Nature (Season 36) – Animals with Cameras, A NATURE Miniseries

Air date: 01/31/2018

Never-Before-Seen Animal Behavior Revealed in Animals with Cameras, A Nature Miniseries, Premiering Wednesdays, January 31 – February 14 on PBS

 Journey with wildlife cameraman Gordon Buchanan as the three-part series explores the secret lives of animals through their eyes

Go where no human cameraman can go and witness a new perspective of the animal kingdom in Animals with Cameras, A Nature Miniseries. The new three-part series journeys into animals’ worlds using custom, state-of-the-art cameras worn by the animals themselves. Capturing never-before-seen behavior, these animal cinematographers help expand human understanding of their habitats and solve mysteries that have eluded scientists until now. Animals with Cameras, A Nature Miniseries premieres nationwide Wednesdays, January 31 – February 14, 2018 at 8 p.m. EST on PBS (check local listings). Each episode will be available to stream the following day at and on PBS apps.

Wildlife cameraman Gordon Buchanan (Nature Snowbound: Animals of Winter) and a team of pioneering animal behaviorists join forces to explore stories of animal lives “told” by the animals themselves. The cameras are built custom by camera design expert Chris Watts to fit on the animals unobtrusively and to be easily removed at a later point. From this unique vantage point, experience the secret lives of nine different animal species. Sprint across the savanna with a cheetah, plunge into the ocean with a seal and swing through the trees with a chimpanzee.

“The chance to capture elusive moments, like a penguin’s underwater hunting habits or a meerkat family’s sleeping rituals in their underground burrow, was an extraordinary experience I never thought I would be privy to,” said Gordon Buchanan. “Thanks to the special cameras, we were able to answer some tough questions that scientists have always wondered about: why do devil rays migrate every summer? What personality of dog is most effective in protecting a herd of sheep from wolves? Why is there an overpopulation of brown bears in Turkey, when they are endangered elsewhere?”

“Never before have we seen such high-quality footage directly from the animal’s point of view,” said Nature executive producer Fred Kaufman. “This miniseries greatly expands our comprehension of animal behavior and this camera technology opens up new possibilities for discovering so much more.”

The one-of-a-kind sequences captured by the animals include several on-camera firsts. The cameras allowed for newborn meerkats to be shown in their burrow for the first time ever, as meerkat pups don’t emerge from the burrow until they reach three weeks old. In the Atlantic Ocean, an unborn devil ray is shown kicking inside its mother’s stomach — a phenomenon never before captured on film.

Animals with Cameras, A Nature Miniseries visits eight countries and features three different species per episode.


Episode 1 premieres Wednesday, January 31 at 8-9 p.m. on PBS (check local listings)

The astonishing collar-camera footage reveals newborn Kalahari Meerkats below ground for the first time, unveils the hunting skills of Magellanic penguins in Argentina, and follows the treetop progress of an orphaned chimpanzee in Cameroon.

Episode 2 premieres Wednesday, February 7 at 8-9 p.m. on PBS (check local listings)

The cameras capture young cheetahs learning to hunt in Namibia, reveal how fur seals off an Australian island evade the great white sharks offshore, and help solve a conflict between South African farmers and chacma baboons.

Episode 3 premieres Wednesday, February 14 at 8-9 p.m. on PBS (check local listings)

Deep-dive with Chilean devil rays in the Azores, track brown bears’ diets in Turkey, and follow dogs protecting flocks of sheep from gray wolves in Southern France.


Animals with Cameras, A Nature Miniseries is a BBC Studios Production for PBS and BBC with THIRTEEN Productions LLC. For Nature, Fred Kaufman is executive producer, and Bill Murphy is series producer. For BBC, Tim Martin is executive producer and Dan Rees is series producer.

Now in its 36th season on PBS, Nature pioneered a television genre that is now widely emulated in the broadcast industry, bringing the natural world to millions of viewers. The series has won more than 700 honors from the television industry, the international wildlife film communities and environmental organizations, including 18 Emmys, three Peabodys, the Christopher Parsons Outstanding Achievement Award given by the Wildscreen Festival and the Grand Teton Award given by the Jackson Hole Wildlife Film Festival.

The Nature website ( features full episodes, podcasts, filmmaker interviews, educational materials and more.

