[River Monsters] Season 05/ Episode 01- FACE RIPPER [HD-1080p]


I’M JEREMY WADE — BIOLOGIST, EXTREME ANGLER,
MONSTER HUNTER. I’VE TRAVELED THE WORLD
TO SOLVE SEEMINGLY INEXPLICABLE
FRESHWATER DEATHS, UNCOVERING MONSTROUS CULPRITS
LURKING BELOW THE SURFACE. OHH! NOW I’M ON THE TRAIL OF THE MOST BRUTAL ATTACK
I’VE EVER HEARD OF. IT’S EXTREMELY GRUESOME. A MAN KILLED
WHEN SOMETHING IN THE WATER RIPPED OFF HIS FACE. TO TRACK DOWN THIS CULPRIT, I HAVE TO JOURNEY TO THE REMOTE
HEART OF SOUTH AMERICA… NEARLY THE WHOLE COUNTRY
IS BLANKETED IN RAINFOREST. …WHERE THE BATTLE
FOR SURVIVAL IS FIERCEST. I WAS EXPECTING TO GO IN THERE
AND INVESTIGATE A SKELETON, BUT THERE’S NOTHING LEFT. HAVE I WADED IN TOO DEEP? THIS COULD, IN FACT,
HAVE BEEN A MURDER. BUT ONCE I’M ON
THE TRAIL OF A RIVER MONSTER, THERE’S NO TURNING BACK. [ INDISTINCT SHOUTING ] — Captions by VITAC —
www.vitac.com CAPTIONS PAID FOR BY
DISCOVERY COMMUNICATIONS I’VE NOW BEEN TRAVELING
TO SOUTH AMERICA FOR 20 YEARS. AND WHENEVER I RETURN, I FIND NEW HORRORS
HIDING IN ITS WATERS. I RECENTLY CAME ACROSS A GRIM REPORT FROM
ONLY A YEAR AGO. A YOUNG MAN WAS SWIMMING ACROSS
A SOUTH AMERICAN RIVER. SUDDENLY,
HE STARTED STRUGGLING, AND THEN DISAPPEARED
BELOW THE SURFACE. [ MAN SHOUTS ] HE WAS ONLY UNDERWATER
FOR A MATTER OF MOMENTS BEFORE BEING PULLED OUT. BUT IT WAS ALREADY TOO LATE. HE WAS DEAD. BUT THIS WAS NO DROWNING, AS HE HAD
HIGHLY UNUSUAL INJURIES. ACCORDING TO THE REPORT, SOMETHING UNDER THE WATER
TORE HIS FACE OFF… WHILE LEAVING THE REST OF
HIS BODY UNTOUCHED. THE RIVER MONSTER
BEHIND THIS ATTACK SOUNDS TRULY TERRIFYING, BUT I DON’T HAVE MUCH TO GO ON. THE REPORT IS BRIEF
WITH BARELY ANY DETAIL. IN THIS INTERNET AGE,
WE’RE USED TO HAVING ALL THE INFORMATION WE WANT
AT OUR FINGERTIPS. THIS STORY, HOWEVER,
COMES FROM A PART OF THE WORLD BEYOND ITS REACH. WHEN YOU’RE DEALING WITH
AN INFORMATION BLACK HOLE, THE ONLY WAY OF DELVING DEEPER
IS TO GO THERE. ALL I KNOW IS THAT THE DEATH HAPPENED
ON THE RIO YATA, WHICH FLOWS THROUGH
NORTHERN BOLIVIA, A COUNTRY I’VE NEVER BEEN TO. THIS IS A VERY REMOTE REGION, PRACTICALLY CUT OFF FROM
THE REST OF BOLIVIA BY IMPENETRABLE FOREST. THE BEST WAY
FOR ME TO GET THERE IS TO FLY TO BRAZIL, THEN DRIVE THE PERILOUS ROADS TO THE RIVER THAT FORMS
THE BORDER. THIS IS A VERY POOR
AND DANGEROUS PART OF THE WORLD WHERE COCAINE SMUGGLING
TOUCHES EVERYTHING. IN THE NEAR ABSENCE OF ROADS, RIVERS ARE THE MAIN HIGHWAYS,
ESPECIALLY FOR ORGANIZED CRIME. THERE ARE
MILES AND MILES OF RIVER WHERE ANYBODY CAN SLIP ACROSS
UNNOTICED. AS SOON AS I CROSS OVER
INTO BOLIVIA, I START ASKING QUESTIONS… [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] …BUT NOBODY HAS HEARD ABOUT THE DEATH
I’M HERE TO INVESTIGATE. NO? NO. NO, SHE DOESN’T KNOW ANYTHING. HASN’T HEARD ANYTHING AT ALL. THE ONLY LEAD I CAN FOLLOW
IS THE RIVER ITSELF. THE RIO YATA
TWISTS AND TURNS FOR 650 MILES THROUGH DENSE JUNGLE, AND THE FATAL ATTACK HAPPENED
SOMEWHERE ALONG HERE. MY PLAN IS TO WORK MY WAY
ALONG THE RIVER STOPPING AT ANY SIGN
OF HABITATION ALONG ITS BANKS, ASKING QUESTIONS
AND SEEKING CLUES IN MY MISSION TO SOLVE
THIS MURDER MYSTERY. MY GUIDE IS LUIS — THE ONLY MOTORBOAT OWNER
I COULD FIND WHO’S WILLING TO TAKE ME
THROUGH THIS WILDERNESS. THIS RIVER HASN’T BEEN EXPLORED
BY SCIENTISTS. NOBODY REALLY KNOWS
WHAT’S DOWN THERE, SO IT COULD BE THE PERFECT PLACE FOR AN AS-YET-UNDISCOVERED
MONSTER TO BE LURKING. I NEED TO KEEP AN OPEN MIND
AS TO THE KILLER’S IDENTITY. I WANT TO GET MY LINE
INTO THE WATER AND START GATHERING LEADS…
NO MATTER HOW SMALL. SO FAR, I’VE NO LOCAL ADVICE
TO TAP INTO, BUT I KNOW THERE’S A TIGHT BEND
IN THE RIVER. IT’S A GOOD BET
FOR BEGINNING TO BRING IN WHATEVER LIVES HERE,
PREDATOR OR PREY. THE CHANCES ARE
THERE’S DEEPISH WATER DOWN HERE. THERE’S A FEW SNAGS
OF SUNKEN BRANCHES ON THE EDGE. IT’S THE KIND OF THING THAT MIGHT MAKE FISH
FEEL CONFIDENCE THAT THERE’S REFUGE NEARBY. ALSO, THE DEPTH OF WATER. THERE’S A GOOD CHANCE THAT THE KILLER I’M AFTER
IS A CARNIVOROUS PREDATOR, AS IT TORE OFF
THE VICTIM’S FACE, SO I’M USING A WHOLE FISH
FOR BAIT. BAIT IS A VERY PRECIOUS
COMMODITY. IT DOESN’T LAST VERY LONG
IN THIS HEAT. THERE’S A LOT OF HOPE
RESTING ON THIS FISH HERE. IT DOESN’T DISAPPOINT. IT LOOKS LIKE SOME KIND OF
FRESHWATER STINGRAY. I’LL TRY AND SLIDE IT
ONTO THE BEACH HERE. IT MAY NOT BE THE BIGGEST MONSTER
IN THE RIVER, BUT STINGRAYS ARE THE MOST
FEARED FISH IN SOUTH AMERICA. THEY’RE RESPONSIBLE FOR
COUNTLESS INJURIES EVERY YEAR. STAB-PROOF GLOVES
WILL PROTECT ME FROM ITS VENOMOUS, BARBED TAIL. THIS IS A CREATURE THAT IS POTENTIALLY
VERY DANGEROUS TO PEOPLE. IF YOU STEPPED ON IT AND THIS THING
STUCK IN YOUR LEG, IT’S VERY, VERY PAINFUL. BUT IF YOU DON’T TREAT
THE WOUND, THAT CAN BECOME SEPTIC, AND YOU KNOW,
THE WORST-CASE SCENARIO THERE IS ACTUALLY
FOR THAT TO GO GANGRENOUS. REMOVE THE LIMB — IF YOU DON’T DO THAT,
