Tag Archives: documentary

Investigative Journalism: Rich Hall Documentary UFO Disappointment

As a Rich Hall fan and UFOlogist, I was excited to hear him unquestioningly state that a UFOlogist, Dr. King, had revealed the  Mayak nuclear explosion in the summer of 1958, nearly twenty years before it was officially declared by the Soviet Union (1.10 in the video).

Hall has always seemed very questioning and criticising, putting himself out there on the edge of controversy, to criticise everything, including his own country the most!

So I thought that gave it more veracity. If it was just a King disciple who’d said it, I’d have questioned it straight away.

That’s also a lesson to everybody, not to trust anybody entirely; even those you trust the most!

Providing Doubt to Dr. King Claim

However, after reading more about King the last week, and relating to some of his thoughts and teachings, yesterday I found an article on sobify about Mayak saying it was reported in the Western press in the spring: ‘Although vague reports of a “catastrophic accident” causing “radioactive fallout over the Soviet and many neighbouring states” began appearing in the western press between 13 and 14 April 1958, it was only in 1976 that Zhores Medvedev made the nature and extent of the disaster known to the world.’ (sobify (.com))

I don’t know if King heard those media reports, or if he was in contact with Aetherius as he claimed, but it does create doubt, and I’d have thought Hall would’ve included that, as the diligent funny cynic he seems.

Aetherius X-File

I wanted to believe, because I like the subject, and like Hall’s documentaries, and what King was claiming, and who he was (someone from my demographic pushing himself to the extreme).

My books were written with the same kind of questioning and edited detail above, learnt over a decade of higher education, spent on the edges of critical theory, pushing the boundaries of the system to the right and left!:

Moon Documentary Facts and Images

Do We Really Need the Moon? might seem like a silly question for a werewolf, but not so much for humans. The traditional werewolf and a wolf did feature in a documentary presented by Maggie Aderin-Pocock, along with lots of magnificent moon facts and greenygrey images. It’s available on the BBC iplayer (just in the U.K. I think) until Tuesday, and may be elsewhere on the internet?

Moon Documentary Facts and Images

Hi, it’s Stephen Werewolfing, satirical science correspondent at the Greenygrey inspired by legendary astrophysicist Stephen Hawking. I was limited to ten greenygrey images and moon facts in my assignment, but could have got much more, as the moon documentary was that interesting and greenygrey. The first three greenygrey images were within the first 42 seconds.

I think ten greenygrey images is too much to load onto you in one go, so here’s the first five, with another five in the second instalment of this howlingly Hawkingish high-five x2:

Moon Facts and Images

1. The moon is 14,000 miles away from earth. We only see one side of the moon because it takes exactly as long to rotate once on its axis as it does to circle the Earth. The Dark Side of the Moon made famous by Pink Floyd has more craters, meaning it has stopped a lot of asteroids hitting Earth, helping to preserve life on the planet.

Screenshot (3)

2. The moon was created after an impact between another planet and a planet that is now our planet Earth. The debris dislodged in the collision coalesced into a ball. The moon was initially much closer to Earth, and must have looked like a gigantic orange disc in the sky from our planet.

Screenshot (4)

3. Moon tides might have started life on Earth. Darwin thought life started in warm little ponds, and many scientists now think he was right. In a simple chemistry experiment in the documentary they replicated tidal power, sunshine and a process of mixing and drying to create Ribonucleic acid (RNA), one of the main building blocks of life.

Screenshot (5)

4. While there is no evidence that the full moon has any direct effect on animals or humans, it is brighter than the moon at other times, so nocturnal animals can be more active when there’s a full moon. It can also provide a time cue, and coral mainly spawns on or around the full moon.

Screenshot (6)

5. By sending laser light photons to the moon, and measuring those returning, they can tell how far the moon is travelling away from the Earth now. They have found a clear pattern showing the moon still travelling away from Earth at 3.78 centimetres a year, about the same speed as finger nails grow.

Screenshot (7)


I hope you’ve enjoyed the first trip to the moon, and are looking forward to the second…

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Wolf or Human: Witch is Werewolf Better Half?

Hi, it’s Chris Packwolf, nature correspondent at the Greenygrey. We werewolves often debate the Big Questions about life, such as which/witch is our better half: human or wolf.