Support for this Nature program was made possible in part by the Arnhold Family in memory of Clarisse Arnhold, the Halmi Family in memory of Robert Halmi, Sr., Sue and Edgar Wachenheim III, the Kate W. Cassidy Foundation, the Lillian Goldman Charitable Trust, the Filomen M. D’Agostino Foundation, Rosalind P. Walter, Sandra Atlas Bass, by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, and by the nation’s public television stations.


About WNET
WNET is America’s flagship PBS station and parent company of THIRTEEN and WLIW21. WNET also operates NJTV, the statewide public media network in New Jersey. Through its broadcast channels, three cable services (KidsThirteen, Create and World) and online streaming sites, WNET brings quality arts, education and public affairs programming to more than five million viewers each week. WNET produces and presents such acclaimed PBS series as Nature, Great Performances, American Masters, PBS NewsHour Weekend, and a range of documentaries, children’s programs, and local news and cultural offerings. WNET’s groundbreaking series for children and young adults include Get the Math, Oh Noah! and Cyberchase as well as Mission US, the award-winning interactive history game. WNET highlights the tri-state’s unique culture and diverse communities through NYC-ARTS, Reel 13, NJTV News with Mary Alice Williams and MetroFocus, the daily multi-platform news magazine focusing on the New York region. In addition, WNET produces online-only programming including the award-winning series about gender identity, First Person, and an intergenerational look at tech and pop culture, The Chatterbox with Kevin and Grandma Lill. In 2015, THIRTEEN launched Passport, an online streaming service which allows members to see new and archival THIRTEEN and PBS programming anytime, anywhere:

About BBC

The BBC has an unrivalled global reputation for the factual content it produces across arts, history, documentaries and natural history, and broadcasts some 7,000 hours of high-quality, distinctive factual programs a year on television. The BBC is recognized as an industry leader in terms of innovation, consistently pushing the boundaries of its productions, delivered to our audience by the most engaging and inspirational experts.

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A camera-cheetah setting out to hunt. The cameras had internal stabilization and were able to film in slow-motion, enabling the crew to capture the hunt from on-board in great detail. From episode 2, premiering Wednesday, February 7 at 8-9 p.m. on PBS (check local listings). Credit: © BBC

A Magellanic penguin setting off to sea with its miniature camera at the Cabo dos Bahias colony in Argentina. The penguins spend up to three days at sea on foraging trips. Scientists placed the camera on board just before departure and removed it immediately after return. From episode 1, premiering Wednesday, January 31 at 8-9 p.m. on PBS (check local listings). Credit: Ester de Roij / © BBC

Gordon Buchanan and one of the three 'camera-cheetahs,' Namibia. A cheetah's head keeps very still when they run so it is the most stable place to put a camera. The camera harness were made of soft, flexible neoprene for maximum comfort. They were fastened on with Velcro so the cheetahs could easily remove them but, in practice, they ignored them once they were on. From episode 2, premiering Wednesday, February 7 at 8-9 p.m. on PBS (check local listings). Credit: © Gordon Buchanan

Orphan chimp, Kimbang, closely inspects her on-board camera and harness. The harness was made from a car tire and fastened on with Velcro so Kimbang could easily remove it if she wanted to. From episode 1, premiering Wednesday, January 31 at 8-9 p.m. on PBS (check local listings). Credit: © Gordon Buchanan

Gordon Buchanan waits to deploy a "Tow-cam" on a devil ray, near the Azores. The camera was designed to be towed behind the ray and was encased in a foam housing so it would float to the surface after detaching (after a few hours). From episode 3, premiering Wednesday, February 14 at 8-9 p.m. on PBS (check local listings). Credit: © Gordon Buchanan

At the Kalahari Meerkat Project in South Africa, Gordon Buchanan shows the meerkat camera crew the specially-designed cameras they will soon be wearing. From episode 1, premiering Wednesday, January 31 at 8-9 p.m. on PBS (check local listings). Credits: Anne Sommerfield / © BBC

Guardian dog with camera in Southern France. The cameras had infrared-red lights to be able to film the dogs' interactions with wolves at night. From episode 3, premiering Wednesday, February 14 at 8-9 p.m. on PBS (check local listings). Credits: George Pillas / © BBC