THAT’S FATAL, AS WELL. THE MAIN ONE IS ABOUT
FOUR INCHES LONG, AND THERE’S A SMALL ONE
COMING THROUGH UNDERNEATH. I THINK THE PRINCIPLE — IT’S A BIT LIKE
WHAT HAPPENS IN SHARKS WHEN THEIR TEETH FALL OUT. THEY’RE REPLACED BY OTHER ONES
COMING FROM BEHIND, AND I THINK WHEN THIS MAIN SPINE
FALLS OUT, GETS DAMAGED, THERE’S ANOTHER ONE
WAITING TO TAKE ITS PLACE. BUT AS DANGEROUS AS
ITS TAIL IS, THE STINGRAY DOESN’T HAVE THE HARDWARE TO TEAR
SOMEBODY’S FACE OFF. IT HASN’T REALLY GOT TEETH. WELL, IT HAS,
BUT THEY’RE SO CLOSE TOGETHER THAT IT FORMS ALMOST LIKE
A GRINDING PLATE. THERE’S A BIT OF ROUGHNESS
THERE. ALMOST LIKE TILES, BUT EACH TILE
IS SLIGHTLY POINTED. AND THE ACTUAL JAW
IS QUITE MUSCULAR. IT’S GOT
A GOOD CRUSHING FORCE THERE. WITHOUT THE WEAPONRY
TO RIP FLESH FROM BONE, THE RIVER STINGRAY
IS OFF MY SUSPECT LIST. BUT WHAT OTHER DEADLY CREATURES LIVE ALONGSIDE THE RAY
IN THESE MURKY WATERS? A FLAT-WHISKERED CATFISH. THIS HAS GOT TEETH, BUT,
I MEAN, THEY’RE NOT VERY BIG. THEY’RE VERY, VERY SMALL,
VERY CLOSE TOGETHER. THE EFFECT
IS MORE LIKE SANDPAPER, SOMETHING LIKE THAT. IT’S RASPY
AND QUITE ROUGH TO THE TOUCH. SO, THERE’S NO WAY
THAT THIS FISH COULD CAUSE THE TYPE OF INJURIES
THAT I’VE BEEN HEARING ABOUT. [ INDISTINCT SHOUTING ] BUT A NICE, PLUMP CATFISH
MIGHT WELL BE ON THE MENU FOR A BIGGER,
MORE VORACIOUS PREDATOR, WHICH COULD BE LURKING NEARBY. THEN, AFTER THE INITIAL
FLURRY OF ACTIVITY, IT ALL GOES QUIET. [ ENGINE REVS ] WE’VE NOT MADE IT
FAR ENOUGH ALONG THE RIVER TO REACH A VILLAGE IN DAYLIGHT. WE NEED TO FIND A SAFE PLACE
TO SET UP CAMP FOR THE NIGHT. [ GRUNTS ] LOOKS LIKE
SOMEONE’S BEEN HERE BEFORE. THAT’S GONNA BE PERFECT FOR
A HAMMOCK, I THINK. I’M TAKING EVERY OPPORTUNITY TO FIND OUT
WHAT PATROLS THESE WATERS. I’LL LEAVE
A COUPLE OF LINES OUT OVERNIGHT RIGHT NEXT TO MY HAMMOCK. ALTHOUGH MY FOCUS IS FIRMLY ON
THE DANGERS IN THE WATER, I ALSO HAVE TO BE WARY OF
WHAT COULD BE IN THE JUNGLE — NOT JUST ARMED DRUG-RUNNERS,
BUT THE WILDLIFE, AS WELL. JUST LOOKING AT THE BANK HERE,
AND I’M A LITTLE BIT WARY ‘CAUSE THERE’S SOME CAIMAN
FOOTPRINTS AND SLIDE MARKS. [ WATER SPLASHING ] SOMETHING JUST MOVED
OVER THERE. BLACK CAIMANS ARE SOUTH AMERICAN RELATIVES
OF THE ALLIGATOR. THEY CAN GROW
UP TO 19 FEET LONG AND HAVE NO PROBLEM
HUNTING IN THE DARK. SO FAR, THE RIO YATA
HASN’T GIVEN UP ANY CLUES TO THE FATE OF THE MAN WITH
A MISSING FACE. BUT LIKE ILLICIT GOODS,
NEWS TRAVELS FAST ALONG RIVERS, AND IF THE GRUESOME DEATH
HAPPENED ANYWHERE NEARBY, A LOCAL FISHERMAN WOULD
PROBABLY BE THE FIRST TO HEAR. SOMEBODY HERE
WHO LOOKS LIKE HE’S FISHING, SO I’M GONNA NIP IN
AND JUST HAVE A BIT OF A CHAT. NOW, SCIENTISTS MIGHT NOT KNOW
WHAT’S UNDER THE WATER HERE, BUT THE LOCALS TEND TO HAVE
A PRETTY GOOD IDEA. [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] MM-HMM. FIRST MEETINGS
CAN BE TENSE HERE. DRUG RUNNING IS COMMONPLACE, SO THE LOCALS
ARE WARY OF OUTSIDERS. OOH. HE SEEMS WILLING TO TALK, SO I ASK HIM ABOUT
THE GRISLY DEATH. NO CONOZCO. NO.
OKAY. HE SAYS HE DOESN’T KNOW
ANYTHING ABOUT THE ACCIDENT LAST YEAR. BUT HE HAS HEARD OF
ANOTHER FATALITY CAUSED BY A HUGE FISH. AAH! THERE’S ONE
THAT WILL ATTACK PEOPLE. SO, COULD THIS BE
THE FACE RIPPER? I’M IN REMOTE NORTHERN BOLIVIA, INVESTIGATING THE DEATH OF
A MAN WHO HAD HIS FACE TORN OFF BY SOMETHING LURKING
IN THE RIO YATA. I’M HERE TO FIND OUT
WHAT KIND OF CREATURE IS CAPABLE OF
SUCH A HORRIFIC ATTACK. [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] A SOLITARY FISHERMAN
MAY HAVE MY FIRST CLUE. I JUST SAID, “ARE THERE ANY
DANGEROUS FISH IN HERE?” HE SAYS, “YES, THERE’S ONE
THAT WILL ATTACK PEOPLE AND CAN DROWN THEM.” A CHILD
WAS RECENTLY KILLED BY ONE ALONG THE RIVER HERE. [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] TWO BOYS WENT DOWN
TO THE RIVER’S EDGE TO CHECK ON A LINE THAT HAD BEEN SET
THE NIGHT BEFORE. AS ONE OF THEM
PULLED IN THE LINE, HIS FEET
GOT TANGLED UP IN THE COILS. SUDDENLY,
THE LINE SNAPPED TIGHT… AAH!
…AS A HUGE FISH TOOK OFF. THE LITTLE BOY WAS NO MATCH
FOR THIS FISH’S STRENGTH, AND, JUST LIKE THE DEFACED MAN, THEY COULDN’T
GET HELP TO HIM IN TIME. THEY PULLED UP THE LINE,
SHOT THE FISH, AND WHEN THEY PULLED IT IN, THE MISSING LAD WAS ACTUALLY
IN ITS STOMACH. AAH! I’VE ASKED HIM TO DRAW IT BECAUSE LOCAL NAMES
ARE VERY CONFUSING. THEY DON’T OFTEN
TELL YOU VERY MUCH. IN THE ABSENCE OF
A SCIENTIFIC NAME, IN THE ABSENCE OF
THE ACTUAL BODY TO LOOK AT, A GOOD DESCRIPTION WITH
A DRAWING IS HOPEFULLY GONNA
TELL ME SOMETHING. NO SCALES. IT JUST HAS — IT JUST HAS SKIN. SO THAT MEANS IT’S PROBABLY
A CATFISH OF SOME SORT. BIG HEAD. [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] UH-HUH. AH! OKAY. OKAY. RIGHT. HE’S SAYING IT’S GOT
A BIG TENTACLE COMING OFF THE DORSAL FIN. NOW, THAT’S PRETTY MUCH
A GIVEAWAY. THAT SOUNDS LIKE — IF IT’S THE SIZE THAT
HE’S SAYING, AS WELL — THAT SOUNDS LIKE
IT’S A PIRAIBA. PIRAIBA! PIRAIBA!