Polar Bear Squares
Polar Bear Squares (Photo credit: gehmflor)

Polar Bear Family and Me 

Polar bear
Polar bear (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

While the merits and faults of humans and wolves are sure to Bram Stoker up a heated debate in the Greenygrey world, we are usually in universal agreement that humans are more empathetic than polar bears.

This is because we watched the Polar Bear Family and Me, and read Marc Latham’s Natural World Media article about the series.

Polar Bears and Humanity Difference 

Ursus_maritimus_Polar_bear_with_cub.jpg, with ...
Ursus_maritimus_Polar_bear_with_cub.jpg, with color correction and cropping (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

While the polar bear family was shown to be very loving and caring of each other, they were obviously just trying to survive, and didn’t have the time or inclination to ‘care’ about other species.

Although humans are of course more destructive to the planet and other species overall, and polar bears make friends with huskies, some humans try to protect their animal competitors; and even those animal predators who threaten humanity, which might just lift  humanity above its predator competitors.

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Wolves in North America BBC Documentary Transcript and Photos

Hi, it’s Greenygrey. Here’s the second half of the Land of the Lost Wolves two-part documentary transcript, with a few photos. Enjoy!

Land of the Lost Wolves 2: Summer

Series producer: Jonny Keeling

Narrator: Alisdair Simpson

The second and final episode of Land of the Lost Wolves saw the wildlife team return to the Cascade Mountains in summer. They set up a summer camp 100 miles lower than the winter camp.

Only 2 of the 10 Lookout pack wolves are thought to have survived.

But there are reports of other wolves that have travelled south into the US, and even further south than the Lookout pack. Isaac Babcock and Jasmine Minbashian head south to follow them up.

Meanwhile, Gordon Buchanan heads north to Canada, to search for the source of the wolves heading south.

Narrator reminds us that European settlers saw wolves as a threat or competition, and waged war on them. Then says that following sightings, government scientists managed to capture and radio-collar a young female wolf. Show a photo of her. It is the furthest south in the Cascades for nearly a century.

They also took a DNA sample from the wolf, and it shows she is a direct descendant of the Lookout pack. The DNA shows the wolf line stretches to the northern Cascades, and Great Bear Rainforest. More than 500 miles above where Jasmine is searching for wolves.

Switch to a boat on the Canadian Shore, where Gordon is now. It is preparing to sail up the coast in search of the Lookout pack’s ancestors. Introduce expert tracker, Chris Morgan, who is with Gordon. Chris left Lancashire, England at 19 to spend time with and study wolves and bears.

Few people live where they are heading, so wolves are quite safe, although they are still wary of humans. Shows Chris travelling up; he says it’s one of the most beautiful places he’s been, with cascading waterfalls dropping down through forest into the sea.

Cascade waterfall through forest to sea

After landing, he says it is one of the wettest places in North America. He sets off on foot through a forest, and says it is dangerous because he could bump into an unsuspecting bear, so he calls out, to warn them, as grizzlies can be dangerous. He says almost all bear attacks in North America are under these circumstances, with people bumping into unsuspecting bears.

Gordon takes an easier route, along the coastline. He films a black bear. The bear smells him, and comes to investigate. Gordon says it has poor eyesight. When the bear gets closer and realises it is a human it runs off the other way. Gordon says it’s a really peaceful animal, so misunderstood; and almost all large carnivores are the same. We’re just scared of things that are bigger than us and have big teeth.

Narrator says it has a bad effect on the balance of nature. Show Doug Smith’s eco message again: how the systems were put together over millions of years.

Jasmine takes to the air to try and locate the radio-collared wolf, but there’s too much forest cover.

Meanwhile, Isaac is searching on the ground. Meets with biologist, Bill Gaines, who shows him the recorded passage of the wolf’s movement on a map. She seems to be going back to one site. Says it’s hopefully a ‘rendezvous’ site.

Switch to Doug Smith, who says a ‘rendezvous’ site is like the spokes on a wheel; the wolves will fan out to hunt in the summer and then return to rendezvous.

Switch back to the Great Bear forest, where Chris is hoping wolves will be feeding on salmon. Finds remains of pink salmon and chum fish with brains (full of fat and protein) bitten out: sign of wolf kills. Then he finds wolf scat with salmon teeth in it. He finds a part of the coastline with a lot of bird activity. Calls Gordon up, and Gordon goes up there and sets up a hide. Gordon says wolves have been catching fish like bears for thousands of years.

