On T.V.


“I’m investigating one of science’s most neglected habitats: the city.
I’ll find as many wild animals as I can … and I don’t mean pigeons and possums.”
— Mireya Mayor

Video “Swamp Dinner” – Join Mireya as she ventures into the Louisiana bayou in the dead of night to catch whatever the swamp has to offer – and eat it!

Video ” Hunting City Hogs” – Mireya finally tracks down the elusive New Orleans urban hog in a residential neighborhood.

Rural forests and meadows aren’t the only places wildlife thrives. Our urban centers are filled with exotic animals in some of the most unlikely locations, often hidden from the casual observer. From back alleys to swamps, our major cities sometimes include resident giant snakes, large snails, boars armed with razor-sharp tusks, endangered sea turtles and unusual birds.

Premiering Monday, August 9, 2010, at 9 p.m. ET/PT on Nat Geo WILD, Wild Nights with Mireya Mayor explores the animal kingdom thriving in our “concrete jungles.” Primatologist and National Geographic Explorer Dr. Mireya Mayor has spent years traveling to exotic locations in search of rare species, but now turns her expertise to the hot spots of New Orleans, Miami and Rio de Janeiro. Armed with flashlights and night vision equipment, her challenge is to locate as many wild denizens as she can in a typical 24-hour period.

With the help of local experts and residents, Mireya tracks down creatures adapted to city life by trekking through urban swamps, lagoons, traffic-heavy streets, hidden passageways and shopping districts. Along the way Mireya discovers a surprisingly diverse range of animals, including giant Burmese pythons and feral hogs, in three iconic cities.

Premiere episodes include:

Wild Nights: New Orleans
Monday, August 9, 2010, at 9 PM ET/PT

We journey to the “Big Easy,” famous for streets packed with party fanatics, but they aren’t alone. Mireya’s on a treasure hunt to find as much wildlife as possible and even hopes to confirm a rumor about an unexpected urban invader—a feral hog. We’ll follow as she searches through parks, swamps and city streets to find New Orleans’s wildest animals—including large invasive rodents called nutria that have been devouring the New Orleans ecosystem. She goes on a late-night escapade with a city-hired hog-hunting squad to catch hogs in a central New Orleans park, and eats bayou food including frogs and bugs … local style! Mireya later meets up with Ken Brown and Claudia Riegel, from the City of New Orleans Termite Control Board, who give her an inside look at mammoth colonies threatening some New Orleans landmarks. And she explores a cemetery, where she discovers wildlife between the tombs and has an unsettling encounter with a large feral hog.

Wild Nights: Rio de Janeiro
Monday, August 16, 2010, at 9 PM ET/PT

Mireya travels to Rio de Janeiro, a city of more than 11 million people that sits on the edge of one of the world’s largest forests—home to many species of birds, amphibians, reptiles and mammals. In Rio, the wild and the urban are constantly overlapping. Mireya is astonished to find giant African snails that can grow to 8 inches in length in an upscale suburb. She later witnesses a face-off between the world’s largest rodent, the giant capybara, and a caiman crocodile. Mireya’s odyssey continues with a break to climb to Rio’s famous Cristo statue, where she finds a coati, a member of the raccoon family. And she checks out an urban lagoon to encounter the unpredictable Yacaré caiman, a toothy crocodilian that thrives on the outskirts of Rio.

Wild Nights: Miami
Monday, August 9, 2010, at 9 PM ET/PT

We take a trip to the backstreets of Miami, Mireya’s hometown, where the critters crawl from glamorous South Beach to neighborhood sandy beaches. She jumps in with bull sharks, wrestles an alligator twice her weight and straddles a giant sea turtle. For a change of pace, she turns her attention to helping control an unusual urban menace—hordes of chickens running amok in the streets. But things pick up when she tracks down a giant Burmese python, an invasive and formidable snake that has established itself in the Everglades and is slithering into Miami suburbs.

Come along with Mireya on an expedition into the city to find unusual animals seen in and around the concrete jungle!

For more information visit www.natgeowild.com.

Catch my new series: “WILD NIGHTS WITH MIREYA MAYOR”

Expedition Africa: The television event of the summer.

EXPEDITION AFRICA Benedict Allen, Mireya Mayor, Pasquale Scaturro, and Kevin Sites embark on the historical adventure of a lifetime through the wilds of Tanzania, using only a compass and basic maps. Twenty miles off the coast of eastern Africa, four modern-day explorers are sailing towards the unknown, the deep interior of Tanzania.  They’ll travel 970 miles through the most stunning, epic and unforgiving African terrain – fraught with danger. Using only a compass and b asic maps, they will attempt to experience the spirit of a remarkable adventure in world history. Their historic exploration has been captured by one of the premiere storytellers of our time, Mark Burnett, for the eight-part television event, EXPEDITION AFRICA: STANLEY & LIVINGSTONE, premiering on HISTORYTM on May 31, 2009 at 10pm/9c. http://www.history.com/expedition


INTO THE LOST WORLD. The film documents a 30-day trekking and climbing expedition to the northern “Prow” of Mt. Roraima, and a journey to the summit of Mt. Weiassipu in remote, trackless, and virtually unexplored jungles of southwestern Guyana. Making dangerous descents into sinkholes, Mireya Mayor together with D. B. Means and Jesus Rivas, collect frogs and plants, leading to the discovery of two species of frogs previously unknown new to science. All the while Mireya and colleagues document interesting natural history observations in this hidden corner of the world.  This Emmy nominated documentary premiered February 2004 as part of the National Geographic series “Ultimate Explorer” on MSNBC.


