NATURAL WORLD: The Last Lions of India

BBC Two, 8pm
Audience: 2 million, 9.1% Audience Share

The Times - 18/10/2006, David Chater:
A new series of The Natural World is always welcome because it means that, at least once a week, there will be one programme filled with beauty and wonder. The first in the series features the ancient lions of western India, who came perilously close to extinction when, in 1901, the Nawab of Junagadh invited Lord Curzon to a hunt - only to discover that there were just 20 lions left. Rather than shooting them, he enforced a conservation order that allowed them to make a remarkable comeback.

These were the lions of Ancient Greece and the Bible -the lions that Androcles and Daniel faced -which are very different from their African cousins in both habit and appearance. They now live alongside the equally ancient Maldhari tribe, whose way of life has remained unchanged for centuries.

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