An elephant trumpets wildly, breaks a chain holding it to a tree, and flees to higher ground — just before a massive tsunami crashes ashore, drowning hundreds of thousands of people.
Did the elephant know the deadly wave was coming?
That’s the question explored by NATURE’s Can Animals Predict Disaster?
In interviews with scientists and eyewitnesses, NATURE probes the evidence that some animals may have senses that allow them to predict impending natural disasters long before we can.
Some creatures, for instance, may be able to “hear” infrasound, — sounds produced by natural phenomena, including earthquakes, volcanoes, and storms, that are inaudible to the human ear. This ability may give elephants and other animals enough time to react and flee to safety.
Another explanation may lie in animals’ sensitivities to electromagnetic field variations. Quantum geophysicist Motoji Ikeya has found that certain animals react to changes in electrical currents. He now regularly monitors a catfish, the most sensitive of the creatures he has tested, to aid him in warning others of coming disaster.
Follow NATURE as it reexamines ancient ideas about how animals can predict disaster which are now gaining credence in scientific circles.
Production Credits Print
Written and Produced by
Director of Photography
Location Sound Recordists
Stock Footage Research
BBC MOTION GALLERY
WGBH RESOURCE CENTER
WGBH MEDIA LIBRARY AND ARCHIVES
NHK (JAPAN BROADCASTING CORPORATION)
HEART PUNCH STUDIO
JULIE SCHAPIRO THORMAN
Executive In Charge
A Production of Optomen Productions, Inc. and Thirteen/WNET New York.
This program was produced by Thirteen/WNET New York, which is solely responsible for its content.
DANIEL B. GREENBERG
BRIAN PATRICK LEE
Thirteen Online is a production of Thirteen/WNET New York's Kravis Multimedia Education Center in New York City. Anthony Chapman, Director of Interactive & Broadband. Bob Adleman, Business Manager. Tamara E. Robinson, Vice President & Director, Programming