Narrator says wolves are very adaptable. Doug Smith says they are very intelligent animals, with large brains for their size. When they’re hunting animals up to 10 times bigger, like bison, they have to be smart about it. Wolves only weigh 100 lbs and can get their brains kicked out.

Narrator says a single wolf is one of the most intelligent animals, but when they get together as a pack they can hunt the most formidable prey.

Switch to Isaac, who says a rendezvous site is like a puppy playground; pups stay there, while the adults go out to hunt. Isaac is such an experienced tracker that he can spot the smallest signs.

A new influx of salmon has brought lots of activity around Gordon’s hide: including a seal.

Chris finds a grizzly fishing.

Show greenygrey Cascades, with more rain dampening Gordon’s spirits. Then a wolf arrives. Rusty brown coloured coat, characteristic of the coastal wolves.

coastal wolf

The wolf fishes. Only a handful of people have filmed this behaviour. Gordon says it is the fulfilment of a lifetime’s ambition; calls it a handsome, handsome dog. Narrator says there have been reports of wolves hunting seals, snatching seabirds, foraging for mussels, and swimming 7 miles at a stretch. This similar behaviour to humans has brought the two into contact. Gordon says to see them in the wild is in contrast to their human image: we fear them, see them as competition, one of the most interesting and charismatic animals.

Just 90 miles away from one of America’s biggest cities, Isaac thinks he’s found a new pack. Finds an old wolf scat, a bone, and hears movement. Show Seattle and Cascade mountains on map. Narrator says young wolves will strike out on their own, and could be a problem, as it’s only a few miles from farmland, and the locals might not be friendly. Doug Smith says he thinks the Cascades offer good wolf habitat, but it’s whether the locals will allow it.

Narrator says it is one of the most contentious issues in North America, and nowhere more than in Idaho, where 35 wolves were reintroduced in the mid 1990s. With legal protection they have thrived, but now a ban on hunting has been lifted. Jasmine goes to meet an Idaho hunter.

Gordon goes to meet the leader of the Idaho anti-wolf coalition, Ron Gillette, at a rodeo, says it is cowboy country, where attitudes haven’t changed for a century; says Gillette and followers fear wolves will eat their cows and harm their way of life. Gillette says horses and cattle are being lost, it is the most vicious, cruel predator in North America, taking the prey down and sucking the blood out of them as it pumps out. The experiment is over, get rid of them.

Gordon says Gillette’s not talking about reducing wolf numbers, he’s talking about extermination; thought we’d been through that 100 years ago. Doug Smith said wolves do kill livestock, but it tends to be ‘uncommon to rare’ and those wolves will always be dealt with. The wolves were wiped out to set up the ranches, but now that the ranches are there, we are respecting their place. If wolves kill livestock they are dead. That’s the story. Much more complicated is if they are killing elk and deer.

Jasmine meets hunter, Milton Terley (spelling?) in Idaho. There’s a big sign outside his house or a clubhouse (?) saying ‘I Shoot Illegal Aliens! (The Grey Canadian Type). He says he wants to get a wolf today, let’s go hunting. Has an AR15, semi-automatic.

Narrator says Jasmine has spent her time protecting wolves, but could now see one shot in front of her.

Back in Washington state, Isaac has seen nothing all day at the suspected rendezvous site. Then he hears howl of a lone adult wolf. Then pups as well. Says there’s a bunch of wolves in there, and close.

Jasmine is finding it hard to face seeing a beautiful and intelligent animal killed; but here to be open-minded. Milton thinks he sees a wolf, but it’s a deer. Then says it’s the first one he’s seen this year. Jasmine says he should go out with her more often, before asking if it’s because they’re harder to find or if they’re not there. Hunter says hard-nosed hunters say they’re not there.

Narrator says elk and deer hunting is a multi-million dollar industry in Idaho, and if wolves are decimating their numbers whole communities could suffer.

