Shrew train

science

I've just watched this week's "The Life of Mammals". It's just not fair. I can lecture about animal behaviour until I'm blue in the face, and the students won't remember it. But I'll bet you a million pounds that they'll all remember the shrew train for the rest of their lives. To be fair, the quality of the filming is superb, and there's nothing like David emerging from the undergrowth somewhere to catch your attention (note to Mr. Attenborough - those bats are pretty much frozen solid, you know - you don't need to whisper). Of course, they occasionally gloss over the complexity, but they still manage to get across a lot of valuable information. The segment with the heat sensitive camera in the bat roost was particularly enlightening. Apart from anything else, it tells us that David should wear warmer trousers, or he'll catch his death of cold.

Cute animal award of the day: the shrew train elicited a lot of aahs, but the award goes to the elephant shrew (a Formula 1 rodent). I thought that the adult elephant shrew was the cutest thing I've ever seen until the baby turned up. I may be a scientist, but I'm not immune to the charms of cute fluffy things.

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