How do lions generate such a powerful roar? ๐Ÿฆ | Big Animal Surgery – BBC

How do lions generate such a powerful roar? ๐Ÿฆ | Big Animal Surgery – BBC


To discover how lions produce
their roar, our team travelled to Gondwana
Game Reserve near Cape Town. Amongst the many wild animals found
here are several lions. And when they roar…
ROARS ..they can be heard as far
as eight kilometres away. Biologist Professor Craig Packer
is about to conduct an experiment that will help to unravel
exactly how the lion produces
such a powerful sound. His first task
is to locate the lions. What’s your strategy
for tracking them? Craig, we’ve got three adult lions
on the reserve. One adult male, two adult females,
and they’re all collared. Assisting Craig is Gondwana’s
Jono Berry. INTERFERENCE AND BEEPS OK, we’ve got a beautiful signal
on the male there. OK. So that’s the direction. Pull in here. Excellent. OK.
So there he is, on the road. After locating the lone male, Jono and Craig place
a loudspeaker on the ground… ..and retreat to the safety
of their vehicle. So, he’s the only male
in the reserve here? He’s the only adult male that we
have on the property at the moment. And he’s never been challenged.
No. He’s always been the big boss. So he’s a little overconfident. Using the speaker,
Craig is going to play a recording of another male lion’s roar. So this should be quite a shock
when we play him that roar. He’s going to get
the fright of his life. He’ll also capture
the lion’s response. I’m pretty sure he’s going to get up
to investigate and hopefully we’re going to get a loud roar
coming out of him as he walks along announcing, “This land is my land.
You get out of here.” OK, well, let’s give it a go. OK. Let’s go. ROAR On hearing the recording, the lion
immediately springs into action. ROARS He responds…
ROARS ..with some roars of his own… ROARS ..and sets off in search
of the intruder. With the help
of some specialist software, Craig analyses the roars
he’s just recorded. His data shows something
very interesting. The roars change frequency. What we have here is a roar element. It starts out very low frequency,
comes up higher and comes back down to the lowest frequency
at the very end. Up and down, up and down. So this is like taking one of these
little penny whistles here and… PLAYS DESCENDING NOTE ..lengthening the sound chamber,
lowering the pitch. This drop in frequency or pitch
is a clue to how lions produce their roar. So, physiologically
one of the striking things is that they have a special
sound-making apparatus. SERIES OF ROARS Recently it’s been discovered
that the larynx is attached to the ribcage at a much lower level
than other mammals. Like all mammals, a lion’s larynx
is controlled by several strips of muscle that connect it
to the ribcage. But while in other animals these
strap muscles are relatively short, in lions they are much longer. These strap muscles attach
to the human larynx up at our top rib. But for the lions and tigers, etc,
it’s down about the third
or fourth rib. This increased length is vital. It’s thought that when
a lion roars… ROARS ..its elongated strap muscles
enable the larynx to be pulled far down into the windpipe. And this extra distance
between the larynx and mouth… ..is what allows the lion’s
deep-throated roar to carry over such vast distances. There are several major lineages
of cats, and the one that includes the domestic cat, of course,
can meow but it can’t roar. There are cats from Latin America
that climb trees and again, they don’t roar. It’s only in the genus Panthera,
that includes the lion, the tiger, the jaguar and the leopard,
that is capable of roaring. An unmistakable trait
made possible by the evolutionary adaptation of the larynx.

39 thoughts on “How do lions generate such a powerful roar? ๐Ÿฆ | Big Animal Surgery – BBC

  1. The lions evolved their larynx just like we evolved our appendix, right~! Wait a minute we used to say that it was a vestigial appendage because of evolution. Robots believe in evolution too as do zombies.

  2. ฤฐ haven't watch video yet but if it is not like lion who shows up cartoons starting i will definitely sad.

  3. When you travel to Uganda to learn something when all you need to do is search it on google.๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚

  4. Narrator: โ€œroar can be heated 8km awayโ€
    Americans: โ€œhow much is that in football fields?โ€

  5. If you've ever been near a bellowing lion you know what a spine chilling experience it is. It literally vibrates in your chest. It's amazing!

  6. So…. they are going to play a lions roar that they already have a recording of… just to record a lions roar…

  7. I would never ever get in a car with no roof knowing there are lions around. I wouldn't get out of the car either. No thx

  8. I want to see what a lion voice box looks like but never have found any real pictures. Or any animal infact, disappointing :/

  9. Scientists have found out that the human larynx is fully capable of being able to sound like a lion, has the right shape and structure, but is missing one thing that's only present in babies: Fat.

  10. Makes you wonder if when people hear/see ghosts itโ€™s really just an alien scientist with a boom box and a penny whistle…

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