HERE YOU GO! THIS STORY SOUNDS UNLIKELY, BUT I’VE LONG KNOWN
THAT PIRAIBA CAN BE LETHAL… THE REAL MONSTER OF THE AMAZON. …AFTER INVESTIGATING A STORY OF
A FISHERMAN SWALLOWED BY ONE. BUT DESPITE
THEIR SIZE AND POWER, THEY HAVE TINY TEETH
PACKED INTO ROUGH PADS. ALTHOUGH A BIG ONE
COULD SWALLOW A PERSON, THEY’RE NOT CAPABLE OF CLINICALLY REMOVING
SOMEBODY’S FACE. [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] BEFORE I CONTINUE ON MY WAY, THE FISHERMAN
IS QUICK TO REMIND ME THAT I MUST GO CAREFULLY. YEAH, HE’S SAYING, “YOU GOT TO BE CAREFUL
ON THIS RIVER.” HE SAID THERE’S LOTS OF THINGS
IN THIS WATER THAT CAN ATTACK YOU AND THAT ARE
POTENTIALLY DANGEROUS. I CONTINUE MY JOURNEY,
BEND BY SNAKING BEND, DOWN THE 650-MILE-LONG RIVER,
ON THE LOOKOUT FOR ANY CLUES, AND FISHING EVERY LIKELY SPOT,
DAY AND NIGHT. I ALSO TALK TO ANY VILLAGERS
OR FISHERMEN I COME ACROSS… BUENOS DíAS. …UNTIL FINALLY I MEET SOMEONE
WHO’S HEARD ABOUT THE DEATH. [ BOTH SPEAKING SPANISH ] WELL, I’M GOING IN
THE RIGHT DIRECTION. HE SAYS
IT’S DOWNSTREAM FROM HERE, BUT HE SAYS
IT’S QUITE A WAY. [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] HE TELLS ME A BIT MORE DETAIL
ABOUT THE DEATH. [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] WHAT HE HEARD WAS THAT
JUST BONE WAS LEFT. EVERYTHING ELSE WAS EATEN. ANOTHER
FAIRLY GRUESOME DETAIL IN ADDITION TO
WHAT I’VE HEARD ALREADY. THIS IS A SIGNIFICANT
PIECE OF INFORMATION. WHATEVER ATTACKED THE MAN DIDN’T JUST
MAKE A GRAB FOR HIS HEAD. IT SOUNDS LIKE
IT WAS ACTUALLY FEEDING ON HIM. I’VE BEEN TRAVELING THE RIVER
FOR THREE DAYS NOW, AND I HAVEN’T CAUGHT ANYTHING
CAPABLE OF DOING THAT KIND OF DAMAGE. BUT ALL THAT
COULD BE ABOUT TO CHANGE. WHAT’S THIS? WHAT’S THIS? I’M DEEP IN THE REMOTE JUNGLES
OF BOLIVIA… INVESTIGATING
THE DEATH OF A MAN WHO HAD HIS FACE BITTEN OFF
BY SOMETHING IN THE WATER. WELL. OOH.
WHAT’S THIS? WHAT’S THIS? OOH! BUT SO FAR,
I HAVEN’T CAUGHT ANYTHING WITH THE TEETH TO DO THE JOB. HERE WE GO.
HERE WE GO. A RED-BELLIED PIRANHA. [ PIRANHA CRUNCHING ] AH, THERE’S A VERY AUDIBLE
CRUNCH GOING ON THERE. THIS IS THE MOST NOTORIOUS
OF THE PIRANHAS. IT’S GOT VERY SHARP TEETH, WHICH INTERLOCK
A BIT LIKE SCISSOR BLADES, AND LOOKING AT THIS ONE,
WHAT’S VERY CHARACTERISTIC, IT’S GOT A VERY SOLID,
BROAD HEAD, AND WHAT THIS
LARGELY MEANS IS THERE’S A LOT OF MUSCULATURE
UNDER THE GILLS THERE IN SORT OF THE CHEEK REGION
BEHIND THE EYE. THAT’S THE FORCE BEHIND
THESE CUTTING BLADES. THEY MAY HAVE THE HARDWARE, BUT AFTER 20 YEARS
OF FISHING IN SOUTH AMERICA, I’VE COME TO THE CONCLUSION
THAT MOST OF THE TIME, THEIR BLOODTHIRSTY REPUTATION ISN’T MUCH MORE THAN
HOLLYWOOD HYPE. TO PROVE IT, I’VE JUMPED
INTO PIRANHA-INFESTED RIVERS. I’VE EVEN
SAT IN A POOL FULL OF THEM WITHOUT GETTING
SO MUCH AS A NIP. THESE PIRANHAS WERE TEARING INTO
A PIECE OF DEAD MEAT JUST A COUPLE OF MINUTES AGO, BUT THEY’RE JUST
NOT INTERESTED IN ME. AND DEAD MEAT IS THE CLUE. FEW AQUATIC HUNTERS WOULD TURN DOWN AN EASY MEAL
OF A DEAD ANIMAL. AND WHEN I INVESTIGATED THE STORY OF
A WHOLE BUS FULL OF PEOPLE REPORTEDLY
EATEN ALIVE BY PIRANHAS… [ INDISTINCT SHOUTING ] …IT TURNED OUT
THAT THE WOUNDS WERE INFLICTED AFTER THEY HAD DROWNED. I’VE NOT HEARD AS YET
A CONFIRMED REPORT OF THESE ACTUALLY KILLING
A HEALTHY ADULT. SO PIRANHAS
AREN’T ON MY SUSPECT LIST. BUT SOMEWHERE IN THIS RIVER,
THERE’S A FRESHWATER KILLER, AND I’M DETERMINED TO FIND IT. WITH MY GUIDE, LUIS,
I TRAVEL FURTHER DOWN THE RIVER WITHOUT SEEING
ANY SIGN OF HUMAN HABITATION UNTIL WE FINALLY COME ACROSS
A SMALL VILLAGE. I STILL DON’T KNOW
WHERE THE ATTACK TOOK PLACE OR EVEN THE VICTIM’S NAME, SO I’M HOPING SOMEBODY HERE CAN START FILLING IN
THE BLANKS. [ CLAPS HANDS ]
SEÑOR, SEÑORA. DOESN’T LOOK LIKE
THERE’S ANYONE AT HOME HERE. [ ROOSTER CALLS IN DISTANCE ] THE FIRST FEW PEOPLE
I SPEAK WITH KNOW NOTHING… OKAY, OKAY. …BUT MY PERSISTENCE PAYS OFF. ¿USTED SABE ALGO? Sí. [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] Sí. [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] I’VE GOT A NAME AND A PLACE. THE MAN’S NAME IS OSCAR —
OSCAR BARBOSA. [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] IT WAS ON THE RIVER HERE. A VILLAGE CALLED
SANTA TERESITA. Sí. AND THAT’S ABOUT
A DAY AWAY FROM HERE TRAVELING ON THE RIVER. GRACIAS.
OKAY. I’M FINALLY ON THE RIGHT TRACK. I’VE BEEN TOLD THAT
THE VILLAGE I’M LOOKING FOR IS AT A FERRY CROSSING. SO, I THINK THIS IS IT. I THINK THIS IS THE PLACE
WHERE IT HAPPENED. THIS IS THE PLACE WHERE
I’M GETTING OFF THE BOAT. THIS IS THE VILLAGE
WHERE OSCAR DIED, AND IF I’M GONNA GET ANSWERS
ANYWHERE, IT’S GONNA BE HERE. BUT VERY QUICKLY, I DISCOVER THAT SANTA TERESITA
IS PRACTICALLY ABANDONED. THERE’S VERY LITTLE EMPLOYMENT
IN THESE REMOTE VILLAGES, AND MANY PEOPLE HAVE TO LEAVE
FOR WEEKS AT A TIME TO FOLLOW SEASONAL WORK. I FIND A FEW PEOPLE LEFT
WHO HAVE HEARD OF THE ATTACK, BUT THEY WEREN’T IN THE VILLAGE
AT THE TIME AND SEEM
RELUCTANT TO TALK ABOUT IT. I’M HAVING TROUBLE FINDING ANYBODY WHO SAW
WHAT HAPPENED. THERE’S ACTUALLY
VERY FEW PEOPLE AROUND. THERE’S LOTS OF HOUSES, BUT A LOT OF THEM
SEEM TO BE EMPTY. I’M JUST THINKING IF IT HAPPENED
ON A DAY LIKE TODAY, THERE WOULDN’T REALLY BE MANY
PEOPLE AROUND TO WITNESS IT. BUT WHAT I HAVE HEARD SECONDHAND
IS THAT APPARENTLY, OSCAR WASN’T FROM HERE. HE WAS ON HIS WAY THROUGH. THEY SAY HE CAME FROM A TOWN
CALLED GUAYARAMERíN. I’M TOLD THAT ONE MINUTE,
HE WAS ON THE FERRY BOAT AND THE NEXT, THEY WERE DRAGGING HIS BODY
FROM THE WATER. THERE’S A VILLAGER WHO SAW
THE WHOLE THING AND RECOVERED HIS BODY,
BUT HE’S NOT HERE NOW, AND THEY DON’T KNOW
WHEN HE’LL BE BACK. [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] OKAY.
