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Super Cute Animals

Gordon Buchanan goes to meet the world's cutest animals to reveal their hidden biology and find out why people have such a strong emotional response to them.

There are all sorts of incredible species of animal in the world, but there are a few that we think are special. We love them for their big eyes or furry faces but we also fall for the sounds they make and the way they move - who doesn't love a waddling penguin? These animals have become online celebrities, with millions of us finding and sharing videos every day - a tiny snoring hummingbird or a sneezing panda is just too cute not to share.

Gordon Buchanan has dedicated his life to filming wildlife. He wants to understand why we have such a strong emotional response to these particular species. Why a baby panda makes us go all gooey or why a squeaking frog got over 11 million internet hits. Travelling to meet these super cute animals, he reveals the surprising science behind each of the animals we love so much, starting with one of the most iconic animals on the planet, the giant panda. The panda's beautiful markings set it apart, but it's that big round oversized head that makes it so unusual. Although we find the teddy bear look incredibly appealing, for the panda, the size of its head tells the story of millions of years of evolution and survival.

Gordon also meets the fennec fox, with big ears that look sweet but are actually crucial to the fennec's survival out in the Sahara. He travels to Kenya to meet young elephants learning how to perfect their trunk skills and discovers the surprising secret behind a penguin's comic waddle. He hangs out with Eli, a five-year-old chimpanzee whose giggle can give us new information about our own evolution, and discovers just why snoring can help a tiny hummingbird conserve enough energy to make it through the night.

58 minutes

Last on

Sat 22 Feb 2020 11:00

Music Played

Timings (where shown) are from the start of the programme in hours and minutes

  • 00:00

    Lily Allen

    As Long As I Got You

  • 00:01

    George Ezra

    Cassy O'

  • 00:03

    Paloma Faith

    Ready For The Good Life

  • 00:07

    The The

    This is the day

  • 00:28

    George Ezra


  • 00:28

    George Ezra



Role Contributor
Presenter Gordon Buchanan
Producer Chloe Pearne
Director Chloe Pearne
Series Producer Sam Hodgson


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How strong is your cute response?

How strong is your cute response?

Test your cute response in our quiz designed to get your dopamine firing.

Super cute facts

Super cute facts

Fact files about the creatures featured in Super Cute Animals.