Comparing nature’s biggest beasts

The elephants and giraffes at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo have helped Sir David Attenborough to unveil the secrets of the biggest dinosaur ever to walk the earth, in a brand new BBC One documentary being aired this Sunday (24 January, 6.30pm).

Komodo dragon with David Attenbrough at ZSL London Zoo

Attenborough and the Giant Dinosaur follows the fossil discovery and reconstruction of the largest known dinosaur – the giant titanosaur. Although the recently discovered species lived around 66 – 145 million years ago, the animals at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo have been able to give clues as to how a creature of that size and weight could live. 

Sir David Attenborough meets ZSL Whipsnade Zoo’s Assistant Curator of Elephants, Lee Sambrook, and the Zoo’s herd of Asian elephants, to discover more about the eating habits of very large animals, and how their bodies are adapted for walking, in spite of their size and weight.

The Zoo’s giraffes also make an appearance, as Sir David Attenborough and leading scientists, including bones expert Ben Garrod from ZSL’s Institute of Zoology, explore the benefits of the prehistoric creature’s long neck.

ZSL’s Zoological Director David Field said: “At ZSL Whipsnade Zoo we’re able to learn so much from the animals in our care that can be applied to our conservation projects around the world, but it’s fascinating to see how this knowledge can be applied to better understand prehistoric animals too.

“Later in 2016, our visitors will be able to investigate the similarities and differences between dinosaurs and today’s wildlife for themselves when ZSL Whipsnade Zoo launches its new Jurassic experience for the summer, which features life-size animatronic dinosaurs.”

Attenborough and the Giant Dinosaur will be broadcast on BBC One on Sunday 24 January at 6.30pm.


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