GRACIAS. GRACIAS. HE SAYS IF I WANT TO KNOW MORE,
PERHAPS I SHOULD TRY TO FIND OSCAR’S FAMILY
IN GUAYARAMERíN. SO, THE ONLY WAY
TO PUSH MY INVESTIGATION ON IS TO LEAVE BEHIND THE ATTACK SITE
I’VE ONLY JUST DISCOVERED AND HEAD FOR THE TOWN. BUT I DON’T HAVE MUCH CHOICE IF I WANT TO GET
TO THE BOTTOM OF THIS CASE. I NOW HAVE A NAME TO GO ON. AND WHEN I GET INTO TOWN,
I TRACK DOWN A MAN NAMED JUAN, A RELATIVE OF OSCAR’S MOTHER,
WHO TAKES ME TO HER HOUSE. THIS IS A SENSITIVE SITUATION. SHE LOST HER SON
ONLY 12 MONTHS AGO. MM-HMM. [ SCRAPES FEET ] I DON’T WANT TO INTRUDE, SO I DECIDE
TO LEAVE THE CAMERA OUTSIDE. BUT I’VE HIT A BRICK WALL. SHE’S REFUSING
TO TALK ABOUT OSCAR’S DEATH. [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] OUTSIDE, JUAN EXPLAINS THAT IT MIGHT NOT
ALL BE DOWN TO GRIEF. OBVIOUSLY,
PART OF THIS IS THE FACT THAT SHE’S STILL
VERY UPSET BY THIS, BUT HE’S ALSO SAYING
THAT HE’S HEARD THAT SOME PEOPLE HAVE BEEN
GETTING TO HER IN SOME WAY, SAYING THAT SHE’S NOT TO TALK
ABOUT THIS TO OTHER PEOPLE, SO, YOU KNOW,
THERE’S SOMETHING — [ SIGHS ] SOMETHING GOING ON HERE. SOMETHING’S NOT QUITE RIGHT. [ DOG BARKING ] FROM PAST EXPERIENCE,
I’VE FOUND THAT PEOPLE
ARE NORMALLY GRATEFUL FOR ANY ATTEMPT TO MAKE SENSE
OF THE DEATH OF A LOVED ONE. THIS REACTION MAKES ME SUSPECT THAT SOMETHING ELSE
COULD BE GOING ON. [ HORN HONKS ] JUAN POINTS ME IN THE DIRECTION OF A LOCAL JOURNALIST
NAMED DORIAN, WHO REPORTED ON OSCAR’S DEATH
AT THE TIME. I’M HOPING
HE CAN HELP ME WITH SOME DETAILS
SURROUNDING THE CASE. [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] IT SOUNDS LIKE
HE HIT A NUMBER OF DEAD ENDS WHEN REPORTING THIS CASE. HE HAD
A NAME OF A POLICE OFFICER WHO WAS SUPPOSEDLY INVESTIGATED. THIS PERSON TURNED OUT
NOT TO EXIST. THERE WAS
NO POLICE INVESTIGATION, NO REPORT THERE. AND, ALSO, THE BODY WAS BURIED
WITHIN 24 HOURS, VERY QUICKLY, CONSIDERING
THAT SOME OF THE FAMILY MEMBERS HAD SUSPICIONS THAT THIS WASN’T
A STRAIGHTFORWARD ACCIDENT, THAT THIS COULD, IN FACT,
HAVE BEEN A MURDER. BUT I’M NOT
A HOMICIDE DETECTIVE, AND I’M BEGINNING TO WONDER
IF I’VE WADED IN TOO FAR. I’M IN BOLIVIA, INVESTIGATING
THE BRUTAL SLAYING OF A MAN IN THE REMOTE RIO YATA. SO FAR, I’VE BEEN WORKING ON
THE ASSUMPTION THAT IT WAS SOMETHING
IN THE WATER THAT DID IT, BUT I’VE JUST FOUND OUT THAT ALL MIGHT NOT BE
WHAT IT SEEMS. Wade: SOME OF THE FAMILY MEMBERS
HAD SUSPICIONS THAT THIS COULD, IN FACT,
HAVE BEEN A MURDER. [ VEHICLES ZOOMING ] THIS REGION OF BOLIVIA IS NOTORIOUS FOR
DRUG-RUNNING GANGS. I’VE HEARD BEFORE OF CRIMINALS
TAKING BODIES TO THE RIVER TO COVER UP
EVIDENCE OF A MURDER OR THE IDENTITY OF A VICTIM, USING THE RIVER’S SCAVENGERS
TO STRIP FLESH FROM BONE. WAS OSCAR LITERALLY DEFACED? [ HORN HONKS ] IF HIS DEATH IS CONNECTED TO
ORGANIZED CRIME, THEN THE FACT THAT
I’M DIGGING UP DETAILS OF A MURDER
COULD THREATEN MY SAFETY. I’M BEGINNING TO WONDER WHETHER IT’S TOO DANGEROUS
FOR ME TO CONTINUE MY QUEST. [ HORN HONKS ] THE NEXT MORNING, I DECIDE I’VE COME TOO FAR
TO GIVE UP NOW. I HAVE TO PUSH ON
TO FIND THE TRUTH. JUAN TOLD ME OSCAR’S BODY
WAS TAKEN TO THE MORGUE, BUT JUST AS I GEAR MYSELF UP
TO HEAD DOWNTOWN, I’M STOPPED IN MY TRACKS. OVERNIGHT, GUAYARAMERíN
HAS TURNED INTO A GHOST TOWN. THIS ISN’T MAKING
A LOT OF SENSE. I’M VERY ANXIOUS
TO BE GETTING OUT, TALKING TO PEOPLE,
FIND OUT IF THIS REALLY IS A CASE OF HUMAN FOUL PLAY,
OF MURDER. BUT THIS IS — IT’S WEIRD. IT’S NOT SUNDAY.
THIS IS THE MIDDLE OF THE WEEK. IT’S 10:25.
THERE’S NOBODY ON THE STREET. WELL, I SAY NOBODY —
THERE’S MILITARY POLICE. THAT’S ALL.
