The Secret Life of the Zoo

Series 4 Episode 2

Series 4 - Episode 2 Series 4 Episode 2

Fri 3 Aug 5:55pm - 6:55pm More4


The micro-dramas we see play out in the enclosures of Chester Zoo are enjoyable in their own right, but there's always a subtext. With each story of animal relationships and family tensions, there's the hint of a parallel with people - we can't help reading that into them, and the programme eggs us on. This time there's trouble among the mandrills (those magnificent monkeys with faces like voodoo masks).

Dominant male JC, who has fathered 29 young, is behaving sluggishly and facing a challenge from two younger males. He needs to “keep the boys in their place,” says a zookeeper. Though it turns out the root of the problem is a familiar one for middle-aged males…


Red panda Jung is losing weight and no one knows why. Mandrill Ludo gets over-friendly with his dad's girlfriend when his dad's at the vet's. Plus: tigers, and penguins.