Digital

C4 to stream dead hippo feast

UK pubcaster Channel 4 is lining up Hippo: Wild Feast Live, a live streaming natural history event which will see a decomposing hippo carcass being devoured by predators such as hyenas and crocodiles.
October 21, 2011

UK pubcaster Channel 4 is lining up Hippo: Wild Feast Live, a live streaming natural history event which will see a decomposing hippo carcass being devoured by predators such as hyenas and crocodiles.

Streamed on Channel4.com, the broadcaster says it will use a host of cutting edge technology to bring the African savannah “straight to the desktop, classroom and lounge.”

Fixed-camera rigs, motion detectors, infra-red cameras, laser thermometers, digital microscopes and electronic tracking systems – including micro-transmitters – “will connect natural history aficionados with all the predators, scavengers, birds and insects that feast on the hippo.”

The network added: “The hippo carcass will be located in Zambia’s Luangwa Valley by a section of the Luangwa river frequented by a range of predators and scavengers including leopards, lions, Nile crocodiles, hyena, wild dogs, baboons, monitor lizards and marabou storks – known as the ‘undertaker birds’ which use their 10-foot wingspan to swoop down and see off other smaller vultures.”

The event will be streamed live online beginning today (October 21), with a final 1 x 90 minute program airing on TV on November 7 at 9 p.m. GMT.

There will also be a series of two-minute live TV updates on location, presented by Mark Evans (Inside Nature’s Giants, Brave New World), on Channel 4 each evening from October 21-26. The live streaming will be an interactive experience with viewers encouraged to tweet questions to Evans.

Channel 4′s specialist factual commissioning editor Tanya Shaw said: “This interactive project builds on the success of Elephant: Life After Death, which followed a five-tonne elephant being transformed into six million calories worth of fat, meat and guts, feeding a whole new cycle of life.

“This time, by streaming the action live, we are dealing with wildlife at its most raw, bloody and immediate – it will be fascinating to see how events unfold, and we want viewers to interact with the experts and share this unique content with their friends.”

Hippo: The Wild Feast is being produced by Endemol-owned Tigress Productions (Elephant: Life After Death). Dick Colthurst is executive producer, Sarah Peat is producer and Jonny Young is director.

In a statement, Evans said: “The river is a prime location for some of the biggest predators in Zambia – we may well see fierce showdowns between rivals for these vital calories – from Nile crocodiles and lions to hyenas and the notoriously vicious honey badger.

“The eating mechanisms of the different animals is fascinating – from crocodiles who use each other as leverage for a ‘death roll’ to twist off the meat – to marabou storks who gulp down pounds of flesh which they store in their gullets.”

 

About The Author
Barry Walsh is editor and content director for realscreen, and has served as editor of the publication since 2009. With a career in entertainment media that spans two decades, prior to realscreen, he held the associate editor post for now defunct sister publication Boards, which focused on the advertising and commercial production industries. Before Boards, he served as editor of Canadian Music Network, a weekly music industry trade, and as music editor for HMV.com. As content director, he also oversees the development of content for the brand's market-leading events, the Realscreen Summit and Realscreen West, as well as new content initiatives.

Menu

Search