I CAN’T GO ANYWHERE. THE SOLDIERS ON THE CORNER
HAVE SPOTTED ME, AND I FIND MYSELF IN FRONT OF
THE CHIEF OF POLICE. [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] HE TELLS ME THAT EVERYBODY
IN THE WHOLE COUNTRY IS UNDER ARMED CURFEW SO THAT THE GOVERNMENT CAN
KEEP TRACK OF ALL ITS CITIZENS. EVERYBODY HAS TO STAY
IN THEIR HOUSES FOR 24 HOURS. THEY CAN’T GO ANYWHERE, AND EVEN THOUGH I DON’T
LIVE HERE, THAT INCLUDES ME. I’VE GOT TO STAY INSIDE. IF I DON’T
GET OFF THE STREETS NOW, I COULD BE ARRESTED. I’VE GOT NO CHOICE BUT
TO SIT IT OUT FOR ANOTHER DAY. [ HORN HONKS ] THE NEXT MORNING,
I CONTINUE MY INVESTIGATION. I HEAD TO THE HOSPITAL TO SEE IF ANYONE KNOWS
HOW OSCAR MET HIS GRUESOME END. I FIND DR. NAVARRO, THE MAN WHO SIGNED
OSCAR’S DEATH CERTIFICATE. [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] THE FIRST THING HE DOES IS PULL OUT
A PHOTO OF OSCAR’S INJURIES. THIS IS NOT
THE KIND OF PICTURE I’D WANT TO SHOW AROUND,
REALLY. THIS IS THE EVIDENCE. IT’S PURELY THE FACE,
IT’S EXTREMELY GRUESOME, AND HE’S NEVER SEEN THAT BEFORE WHERE IT’S BEEN SUCH A LOCALIZED
ATTACK — LOCALIZED INJURY. IT IS REALLY VERY HORRIFIC. BUT DID THESE INJURIES
KILL OSCAR, OR ARE THEY COVERING UP EVIDENCE OF
A STABBING OR SHOOTING? [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] DR. NAVARRO SAYS THERE WAS NO EVIDENCE
OF MURDER. OSCAR WAS DEFINITELY
ATTACKED AND KILLED BY SOMETHING IN THE WATER. SO HOW DID OSCAR DIE? PROFUSA. AND THE CAUSE WAS BLOOD LOSS. ONCE ANYTHING ATTACKING
GETS BEYOND THE SOFT TISSUE, ALL IT’S GOT TO DO IS PUNCTURE
ONE OF THESE ARTERIES, AND WHAT WITH THE PRESSURE OF
THE BLOOD BEHIND IT, SOMEBODY COULD ACTUALLY
BLEED TO DEATH IN A VERY SHORT TIME. FROM THE BITE MARKS
LEFT ON OSCAR’S HEAD, DR. NAVARRO IS IN NO DOUBT
AS TO WHAT DID THIS. PIRAÑAS. PIRANHA? PIRAÑA. PIRANHAS. FOR YEARS, IT’S BEEN
AN ARTICLE OF FAITH FOR ME THAT, DESPITE THE HYPE, PIRANHAS
DON’T NORMALLY KILL PEOPLE. DR. NAVARRO’S FINDINGS POTENTIALLY THROW THIS
INTO QUESTION. THIS IS THE FIRST TIME
I’VE SEEN SUCH GRAPHIC,
GRUESOME MEDICAL EVIDENCE OF SOMEBODY BEING KILLED
BY PIRANHAS. IS IT POSSIBLE TO SAY
WHICH TYPE MAYBE WAS INVOLVED? [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] HE IS SAYING THAT
THERE’S NO REAL WAY AFTER THE EVENT THAT YOU CAN TELL
WHICH TYPE IS RESPONSIBLE. THEY’RE ALL VERY VORACIOUS, BUT POINTING THE FINGER
CANNOT BE DONE. THERE ARE NEARLY
40 KNOWN SPECIES OF TRUE PIRANHA IN THE WORLD, SOME MORE AGGRESSIVE
THAN OTHERS. BUT NONE, IN MY EXPERIENCE,
WOULD NORMALLY DO THIS. THAT MAKES ME THINK THAT ONE OF TWO THINGS
MIGHT HAVE HAPPENED. EITHER SOMETHING HAS CHANGED THE WAY
THE PIRANHAS BEHAVE HERE OR THE REMOTE RIO YATA
IS HOME TO A NEW, ULTRA-AGGRESSIVE
SPECIES OF PIRANHA THAT I’VE NEVER SEEN BEFORE. THERE’S ONLY ONE WAY
TO FIND OUT — GET BACK TO SANTA TERESITA
AND GET A LINE IN THE WATER. I’M TOLD THAT JUST DOWNSTREAM
FROM WHERE OSCAR DIED, THERE’S A SERIES OF RAPIDS
WHERE LOCALS CATCH VARIOUS DIFFERENT TYPES
OF PIRANHA. MAYBE THIS IS WHERE I’LL FIND
THE MAN KILLER. SO FAR, I’VE BEEN CATCHING
A VARIETY OF FISH, BUT WHAT I’M GONNA DO NOW
IS SPECIFICALLY TARGET PIRANHAS, SO I’M GONNA START OFF, I THINK,
USING AN ARTIFICIAL BAIT, SOMETHING WHICH MIMICS
A SMALL FISH AND THAT SORT OF CALLS ATTENTION
TO ITSELF IN THE WATER, AND, BECAUSE
ANYTHING THAT GOES FOR THAT IS LIKELY TO HAVE TEETH,
THEN I’VE GOT ABOUT 10 INCHES OF WIRE
ON THE END THERE, OTHERWISE,
THEY JUST BITE THROUGH THE LINE. MY LOCATION IS A HALF-BUILT,
ABANDONED HYDROELECTRIC DAM. THERE’S A REALLY NICE SLACK
ON THE EDGE OF THE RAPID HERE. CLASSIC
PREDATOR AMBUSH TERRITORY. LOTS OF WHITE MARKS
ALL OVER THE ROCKS HERE, SO THE CORMORANTS
HAVE BEEN FINDING FISH. I THINK
IT ALL LOOKS PRETTY GOOD. BUT BEFORE I START FISHING, SOMETHING UNUSUAL
CATCHES MY EYE. HUNDREDS OF TINY FISH ARE MAKING THEIR WAY
OVER THE MAN-MADE RAPIDS. THIS IS WATER
THAT WOULD JUST SWEEP ME AWAY, AND HERE,
YOU’VE GOT THESE CREATURES, MOSTLY ABOUT AN INCH LONG — SOME OF THEM
ARE TWO OR THREE INCHES — MAKING THEIR WAY UP
AGAINST THE CURRENT. A BITE-SIZED SNACK
FOR ANY PIRANHA. ALL RIGHT, THAT’S SOME OF THE EASIEST FISHING
I’VE HAD FOR A LITTLE WHILE. OH, WHOA! ONLY FAST, POWERFUL FISH
CAN SURVIVE IN THESE RAPIDS. WHOA. SOMETHING HAS IT. RIGHT. WHAT’S THAT? THIS IS SOMETHING.
THIS IS SOMETHING. A VAMPIRE FISH — A SABER-TOOTHED, DISTANT
RELATION OF THE PIRANHA. SOME VAMPIRE FISH
GROW UP TO FOUR FEET LONG. THEIR DAGGER-SHARP FANGS
ARE TAILOR-MADE FOR IMPALING OTHER FISH
IN LIGHTNING-FAST ATTACKS. I’VE EVEN SEEN THEM BITE OFF
MORE THAN THEY CAN CHEW IN CANNIBALISTIC ASSAULTS
ON THEIR OWN KIND. IT’S GOT ANOTHER ONE
DOWN ITS THROAT. ALTHOUGH IT’S GOT
TERRIFYING DENTAL HARDWARE, THESE TEETH
CAN’T STRIP FLESH FROM BONE IN THE WAY THAT OSCAR’S
ATTACKER WAS ABLE TO DO. BUT ANYTHING THAT CAN
SHARE THE WATER WITH THESE MUST BE AN IMPRESSIVE PREDATOR
IN ITS OWN RIGHT. I JUST SAW A FLASH —
SOMETHING GOING FOR IT. HEY, THAT’S A FISH. THAT’S A RED PIRANHA. NOT GONNA TAKE ANY CHANCES. I DON’T WANT MY FINGERS
TOO CLOSE TO THE TEETH. BUT NOTHING CAN PREPARE YOU FOR
THE UNEXPECTED. AAH! FIND OUT RIGHT AFTER THIS. THE ANSWER IS COMMUNICATION. THEY VIBRATE THEM TO MAKE TWO DIFFERENT SOUNDS
FOR WARNING OFF RIVALS. [ PIRANHA GRUNTS ] I’M IN NORTHERN BOLIVIA,
WHERE A DOCTOR HAS CONFIRMED THAT PIRANHAS
ATTACKED AND KILLED A YOUNG MAN LAST YEAR. PIRAÑAS. FOR 20 YEARS, I’VE BELIEVED THAT PIRANHAS
WON’T NORMALLY ATTACK HEALTHY,
LIVING HUMANS IN A RIVER. THIS IS THE FIRST TIME
I’VE EVER COME ACROSS MEDICAL PROOF OF IT HAPPENING. COULD SOME TYPE OF
ULTRA-AGGRESSIVE PIRANHA IN THESE REMOTE JUNGLES
BE THE CULPRIT FOR THE MOST GRUESOME DEATH
I’VE EVER INVESTIGATED? HEY, THAT’S A FISH! I’M TRYING
TO REEL IN THE EVIDENCE WHEN A SEARING PAIN
SHOOTS THROUGH MY HAND. OW! [ BLEEP ] I’VE JUST IMPALED MYSELF
ON A TREBLE THERE. THAT HOOK HAS GONE
RIGHT IN MY THUMB. I’VE GOT TO DEAL WITH THAT. AS THE RED-BELLIED PIRANHA
STRUGGLES, THE HOOK
DIGS DEEPER INTO MY THUMB. IT’S THE FIRST TIME
I’VE ACTUALLY DONE THAT, BUT I HAVE SEEN IT HAPPEN
TO SOMEBODY ELSE, AND WE HAD TO GIVE THEM
HALF A BOTTLE OF WHISKEY AND THEN HOLD HIM DOWN
ON A TABLE TO PULL IT OUT. I CAN’T PULL THE HOOK
STRAIGHT OUT BECAUSE
THE BACKWARDS-FACING BARB IS DUG RIGHT INTO MY FLESH. CAN YOU JUST HOLD THE LURE
LIKE THAT WHERE MY FINGERS ARE? WHILE THE SOUND MAN TAKES THE WEIGHT OF THE FISH
OFF MY THUMB, I GET TO WORK WITH SOME PLIERS. [ GRUNTS ] THAT HURT. JUST LETTING THAT BLEED BECAUSE THERE’S PROBABLY
FISH SLIME AND ALL SORTS IN THE WOUND. I’M JUST WONDERING IF A LITTLE
BIT OF HUMAN BLOOD ON THIS MIGHT BE
THAT EXTRA LITTLE SOMETHING. ALL PIRANHA SPECIES HAVE AN EXTREMELY ACUTE
SENSE OF SMELL. IT’S THOUGHT
THEY’RE ABLE TO DETECT A SINGLE DROP OF BLOOD
IN 50 GALLONS OF WATER. WILL MY BLOOD ATTRACT SOMETHING
DIFFERENT ONTO THE LINE? THAT’S INTERESTING.