Milton says there is a place for wolves, but only if they are kept in check. Every time he hears a wolf howl it sends shivers down his spine, as it means one animal is dominating another; nature is a little sick, one set of creatures is devouring another set. Jasmine asks if he thinks it’s humanity’s role to keep it in check. He says he wants balance. Jasmine says she can live with that. Milt says there are radicals on both sides who won’t. Says his friends had said she was a radical environmentalist and he shouldn’t meet her.

Narrator says they have found a middle ground where wolves and humans can share the remaining wild spaces.

Doug Smith says the wolf’s efficiency as a killer is overestimated, and most hunts are unsuccessful. What you’ve got is an evolutionary arms race between wolf and prey, with both adapting to each other over thousands of years, and the margin between them down to minutiae; the image of the wolf as a wanton killer wiping out herds is just false. Wolves target weak animals because they are generally easier to catch; healthy animals generally rebuff wolf attacks and the herds grow stronger as a result. Anti-wolf people often care more about values, who is the top predator between human and wolf; who is dominant. People in the middle who want wolves in some places where they can live in peace and not others where they will invite conflict is going to be the most fruitful for solving our wolf issues.

In Washington, Isaac has been camping out for days, but not seen any wolves. But then sees a pup; lot browner than he expected. Another pup arrives, and is greeted by the other; the first puts its jaw on the back of the other’s neck; kind of stroking it as it walks below it.

wolf pups greeting

Isaac says he thinks there are four pups, what is most exciting is not seeing them, but thinking what they represent; seeing them this far south means the wolves are returning to Washington right in front of our eyes. Only question is ‘are we going to let them?’

Narrator says Jasmine has been waiting 20 years to see wolves return to the Cascades. Isaac has told her he’s located the female, but kept the pups as a surprise. Jasmine arrives and watches the film of the wolves howling; says it goes right to her heart, and it’s a sound she wants to continue to hear in these mountains.

Doug Smith says he thinks the pioneer packs have revised their thinking of wolves; they used to think wolves needed wild pristine land to survive, but these are surviving in land that isn’t that wild. Gordon asks what he hopes for wolves in the region in 200 years time? Doug says he’d like to see wolves along a mountain corridor stretching from Canada to Mexico. That’s not to say they’ll be everywhere, people needn’t be fearful, just small amounts of wolves living with little contact with humans, in habitats they can live.

Narrator says Doug’s vision might not be far away. Wolf numbers continue to grow in Washington, with 5 packs now confirmed in the state; and down into Oregon state. And now a wolf has also reached northern California.

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Land of the Lost Wolves BBC Documentary Transcript

Hi, it’s Greenygrey. They’re awful busy creating a new site over at Suite 101, so we thought we’d skip the articles and just copy our transcript here in two parts for now, so you’ll be the first to see it. It will hopefully be of interest to you, and should be particularly useful for those unable to see the documentaries. A mutt called Jeff transcribed them, so blame him for any mistakes. There’s more about muttley Jeff at the end of the transcript.

Land of the Lost Wolves, part 1: Winter

Series producer: Jonny Keeling

Narrator: Alisdair Simpson

Across the planet, most wildlife is under threat, but against the odds, one animal is making a comeback. In North America it is controversial. Team of wildlife experts go to the frontline, to work out how far they are spreading.

For thousands of years wolves were North America’s top predator. Fierce, formidable. When Europeans arrived they were pushed out of the US, and into wilds of Canada. More than a million exterminated.

Introduce wildlife experts team:

Gordon Buchanan, global wildlife cameraman.

Jasmine Minbashian, local wildlife campaigner: spent years travelling through the Cascade Mountains, dreaming of the return of wolves. She was 5 months pregnant, but didn’t want to pass up this chance.

Isaac Babcock: wildlife tracker.

Winter base camp in the Cascades. They have one month to find pack: it’s 70 years since wolves were in the Cascades.

Wolves can smell humans from a mile away, and hear them from much further

Buchanan uses wolf urine on tree to try and attract wolves

Wolves can travel 50 miles in a day.

Pack in region been named the Lookout Pack, thought to be 10 strong.

Doug Smith, wolf expert. Says 200 years from now he’d like to see wolves from Canada down to Mexico, a mountain highway.

Team tracking the pack in winter, as tracks easier to find.

Isaac teaches Gordon to howl, try it in one valley, but no response.

Ask locals, who say they have sighted wolves.

Buchanan (in greenygrey) unpacks a robo wolf: it howls, and they hope it will attract wolves.

