Wildlife filmmaker Gordon Buchanan got up close and personal with the huge predator in Arctic Norway, but escaped unharmed thanks to the safety of his perspex box.
Yahoo! News - The polar bear shows off his thick, dangerous teeth as he snaps at Gordon Buchanan (SWNS)
This is the dramatic moment a hungry polar bear eyed up a wildlife filmmaker as his next meal. Cameraman Gordon Buchanan had an up-close-and-personal encounter with the ferocious 1,000lb predator, but escaped unharmed thanks to his 'bombproof' perspex box. Brave Mr Buchanan endured 40 minutes of terror as the 8ft animal pounded the safety perspex box - the on-ice equivalent of a shark cage.
Mr Buchanan, who has filmed the world's deadliest creatures for 20 years, said the experience was the scariest thing that had ever happened to him. "I was terrified and you could hear my heartbeat on the mic. It really was a sensational moment and a worrying situation. "It shows how enormous and powerful they are. It is the most difficult thing I have done and the scariest. I’ve not been terrified for 40 minutes before."
Polar bear attacks are rare however when they do occur, results can be tragic for both parties. The female bear was driven mad by the sight of Mr Buchanan but the thick, clear perspex did not give way for the bear to find a meal for her two young cubs. Mr Buchanan said: "A lot of people think that carnivores are intrinsically dangerous but most aren’t - there’s a minimal risk and attacks are the exception. "But polar bears are different, without a doubt she wanted me for lunch. She was so persistent, looking for a weak spot for almost 45 minutes."
Brave Mr Buchanan endured 40 minutes of terror as the 8ft animal pounded the safety perspex box - the on-ice equivalent of a shark cage.
The terrifying encounter happened in Svalbard, in the northern-most region of Arctic Norway, for his three-part BBC series 'The Polar Bear Family and Me'. The cameraman followed the mother bear, Lyra, and her cubs Miki and Lica for twelve months for unprecedented access of the family's life. He risked long journeys over and through the ice, often into uncharted territory, battling freezing winds, violent storms and plummeting temperatures. On a number of occasions the crew had to flee on their snowmobiles as the giant predators edge closer and closer to them.
The polar bear looms over Gordon Buchanan's shoulder, like a still from a horror film (SWNS)
The perspex 'ice cube' Gordon was housed in for much of the filming was "pretty much bombproof". But there was a risk it could get brittle when very cold - making the task of filming the dangerous polar bears even more perilous. Gordon added: "There’s no doubt polar bear cubs are the cutest animals in the world and even the adults have an aesthetic which isn’t threatening. "But the polar bear is the animal I have the most respect for, it is the largest and strongest land carnivore. They are such inquisitive animals too. "The landscape is pretty featureless and it is amazing how they appear from nowhere. With most carnivores you can see their food source but you have to work really hard to find the animals polar bears feed on."
Source: Yahoo News