THAT IS DIFFERENT. THAT IS DIFFERENT. THIS ISN’T
A RED-BELLIED PIRANHA. THIS IS A BLACK PIRANHA. COMPARED TO THE RED-BELLY, THESE ARE
COMPARATIVELY SOLITARY, COMPARATIVELY SHY, BUT — WELL, YOU SAY SHY. JUST LOOK AT THE SIZE OF
THE LURE THAT THAT WENT FOR — ABOUT THE SAME LENGTH
AS THE FISH ITSELF. THESE ARE THE LARGEST OF
THE CARNIVOROUS PIRANHAS. THEY’RE RECOGNIZED AS HAVING THE STRONGEST BITE
POUND-FOR-POUND OF ANY FISH
THAT’S BEEN MEASURED. BUT THESE ARE SOLITARY FISH
AND DON’T HUNT IN PACKS… SO I DON’T SEE HOW
ONE BLACK PIRANHA COULD OVERWHELM OSCAR
AND BITE OFF HIS ENTIRE FACE. THIS ISN’T THE MYSTERY PIRANHA
I’M AFTER. AFTER THIS, THE PIRANHAS START COMING
THICK AND FAST. REVISED TECHNIQUE OF UNHOOKING. THE RIVER IS TEEMING WITH THEM, BUT I HAVEN’T UNCOVERED
ANYTHING OUT OF THE ORDINARY. I’M NOT FINDING ANY EVIDENCE OF A NEW ULTRA-AGGRESSIVE
SPECIES OF PIRANHA IN THE RIO YATA. [ WATER SPLASHES ] TRACKING DOWN
THE PIECES OF THIS PUZZLE IS PROVING
HARDER THAN I EXPECTED. AND I STILL DON’T HAVE ENOUGH
TO BUILD A CLEAR PICTURE OF WHAT REALLY HAPPENED WHEN OSCAR BARBOSA WENT INTO
THE WATER ON THAT FATEFUL DAY. I’M NOT FINDING
THE MYSTERY FISH I’M AFTER, AND I HAVEN’T HEARD ABOUT
ANY MORE PIRANHA ATTACKS HERE SINCE I ARRIVED. BUT THERE’S ANOTHER PLACE
FURTHER NORTH WHERE APPARENTLY, THERE’S BEEN A RECENT SPATE
OF PIRANHA ATTACKS. [ INDISTINCT SHOUTING ] I NEED TO INVESTIGATE WHETHER SOME KIND OF
NEW ULTRA-AGGRESSIVE PIRANHA COULD BE BEHIND THESE ATTACKS,
AS WELL… OR WHETHER SOMETHING ELSE
IS GOING ON TO EXPLAIN WHY PIRANHAS ARE SUDDENLY LIVING UP TO
THEIR B-MOVIE REPUTATION AND TURNING ON HUMANS. I’LL GO TO ANY LENGTHS TO UNRAVEL A MYSTERY
THAT REWRITES THE RULES, SO I’M TRAVELING TO THE SITE OF
THE ATTACKS — SURINAME, ON THE NORTHERN COAST
OF THE CONTINENT. IT’S THE SMALLEST
INDEPENDENT COUNTRY IN SOUTH AMERICA. ONCE A DUTCH COLONY,
IT WAS ESTABLISHED ON THE LABOR OF AFRICAN SLAVES. SURINAME
IS A MELTING POT OF CULTURES, INCLUDING AMERINDIANS
AND MAROON TRIBES, THE DESCENDANTS OF
AFRICAN SLAVES WHO ESCAPED INTO THE FOREST. NEARLY EVERYONE
LIVES ON THE COAST, BUT SOME PEOPLE
EKE OUT A LIVING IN ITS REMOTE INTERIOR, AND THAT’S WHERE THE ATTACKS
HAVE BEEN REPORTED. THE QUICKEST WAY IN
IS BY LIGHT AIRCRAFT. NEARLY THE WHOLE COUNTRY IS BLANKETED IN
PRISTINE RAINFOREST, AND THERE’S A VERY STRONG
RIVER CULTURE HERE. MY DESTINATION IS A VILLAGE
CALLED DONDERSKAMP. I HEAR THAT EVERYBODY HERE
HAS SOME STORY ABOUT PIRANHA. [ SPEAKING NATIVE LANGUAGE ] SHE WENT SWIMMING
IN THE RIVER HERE, AND A PIRANHA
BIT HER ON THE LEG. WHATEVER IS TARGETING
THE VILLAGERS HERE CLEARLY HAS
INCREDIBLY STRONG JAWS. [ SPEAKING NATIVE LANGUAGE ] Wade:
HE WAS SWIMMING IN THE WATER. APPARENTLY,
ABOUT THE TIME THIS HAPPENED, VARIOUS OTHER PEOPLE
HAD BEEN BITTEN, AND PEOPLE HAD WARNED HIM
NOT TO GO IN THE WATER, BUT HE WAS IN THERE, AND THAT’S WHEN
HE FELT SOMETHING. THE PIRANHA DID TAKE, ACTUALLY,
A BIT OF BONE FROM THE END OF HIS TOE THERE. THERE’S QUITE A BIT MISSING. THEY’RE BLAMING PIRANHAS
FOR THE ATTACKS, BUT AS TO WHAT TYPE, IN THESE MURKY WATERS,
THERE’S JUST NO WAY OF KNOWING. WHAT’S CLEAR, THOUGH, IS THAT THE VILLAGERS
ARE VERY AFRAID OF THEM. I’M KEEN TO GET ON THE RIVER
AND SEE FOR MYSELF, BUT BEFORE I SET OUT,
THE LOCALS SUGGEST I GET SOME PROTECTION FROM
A MAROON ELDER. CLEARLY, THEY THINK I NEED IT. MAROON TRIBES
PRACTICE A TRIBAL RELIGION CALLED WINTIE, AND THEY WEAR AMULETS
CALLED BUOYS TO PROTECT THEM FROM HARM. I’VE BEEN TAKEN TO THE MAN
WHO PREPARES THE INGREDIENTS THAT GIVE THE AMULET ITS POWER. IT TAKES SEVEN DAYS TO MAKE, AND I’M COMING ALONG
FOR THE FINAL STAGES. SO WHAT’S INSIDE HERE
ARE VARIOUS INGREDIENTS — WHAT LOOKS LIKE ASH,
VARIOUS MEDICINAL HERBS, TWO HORSESHOES,
AND SOME IRON BALLS, AS WELL. YEAH?
