yet unless it feels threatened, it struts quietly around the jungle and, occasionally, coastal areas.With a bright blue head that’s adorned with a horn-like crown, and red pendulums of flesh dangling from its neck, this is, by any standards, a bizarre bird.
Mark Evans and Joy Reidenberg carry out a dissection on a cassowary that was hit by a car. Unfortunately, such accidents are quite common on roads that cut through their territory. The team investigate the mystery of how it produces its deep resonant mating call, how it evolved to have such stunted wings and such sharp talons, and the extraordinary breathing apparatus of this giant bird. The award winning series that gets under the skin of the largest animals on the planet. Inside Nature’s Giants dissects these animals to uncover their evolutionary secrets. Most wildlife documentaries tell you how an animal behaves, but by dissecting an animal and studying its anatomy we can see how animals really work. Experts in comparative anatomy, evolution and behaviour will put some of the most popular and enigmatic large animals under the knife. Veterinary scientist Mark Evans will interpret their findings, biologist Simon Watts tests the animals physiology and Richard Dawkins traces back the animals place on the tree of life.