Inside Nature’s Giants: Monster Python
Airs Wednesday, May 30, 2012 at 10 p.m. on KPBS TV
Originally published January 23, 2012 at 2:47 p.m., updated May 24, 2012 at 4:25 p.m.
A team of experts dissect the largest animals on the planet to uncover their evolutionary secrets in INSIDE NATURE'S GIANTS. In each episode, veterinary scientist Mark Evans, comparative anatomist Joy Reidenberg, biologist Simon Watt and evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins explore the anatomy of a distinct giant predator to reveal how it works.
"Monster Python" - In Florida’s Everglades, Mark Evans and Dr. Joy Reidenberg meet “python hunters” who are attempting to control the python population (approximately 100,000) through a cull. They join reptile expert Jeanette Wyneken to dissect two pythons: a nine-foot male and a 14-foot female.
The program explores the science of slithering, as well as the development of “infra-red goggles” that let the snakes hunt warm-blooded prey in the dark and a flexible jaw that allows them to stretch their mouths around huge prey, including alligators.
The scientists make an amazing discovery in the female: ovaries bulging with 40 egg follicles ready to be fertilized. Richard Dawkins describes how snakes evolved from four-legged lizard-like ancestors, and biologist Simon Watt finds out what it feels like to be crushed by a real-life python.
"Giant Squid" airs Wednesday, June 20, 2012 at 10 p.m.
"Camel" airs Wednesday, June 27, 2012 at 10 p.m.