Bites at Animal Planet


16 Apr

George Hill, Indiana Pacers: Good Luck from Jeremy Wade & Your Animal Planet Friends!

Hey, George Hill and the Indiana Pacers! Good luck on the Playoffs!

We were more than happy to help deliver a special message from Jeremy Wade to George Hill. Click on the image below to watch the well wishes and see George's rection:


Go Indiana! And, FISH ON!


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24 Mar

That's Right - We're Doing a River Monsters LIVE Aftershow with Jeremy Wade

In case you haven't heard, we're bringing you Jeremy Wade LIVE, after the two-hour season premiere! The first half hour on your TV and the second half, online, right here at Stay tuned for updates - in the meantime, check out the official press release:


– Freshwater Detective and Biologist Jeremy Wade Sits Down for In-depth Q&A With Executive Producer Lisa Lucas to Answer Diehard Fan Questions –

-- Special to Begin on Television and Then Move Online Following the Season Premiere –

(March 24, 2014, New York) – For the very first time, Animal Planet will offer die-hard fans one-on-one access to RIVER MONSTERS host, Jeremy Wade, in a live special event. Wade returns to civilization to answer every burning question and give viewers intimate insight into the sixth season of the best-performing series in network history. The special RIVER MONSTERS: LIVE WITH JEREMY WADE will air Sunday, April 6, at 11 PM (ET/PT), following the two-hour RIVER MONSTERS season premiere, “Amazon Apocalypse,” which will air from 9-11 PM (ET/PT). This will be Animal Planet’s first-ever live aftershow. The special will be moderated by Animal Planet’s long-time RIVER MONSTERS executive producer, Lisa Lucas, and broadcast from the Knight Studio at the Newseum in Washington, D.C.
Following the season premiere of RIVER MONSTERS, viewers will have the opportunity to interact with Jeremy during a live broadcast, submitting their questions on Twitter and Facebook. The live special will feature exclusive content, never-before-heard, behind-the-scenes stories and a fresh perspective into Animal Planet’s most popular series. RIVER MONSTERS: LIVE WITH JEREMY WADE will broadcast live on Animal Planet from 11-11:30 PM (ET/PT) and then will continue exclusively online at from 11:30 PM-12 AM (ET/PT).


Tune in Sunday, April 6, at 9 PM e/p for the two-hour season premiere! And, stay tuned for the live aftershow at 11 PM e/p.


Visit the River Monsters show site for best moments from the show >>

21 Mar

Can Lobsters Feel Pain? Scientists Seek an Answer


Have you ever been horrified by the thought of cooking a lobster alive, fearing that it can feel the pain? According to a recent article in the Washington Post, scientist Robert Elwood has been working for the last eight years to uncover whether or not lobsters and other invertebrates do feel pain in the same way humans do.

When conducting tests on various kinds of shellfish, Elwood discovered some interesting results. According to the article, when Elwood brushed acetic acid of the antennae of prawns, the prawns began an intricate, prolonged grooming process - something that was diminished when the prawn were given a local anesthetic before the acid was placed on the antennae.

In the case of brown crabs, when crabs were touched with a brief electric shock, the crabs tended to rub at the spot for "an extended period of time." Similarly, if the crabs claw was removed, as it often is in fisheries, the crabs would rub and pick at the wounded area.

“These are not just reflexes,” Elwood told the Post. “This is prolonged and complicated behavior, which clearly involves the central nervous system.”

Elwood also researched another factor - how much pain is worth it for a great reward? In the case of hermit crabs, crabs that had located an ideal shell for their home were more willing to put up with greater increases in pain before moving out of the better shell. Elwood suggests that this behavior goes far beyond any reflex and could be a true relection that the animals are able to feel pain.

Despite Elwood's findings, the subject of pain remains a problem of consciousness. Pain remains "private to each individual." However, Elwood's findings have inspired change - some scientists have changed how they treat invertebrates in their labs and are encouraging others to do the same.