GIRL POWER Primatologist Mireya Mayor went in search of homosexual wild animals as part of a National Geographic Ultimate Explorer documentary about the female’s role in the mating game. This Emmy nominated film premiered July 2004 on MSNBC.



LOVE THOSE DOGS Wildlife correspondent Mireya Mayor explores doggie yoga and spas, goes on a beat with hardworking police dogs, and discusses the human/dog relationship. Mireya also goes undercover with hidden cameras to investigate and expose the dark side of the purebred puppy market.This film for National Geographic’s “Ultimate Explorer” series premieres February 2004 on MSNBC.



King Kong in My Pocket A Fulbright scholar and former Miami Dolphins cheerleader, Dr. Mireya Mayor received her first grant to study the rare brown-bearded saki and white- faced saki in the unexplored areas of Guyana in South America when she was 22. She’s also one of a handful of scientists to perform critical work on the highly endangered silky sifaka and Perrier’s sifaka, whose habits remain a mystery to biologists. Recently, Mayor and fellow researcher Ed Louis discovered a new species of mouse lemur that may be the smallest primate in the world.

Premiering June2003, on MSNBC, Ultimate Explorer’s “King Kong in my Pocket” takes viewers along on Mayor’s arduous journey deep into the Madagascar jungle during the monsoon season to document the find and help promote protection for the new species. http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2003/06/0626_030627_kingkong.html


DEVILS OF THE DEEP National Geographic Ultimate Explorer television correspondent Mireya Mayor recently followed Gilly and cameraman Bob Cranston on one of their expeditions to Guaymas, Mexico, for the documentary Devils of the Deep. Known as aggressive predators, Humboldt squid have powerful arms and tentacles, excellent underwater vision and a razor-sharp beak that easily tears through the flesh of their prey. In this film which premieres on MSNBC, July 2003, Mireya goes underwater at night with these mysterious creatures which can also rapidly change their skin color in what appears to be a complex communication system.



WILD VET: EXTREME CHALLENGE National Geographic Ultimate Explorer correspondent Mireya Mayor joins wild vet Ulf Tubbesing as he fights to save a leopard family suffering from a deadly brain disorder. Mayor also undertakes the dangerous task of capturing wildebeests, giraffes, and other animals to populate a new nature preserve. The story airs on Wild Vet: Extreme Challenge September 14, 2003 on MSNBC.



Gorilla Wild Even for an experienced primatologist, a face-to-face encounter with a 400-pound (181-kilogram) gorilla can be a bit unnerving. Ultimate Explorer correspondent Mireya Mayor, journeys to the Dzanga-Sangha protected area where researchers in the dense tropical forests of the Central African Republic are working to bring the two species together for ecotourism. Ensuring that the animals are worth more alive than dead may be their only shot at survival. Mayor profiled Chloe Cipolletta’s research for the National Geographic Ultimate Explorer television documentary Gorilla Wild.



Shark Sonics Ultimate Explorer wildlife expert Mireya Mayor goes diving with great white sharks to investigate Something strange off the coast of Baja California. Great white sharks are congregating in shallow water, and they’re not feeding on their usual prey of sea lions. Meanwhile, in the frigid waters of the Pacific Northwest, six-gill sharks have suddenly started hunting in shallow waters, terrorizing tourists at the popular Seattle Aquarium. What could be causing nature’s most feared predators to change their habits so suddenly? Mireya joins intrepid shark researcher and underwater filmmaker Bob Cranston and together they plunge the oceans’ depths for a fascinating look at the behavioral diversity of the shark family.


Lemur Rescue Primatologist Mireya Mayor searches for two of the rarest and most critically endangered sifaka lemurs in Madgascar. Leading an expedition into some of themost unexplored regions in Madagascar, Mireya captures Perrier’s sifaka and the Silky sifaka in order to conduct the first ever genetic studies of these wild creatures in her groundbreaking conservation studies. This was Mireya’s debut film on Explorer and aired on MSNBC.


Dangerous Creatures Mireya Mayor joins Luke Dollar the world’s foremost expert on Madagascar’s elusive and little-known predator the fossa as he races to trap and study this rare animal before its habitat disappears. At his side is his side is good friend, Mireya, a primatologist who, ironically, studies the fossa’s primary prey: sweet-faced, slow-moving lemurs. This episode for the series Out There premiered on the National Geographic Channel.


Cicadas Ultimate Explorer wildlife correspondent Mireya Mayor is there to explore the rare creature that is a Cicada. Cicadas, insects that spend most of their lives as nymphs, burrowed underground and sucking sap from tree roots-emerge once every 17 years. Living fast and dying young, the shrimp-size, red-eyed insects transform into adults, reproduce, and die, all the while buzzing to beat the band.


Wild Babies Wildlife correspondent Mireya Mayor hosts this adorable Mother’s Day tribute to wild moms and their irresistibly cute offspring on the National Geographic Channel.