Lots of Elly on Telly
I watched Inside Nature’s Giants on Channel 4 last night. At first, I thought a programme about slicing up large (and cute!) animals wouldn’t really be my thing. However, 20 minutes in and I was glued to the TV.
The programme was a fascinating insight into the anatomy of an elephant. Scientists and vets dissected the dead animal and explained the history behind its evolution and working parts. It was a truly educational experience! For example, they showed how the trunk has a bit of bone that effectively acts like a finger – how cool is that? And elephants flap their ears to stay cool.
At first, the sight of the dead elephant made me slightly concerned – had they killed it for the purpose of dissection? But then they explained that she was put down. She had such bad arthritis in her leg that she would’ve been in enormous pain prior to her death. They even showed the leg bones and how the cartilage had completely worn away. Amazing stuff. If you’re thinking the actual dissection would gross you out, think again. It was actually not that bad (this coming from a seriously squeamish blood-phobe)! The elephant was so huge that when they started slicing it up the whole thing looked almost unreal. During the process, they periodically interjected with rather amusing shots of the audience looking totally disinterested. That made me laugh. But apart from that, I found myself being educated in a much more stimulating and interesting way than any of my school biology lessons back in the day. Every so often an ‘oooohhh’ or ‘aaahhh’ would pop out of my mouth as I sat watching, eager to learn more.
If you missed this episode, I strongly recommend catching up on 4oD. Next week, they’re examining the whale. I never thought there would come a day when I look forward to seeing a whale dissection but there you go, life is full of surprises!