What do you think? Can lobsters and other invertebrates feel pain?

20 Mar

Emergency rescue: Operation Greenland

Contributed by Tanny Por

Chief Executive Officer Anne-Marie Ulrik in the Northern city of Aasiaat, where she lived until last April.

When life-threatening emergencies occur in tiny and distant Greenlandic settlements, what happens? The reality is tough, tells Executive Medical Officer of Greenland, Anne-Marie Ulrik.  

Fifty-seven, give or take. That’s the number of inhabitants who live in the northernmost settlement in Greenland, Siorapaluk. Located 77 degrees North, it’s a quiet and isolated village surrounded by grand mountains, ice and the cold sea. Traditional living is inevitable up here; hunting walrus, polar bears and seal is the way of life. 

You can imagine that for a village this size, everybody’s hit when tragedy strikes. Certainly, this was the case in 2013 when ill-prepared traditional food prompted a bizarre turn of deadly events.


Like everywhere else in the world, Greenlandic traditional cuisine is influenced by the surrounding nature. Life wasn’t easy for the Inuit ancestors, who lived in harsh polar conditions without the ease of modern technology. Learning traditional ways of preserving food was necessary for survival.   

Unfortunately for the residents of Siaropaluk last year, a special traditional meal of eider birds in a seal buried underground was not prepared properly. The food became toxic and resulted in the death of a man. Due to his old age, nobody suspected that he had suffered from botulism, a toxic form of food poisoning. Suspicions only arose when six other people got sick after the same meal was served again at the man’s funeral. The man’s own daughter also died.

[Tune in for an All-New Ice Cold Gold Tonight at 10PM E/P!]

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19 Feb

Australia’s Government is Poised to Kill Hundreds of Sharks off its Western Coast

An Open letter to Colin Barnett, Premier of Western Australia
By Jeremy Wade, Host of Animal Planet’s River Monsters

In the last couple of weeks, I have been contacted by several people in Western Australia, asking me to say something about your government’s recently introduced policy of killing of sharks off the Western Australian coast.

They have contacted me because I host Animal Planet’s most popular television series, RIVER MONSTERS, watched throughout the world, on the subject of fish that are potentially dangerous to humans. All the episodes of RIVER MONSTERS have one thing in common, which at first seems counter-intuitive: having found the fish in question and shown it to the camera, I return it alive to the water.
In the five years since RIVER MONSTERS launched, about three people have asked me why I do this. Everybody else understands the implicit message.
And the message is very simple. The way that humans should deal with the existence of potentially dangerous animals is not to try and wipe them out – or expect others to do this for us. Instead, we should take responsibility for our own safety by attempting to understand the behavior of these animals, thereby minimizing the chances that we’ll ever be in the wrong place at the wrong time.
In the case of sharks, a good proportion of the injuries and fatalities that I have looked into could have been prevented by taking basic precautions. For example, to avoid the attention of bull sharks (one of the three species targeted by your policy), don’t bathe near river mouths, in water clouded by sediment, where baitfish are jumping out of the water, or at dusk and dawn. As for great whites, they tend to congregate on humpback whale migration routes. The information is out there, but giving it more prominence is one area where money could be usefully spent.
I appreciate that in politics there is often pressure to be seen to be “doing something”, partly in case somebody comes along later, after something bad has happened, which in reality would have happened anyway, and claims it is a consequence of your inaction.  The good old confusion of correlation and causality.
But it’s not just inaction that carries possible consequences. I should also mention that setting baits near the shore could help to cause the very thing this policy is claimed to prevent. Sharks are more intelligent than is commonly imagined, on the level of associative learning, and arousing their suspicions about their natural food could nudge them in the direction of being more opportunistic.
Of course taking better care won’t mean that nobody will ever get bitten by a shark again. But, while this is undeniably a horrific way to go, the numbers are tiny in comparison to, say, the number of people killed by motor vehicles.
So why isn’t the government of Western Australia also destroying motor vehicles? Because people have collectively decided that this is a risk they’re prepared to take.
Well, people in Western Australia are saying the same thing about the sharks off their coastline. Please listen to them.