Gordon Buchanan with robowolf.

Then Buchanan hikes into mountains with 35kg of kit. Says wolves can do 50 times his speed; they are built for speed and stamina. Shows difficulty of surviving in the mountains, and how wolves are perfectly adapted to the situation.

Isaac shows Gordon a wolf track: nails, heel pad, toes. Gordon says they are enormous: ‘We’ve got a wolf, that is a wolf.’ But it’s not a fresh track.

Jasmine looks through film footage from cameras near camp, and sees a wolf coming around a tree. Good news at the end of a tough week.

Doug Smith says large carnivores like wolves are as important to the  structure of the natural system as sunshine and climate. Wolves are the top animal predator in North America. Without wolves, deer and elk overgraze, and this harms the environment.

Doug Smith shows how reintroducing wolves has balanced the Yellowstone environment. Plants have grown again, providing a habitat for songbirds, wood for beavers etc.

Biologists hope wolves will balance nature in the same way in the Cascades Mountains.

Gordon sets up a hide near a carcass, with deer distress calls intermittently played.

Isaac finds fresh tracks made by 2 wolves, about an hour ahead. Then finds the carcass of a young mule deer. He says wolves can crush bone down to nothing. Thinks they killed it a day or two ago, and have been coming down to feed on it since.

Show bobcat, cougars caught on camera. Cougars have benefitted from wolves’ absence.

Local biologist, Scott Fitkin, has heard wolves, and called Jasmine out at dawn. They listen to howling. First time she’s heard wolves in this area. Jasmine hopes there’s a female, and they are breeding. Then they see two wolves on the horizon. One is howling. Then they stop, and are just looking down. Jasmine says they are so calm.

Wolves howling mournfully on hill.

Back at camp, they review the video. Jasmine thinks the howling is mournful, and hopes it’s not a sign that the female is missing. They think the other wolf is a young male.

Doug Smith says that part of the appeal of the wolf is that they are a ‘noble species, that feels things like humans do’; a male who loses its mate will howl at a higher rate than normal for several days. Some biologists say the wolves are mourning. Don’t know for sure, but do know that for several days their behaviour is different.

Jasmine worries that the female is lost, and the alpha is waiting for her to return.

Gordon goes to meet ranchers. Wolves are protected by law in Washington state.

One rancher says they have a saying about dealing with wolves: ‘shoot, shovel and shut-up.’ Another three say that if wolves are a threat to their livestock and families they’ll shoot.

Gordon says it is okay when wolves and humans are kept apart, but when they are close together the controversy and clashes start.

Isaac finds a wolf den and goes inside. He says it looks like the pack has been broken up.

Narrator says wolves can survive on their own, but only thrive as part of a pack.

Doug Smith says a big part of wolf life is they are a social animal. Only 2-3 % of animals live as a family, and the wolf is one of them. Pups, yearlings, 2 year olds, sometimes even 3 year olds living under the alpha pair. We call it a pack, essentially it is a family, and they live in that social state all their lives.

Narrator says Lookout pack need pups to continue the pack.

Week 3, and Gordon is called into the Washington State Wildlife Enforcement HQ. An officer says they’d had 2 calls reporting an individual had killed a wolf, and they found a carcass. A lab report found it had been shot: it was missing its feet and head, and was decomposed when found. It had also been skinned. Done on purpose.

Gordon says Lookout pack is in dire straits, and man-made.

Then show newspaper headlines about wolf deaths, and narrator says 3 local people were later charged with killing 5 members of the Lookout pack. That’s why the team has been struggling to locate the pack, and only found 2 wolves.

Jasmine’s in camp. Her worst fears have come true.

She goes to meet Ron Gillette, anti-wolf campaigner. He shows photos of an elk he said was killed by wolves: all chewed out on the rear end, before being left. Another one with blood around.

Gillette says he wants big game herds for sports. Says wolves being good for the eco-system is a load of baloney.

Narrator says Lookout pack might be in decline, but reinforcements might be on the way, howling has been heard just 20 miles away, and new tracks found on the border with Canada.

Gordon goes out to investigate, with husky team. 8 hour climb.

Jasmine follows up a sighting over 100 miles further down from base camp. Jasmine said if verified, they will be the furthest south recorded.