MM. [ SPEAKING NATIVE LANGUAGE ] [ RATTLING ] SO THE BUOY
HAS BEEN PUT INSIDE THE POT ALONG WITH ALL THE VARIOUS
INGREDIENTS THAT WERE THERE, AND THE IDEA IS NOW
IT’S GOING TO BE COOKED AND THE BUOY WILL ABSORB
THE POWERS OF THOSE INGREDIENTS. [ SPEAKING NATIVE LANGUAGE ] I’M TOLD TO DIP MY FINGERS
INTO THE BOILING CONCOCTION. YOU CAN DO IT.
YOU CAN DO IT. PIRAÑA… PIRANHA,
DON’T COME BITE ME. YES. YES. [ SPEAKING NATIVE LANGUAGE ] SO HE’S SAYING THE PIRANHA
IS A DANGEROUS FISH, BUT WITH
THE PROTECTION OF THIS BUOY, THEY WILL LEAVE ME ALONE. WITHOUT THIS,
I COULD BE IN DANGER. OKAY. MM-HMM. AFTER SOME FINISHING TOUCHES, THE BUOY IS READY
TO BE PUT ON MY ARM. THE RATIONALIST IN ME KNOWS THIS WHOLE THING
DOESN’T STACK UP… BUT FISHERMEN ARE
A SUPERSTITIOUS BREED, AND I’M NO EXCEPTION. A FINAL DOUSING WITH ALCOHOL,
AND THE CEREMONY IS COMPLETE. THE POWER OF ANYTHING LIKE THIS
IS LARGELY THE POWER OF TRADITION, THE POWER OF BELIEF
THAT’S BEHIND IT. IF NOTHING ELSE,
THIS CEREMONY SHOWS THERE’S A GENUINE FEAR OF
WHAT’S IN THE WATER HERE. BUT I STILL WANT TO FIND OUT
WHAT IT IS. JUST UPSTREAM FROM DONDERSKAMP
IS A SLUICE. THESE EDDIES
ARE IDEAL AMBUSH SPOTS FOR PREDATORY FISH. MY LEADER IS WRAPPED WITH
FLEXIBLE WOVEN METAL TO PREVENT ANYTHING TOOTHY
FROM BITING THROUGH IT. BUT THAT’S NOT STOPPING
WHATEVER’S DOWN HERE. RIGHT. THIS IS —
THIS IS WIRE I’VE GOT HERE. THAT’S ACTUALLY
GONE THROUGH THAT. GONE RIGHT THROUGH IT. AH! AND IT DOESN’T HAPPEN
JUST ONCE. AGAIN. LOOK AT THAT. IT’S DONE IT AGAIN. AH! DON’T BELIEVE IT. THAT’S THREE TIMES. THIS IS 50-POUND BRAIDED WIRE, AND IT’S JUST CUT THROUGH IT. IT WAS ON
FOR A FRACTION OF A SECOND. CUT THROUGH METAL. THE WIRE
HAS BEEN BITTEN THROUGH LIKE IT’S COTTON THREAD. IF I FELL IN THE WATER HERE, I COULD HAVE CHUNKS
BITTEN OUT OF ME IN SECONDS. JUST AS I THINK SOMETHING IS GOING TO BITE
THROUGH MY LINE AGAIN, I FINALLY GET A GOOD HOOKUP. THAT FEELS LIKE
IT’S ATTACHED PROPERLY. ALL RIGHT. LET’S SEE. AND AS I PULL MY CATCH IN, I SEE
THE HORRIFYING FULL EFFECT OF WHAT’S DOWN THERE. LOOK, LOOK!
RIGHT, TO THE RIGHT. I’M IN SURINAME
FOLLOWING UP A LEAD THAT COULD EXPLAIN THE GRUESOME
DEATH OF A YOUNG MAN, WHICH IS CHALLENGING
WHAT I THOUGHT I KNEW ABOUT PIRANHAS. ALL RIGHT. LET’S SEE.
OKAY. HEY. SOMETHING WENT FOR THAT. DO YOU SEE THAT?
SOMETHING WENT FOR IT. LOOK, LOOK.
RIGHT, TO THE RIGHT. THIS IS VERY INTERESTING. CATFISH. LOOK AT THAT. LOOK AT THAT.
LOOK AT THAT. ONE FISH
SLASHED IN HALF BY ANOTHER IN A LIGHTNING-FAST ATTACK. IN THE TIME THAT IT TOOK
TO BRING THAT IN — WELL, HALF OF IT’S BEEN TAKEN. THIS HAS ACTUALLY BEEN
BIT ON THE HEAD, AS WELL WHERE THERE’S BONE,
WHERE IT’S HARDER TISSUE. I CAN SEE THE SIGNATURE HERE. I CAN SEE
THE SEMI-CIRCULAR BITE MARKS, AND YOU CAN ACTUALLY EVEN SEE
THE INDIVIDUAL TOOTH MARKS HERE. SO THIS IS, YOU KNOW,
A LARGE FISH, AND IT’S JUST COME IN AND IT’S JUST BEEN
REPEATEDLY BITING. THIS WENT FROM BEING
A PERFECTLY HEALTHY FISH TO BEING HALF DEVOURED
IN A MATTER OF SECONDS. IT’S JUST ONE THING
THAT NEEDS TO HAPPEN, AND IT BECOMES A VICTIM. LIKE OSCAR, ONE MINUTE HAPPILY SWIMMING,
DEAD THE NEXT. WHAT COULD BE RESPONSIBLE? [ INSECTS BUZZING ] BUT AFTER
THIS EXPLOSION OF ACTIVITY, IT ALL GOES QUIET. THIS IS VERY STRANGE. I’M NOT EVEN GETTING
ANY TOUCHES NOW. IT’S AS IF THEY VANISHED. EITHER THEY’RE FEEDING WITH
A VENGEANCE, OR THEY’RE NOT, AND THERE’S NO SORT OF
HALFWAY HOUSE. THERE’S NO HALF MEASURES
WITH THEM. I HAVEN’T TRAVELED ALL THIS WAY TOO GIVE UP ON
THIS FEROCIOUS PREDATOR NOW. THE VILLAGERS TOLD ME THERE HAVE BEEN ATTACKS
ALL AROUND HERE, AND RECENTLY IN THE WATERS OF
A MAN-MADE LAKE CALLED BROKOPONDO. WHEN IT WAS BUILT IN THE 1960s, THE DAM FLOODED THE VALLEY
AND DROWNED THE RAINFOREST. WE HAVE TO NAVIGATE BETWEEN
THE SKELETONS OF THE TREES. THE WATER HERE
IS REASONABLY CLEAR, SO MAYBE I’LL FINALLY SEE
THE MYSTERY ATTACKER… IF I CAN DRAW IT
TO THE SURFACE. I SPOT THE PERFECT PLACE TO TRY OUT
SOME UNORTHODOX FISHING, WHERE THERE’S ALREADY SIGNS OF
ACTIVITY NEAR THE SURFACE. PUT A BIT OF CHICKEN SKIN
ON HERE. GONNA USE A BIT OF WIRE
JUST TO TIE IT ON WITH AND SEE WHAT THEY DO TO IT,
AND, WITH A BIT OF LUCK, I CAN ACTUALLY WATCH
THEIR RESPONSE TO THE FOOD. THERE’S SMALLER STUFF
ON THE SURFACE. WITHOUT HESITATION,
THEY GO FOR THE BAIT. OH, YES, YES, YES, YES. OH! THERE’S NO HOOK ON HERE. AND — RIGHT. THAT WAS THE WORK OF
JUST A FEW SECONDS. SOMETHING GRABBED THAT. SHALL WE PUT THAT BACK IN AGAIN, SEE IF THEY’RE INTERESTED IN
THE LAST FRAGMENT? YEAH, YEAH, THERE WE GO.
THERE WE GO. THERE WE GO. I’M PROBABLY SEEING ABOUT A DOZEN DOWN THERE
AT THE MOMENT. THEY’RE JUST DARK SHAPES THAT… THERE WE GO.