26 Nov

It’s A River Monsters Roundup, Featuring The Greenland Shark And Skate

It’s been a BIG week for fish in the news and we’re bringing you two incredible stories involving two rare beasts as seen on River Monsters: the skate and the Greenland shark!

It's a monster skate! (Photo Credit: Jeff Rotman/Getty Images)

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31 Oct

Jeremy Wade Wishes You a Creepy, Crawly, River-Monsters-Filled Halloween



BOO!  Here's a Halloween wish, straight from Jeremy Wade:

Creepies and crawlies and things of the deep

Are coming to get YOU when you go to sleep!

Happy Halloween!

You may want to check the closets, behind the shower curtain and under the bed before you tuck yourself in for the night ...


For More Creepy, Crawly River Monsters Videos, click below:

Screen Shot 2013-10-31 at 4.25.44 PM



Betty Chu is a Digital Media Executive Producer for Follow her on Twitter @beddychew or Facebook.


28 Oct

Sea Lion Stuns Unsuspecting Fisherman


We CANNOT stop laughing over this poor fisherman whose fish was stolen by a stealthy seal.

Yvan Mucharrz was posing with his catch along with Mike "The Griz" Ritz during filming of a fishing show in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. Apparently this seal has been seen frequently around the docks and locals have named him Pancho.

Mucharrz was standing close to the end of the boat posing for photos, when out of nowhere the seal jumped up and snagged the catch by its tail. The rest is history.

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12 Aug

Testicle-Biting, 'Ball-Cutter,' Pacu Fish Discovered in Scandinavian Waters


 The red-bellied pacu is related to the flesh-eating piranha. MORE PACU PHOTOS >>

Jeremy Wade has provided plenty fair warning in past River Monsters episodes of the dubbed "ball-cutter" pacu fish, making international headlines over the last few days. The testicle-biting pacu, a relative of the piranha and native to South American waters, was discovered by fisherman off the coast of Sweden in Oresund Sound.

Authorities are warning swimmers to keep their swimwear on — fishermen, after sustaining severing bites and losing their testicles, have reportedly bled to death.  This is the first sighting of this Amazon-native in European waters. A pacu was caught in Illinois waters last summer - get Jeremy Wade's expert insights on the fish.

The pacu can grow up to 3 feet in length and up to 55 pounds.  They mostly feed on fruits, nuts and small fish and are not typically a danger to people. However, human testicles are an ideal size and fit for the pacu mouth making it an easy target ... i.e. Gentleman, think twice before skinny dipping in Scandinavia!

Get more on the pacu, the "Nutcracker Fish," featured on River Monsters:


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13 May

River Monsters: When Lampreys Attack ... And, Suck Jeremy's Blood!


river monsters vampires of the deep

On the Canadian-U.S. border lies a vast and brooding lake that hides a dark history. For Native Americans, it’s an ancient and sacred site home to underwater spirits.  But recently, something has risen up from the murky depths to attack swimmers and stories abound of a nightmarish invasion of primordial bloodsuckers.

Tune in Sundays @ 9PM e/p for all-new episodes of RIVER MONSTERS.

In a journey that took him to the heart of a thundering waterfall in the Pacific Northwest, Jeremy Wade  embarked on a punishing mission to battle the most ancient river monster he’s ever encountered to reveal the true identity of the Vampires of the Deep.

How did he catch this monster? Watch the How to Catch a River Monster series and see for yourself: 


Lampreys are extremely fast, extremely aggressive ... and, out for blood. Watch as Jeremy tries to rip this bloodsucker off this neck! It's DISGUSTING.


Visit the RIVER MONSTERS site for more photos and videos >>

Betty Chu is a Digital Media Executive Producer for Follow her on Twitter @beddychew or Facebook for the cutest animal posts EVER.

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