Gordon howls on the mountain, joined in by the huskies, but no response. So he continues north to the border with Canada, the most inhospitable part of the mountains. Not even huskies can make it up there.

Local biologists have positioned cameras there. Gordon finds a wolf, and then two more, It is a new pack. Gordon has found a route wolves are using to cross into the States. Gordon says the Lookout pack, the pioneer pack, might be wiped out, but he hopes there is an unstoppable tide of wolves returning to Washington state.

*Mutt and Jeff is rhyming slang for deaf.


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South Downs Great British Countryside Best of Greenygrey

Hi, it’s Andy Wolfhol. Harry Silhouetteof-Wolfhowlingonhill tipped me off about a couple of greenygrey scenes that were like pure art on last night’s Great British Countryside South Downs episode. I had a to agree, with both showing sky and land working together in harmony. So I captured them and imported them into the Greenygrey world.

I have called them snake and ladders.

And without further ado,
here they are for you to view:

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Great British Countryside in Yorkshire Review and Images

Hi, it’s Harry Silhouetteof-Wolfhowlingonthehill. Yes, the Yorkshire episode of The Great British Countryside lived up to expectations, with lots of greenygreyness from beginning to end. There are a lot of great countryside places they didn’t focus on, such as the Three Peaks, Brimham Rocks, Ingleton, Scarborough to Whitby coast etc, but I suppose there’s only so many places you can fit into an hour long programme.

There were no startling new revelations, like the previous week’s copper greenygreyness, just the usual green fields and grey rocks, sea and sky. But they did look very beautiful a lot of the time, with green and grey shown to be working together in timeless harmony.

And we did notice that even the title image of the programme is in greenygrey, and looks like it might be an image from Yorkshire.

The Grey and Super Smart Animals Free New Articles

Cat Rests in Tent - Marc Latham

Hi, it’s Grey. I’m settling back into the Greenygrey world nicely, and have been catching up with articles by our ol’ partner, Marc Latham.

He’s written four recently. Two criticising The Grey anti-wolf wolfophobic film, and two about the two episodes of a great documentary about super smart animals.

They are all available on Marc’s Suite 101 page.

Right, I’m off to put my feet up now…like the tent-top cat in that photo!

Wolf in the House: Cute not Killer

Hi, it’s Harry Silhouetteof-Wolfhowlingonthehill. Our blog about the demonisation of the ‘big bad wolf’ on Celebrity Big Brother the other day got me thinking. So I searched for an old BBC Horizon documentary I saw called The Secret Lives of Dogs.

Wolf in the House on Documentary

The video featured footage from a research experiment in Hungary. Wolves were reared in a house, and they tried to train them like dogs.

They found that by 8 weeks the wolves were different. The wolves had their own ideas, and didn’t listen to orders. The nurturing didn’t work.

But the wolves weren’t nasty or dangerous, they were just disruptive and uncontrollable.

The footage lasts on this video from about 3:30 minutes to 7:50 minutes. The wolf coverage is preceded by a clever collie. After the wolf coverage it is shown how a group of foxes were tamed over a long period of time, and I’ll discuss that tomorrow.

Billy Connolly’s Route 66 Meeting with Wolves

Eastern wolves at Wolf Science Center, Ernstbr...
Image via Wikipedia

Hi, it’s Green.  Here at the Greenygrey, one of our favourite activities is trying to defend wolves, which are of course half of what us werewolves are made of. Of course, the average human has more care and compassion than the average wolf, but wolves can be very loving and playful too, showing many of the same characteristics that make us and our pet dogs feel empathetic towards each other.  And comparing the human and wolf as species, there is no doubt which has been the most destructive.

Billy Connolly meets Wolves on Route 66

It was therefore nice to see Billy Connolly, who previously followed Grey and I’s original epic Rambles across Canada for a documentary series, seeing the softer and more timid side of wolves when he visited a wolf reserve in Missouri in his current rambling documentary Billy Connolly’s Route 66.

Connolly was shocked that the wolves were so wary of humans even within their enclosures, and said that all horror stories about them are rubbish. The wolf feature starts about 12:30 into the programme.

The video is available until mid-October in the UK; don’t know if it’s available elsewhere.

Thanks to Connolly and the programme makers for the wolf time.

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