THERE’S ANOTHER ONE’S GOT IT. ANOTHER ONE’S GOT IT. HERE WE GO. AND ANOTHER AND ANOTHER
AND ANOTHER AND ANOTHER. LOOK AT THAT.
THEY REALLY WANT THAT. THEY REALLY WANT THAT. THEY DEVOURED THE SKIN
IN AN INSTANT. THEY’RE JUST TOO QUICK
FOR ME TO GET A CLOSE LOOK AT. LET’S SEE WHAT WILL HAPPEN WITH
A WHOLE CHICKEN. I HANG IT FROM A POST THAT I’VE LODGED IN
THE LAKE BED… SO WHATEVER GOES FOR IT
HAS TO STAY AT THE SURFACE. GOOD. THAT’S US. THERE’S SOMETHING AT IT.
THE CHICKEN IS MOVING. SOMETHING
IS PULLING AT THAT CHICKEN. THERE ARE SMALL FISH IN THERE, WHICH EVERY NOW AND THEN
SCATTER. [ SPLASHING ] OH, RIGHT! THERE’S ONE —
THEY’RE ALL COMING IN. THEY’RE ALL COMING IN. AS SOON AS ONE GETS STUCK IN,
THEY’RE ALL IN THERE. THE FRENZY
BRINGS A FISH INTO SIGHT. I’M IN SOUTH AMERICA, INVESTIGATING
THE GRUESOME DEATH OF A MAN WHO HAD HIS FACE RIPPED OFF. AND I’VE UNCOVERED
UNPRECEDENTED EVIDENCE THAT HE WAS KILLED BY PIRANHAS. [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] IS A SAVAGE NEW SPECIES
BEHIND THE ATTACK OR IS SOMETHING MORE SINISTER
GOING ON? I’M CONDUCTING A TEST
WHICH MIGHT GIVE ME SOME CLUES. OH! RIGHT.
THEY’RE ALL COMING IN. THEY’RE ALL COMING IN.
THIS IS IT. AS SOON AS ONE GETS STUCK IN,
THEY’RE ALL THERE. AND THEY’RE JUST PULLING IT
THIS WAY, THAT WAY. EVERY NOW AND AGAIN, IT’S ALMOST LIKE
IT’S A LITTLE FREEZE FRAME. I CAN JUST SEE
FOR A FRACTION OF A SECOND A BLACK SHAPE OUT OF THE WATER. DEFINITELY BLACK PIRANHAS. [ CAMERA SHUTTER CLICKS ] AS FAR AS I KNOW,
THIS IS BEHAVIOR THAT’S NEVER BEEN CAUGHT
ON CAMERA BEFORE. BLACK PIRANHAS, THE SUPPOSEDLY SOLITARY AND TIMID MEMBERS
OF THE PIRANHA FAMILY, IN A MASS FEEDING FRENZY. THAT’S IT. I CAN ACTUALLY SEE — OH! — THAT WAS A LARGE FISH,
A LARGE FISH. IT’S GONE.
IT’S ALL STOPPED. I THINK THEY’VE HAD IT. I WAS EXPECTING TO GO IN THERE
AND INVESTIGATE A SKELETON, BUT THERE’S NOTHING LEFT. THIS IS BEHAVIOR
THAT GOES AGAINST ALL THAT WAS
PREVIOUSLY BELIEVED, AND IT PUTS BLACK PIRANHAS IN THE FRAME FOR
THE RECENT ATTACKS. IF STUDIES SAY THEY’RE
TIMID AND SOLITARY FISH, IT’S TIME FOR A REWRITE. IT ALSO SHOWS ME
THAT THEY HAVE THE ABILITY TO CHANGE THEIR BEHAVIOR AND BECOME
POTENTIAL MAN-KILLERS. I’M HEADING BACK TO THE ATTACK SITE
ON THE RIO YATA TO SEE IF THIS PHENOMENON OF
CHANGING BEHAVIOR COULD ACCOUNT FOR
OSCAR’S HORRIFIC DEATH THERE. THE FIRST TIME
I ARRIVED IN SANTA TERESITA, IT WAS LIKE A GHOST TOWN. NEARLY EVERYBODY WAS WORKING
FAR AWAY FROM THE VILLAGE. BUT NOW MANY HAVE RETURNED. [ INDISTINCT CONVERSATIONS ] PERHAPS
THE WITNESS I HEARD ABOUT WHEN I FIRST CAME HERE, THE PERSON WHO RECOVERED
OSCAR’S BODY, HAS COME BACK, TOO. BUENAS — BUENAS TARDES. Sí. PEOPLE KNOW WHO HE IS,
AND THEY SAY HE’S HERE. I’M POINTED
IN THE DIRECTION OF HIS HOUSE. AFTER WEEKS OF SEARCHING, FINALLY SOMEONE WHO ACTUALLY
WITNESSED THE ATTACK. [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] CARMELO TELLS ME IT WAS A DAY
HE WILL NEVER FORGET. [ CARMELO SPEAKING SPANISH ] MM. FINALLY, I HEAR THE TRUE STORY BEHIND THE TRAGIC DEATH OF
OSCAR BARBOSA. CARMELO WAS OPERATING ONE OF THE FERRIES
THAT RUNS ACROSS THE RIO YATA. IT WAS A HOT DAY, AND HE SAW OSCAR
DIVE INTO THE WATER. [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] AT FIRST, HE WAS SWIMMING
WITHOUT DIFFICULTY. BUT THEN HE STARTED STRUGGLING
AND SINKING BELOW THE SURFACE. [ SHOUTING INDISTINCTLY ] THE THIRD TIME HE WENT UNDER, CARMELO REALIZED
THIS WAS SERIOUS. SOMETHING HAD TO BE DONE. CARMELO AND A FRIEND
RACED OUT TO THE SPOT WHERE OSCAR DISAPPEARED. [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] HE TIED A ROPE AROUND HIS WAIST
AND BRAVELY DIVED IN… BUT THE WATER WAS MURKY
AND HE COULDN’T FIND HIM. HE WENT UNDER A SECOND TIME…
BUT NOTHING. THE THIRD TIME, HE STARTED
TO FEEL HIS WAY AROUND. [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] THE FOURTH TIME HE WENT DOWN, HE FOUND A FOOT
AND HUNG ON TO IT. WHILE BRINGING OSCAR’S BODY
UP TO THE SURFACE, HE FELT
A SEARING PAIN IN HIS ARM. CARMELO, TOO, WAS UNDER ATTACK. HE STILL BEARS THE SCARS
OF THE WOUNDS HE ENDURED RETRIEVING OSCAR FROM
THE BOTTOM OF THE RIO YATA. AS HE SURFACED WITH THE BODY, HE SAID
THE PIRANHAS ALL SURFACED LIKE A SHOAL OF SARDINES
OR SOMETHING COMING UP WITH THE BODY. [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] BY THEN HE’D SEEN THE DAMAGE. HE’D SEEN WHERE ALL THE FLESH
HAD BEEN EATEN AWAY. A LOT OF BLEEDING,
AND HE SAID, AT THAT TIME, YOU KNOW,
OSCAR WAS ALREADY DEAD. CARMELO WAS ATTACKED BY THE SAME PIRANHAS
THAT KILLED OSCAR. HE HAS NO DOUBT ABOUT
WHICH SPECIES THEY WERE… DO YOU KNOW WHAT TYPE OF PIRANHA
THEY WERE, HERE? [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] …AND IT’S NOT THE ANSWER
I WAS EXPECTING. I’M IN BOLIVIA TRYING TO IDENTIFY
WHAT KIND OF PIRANHA KILLED A YOUNG MAN
IN THE RIO YATA. I FOUND A WITNESS
NAMED CARMELO, WHO BRAVELY TRIED TO SAVE HIM AND WAS, HIMSELF,
BITTEN IN THE PROCESS. BUT WITH ALMOST 40 SPECIES
OF TRUE PIRANHA, WHICH ONE IS THE CULPRIT? DO YOU KNOW WHAT TYPE OF PIRANHA
THEY WERE, HERE? [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] ROJO? ROJO. ROJO, YEAH. HE SAYS THEY WERE
BRIGHTLY COLORED, RED, AND HE INDICATED
THE BELLY AND THE FLANKS, AND THAT’S A VERY CLEAR,
POSITIVE I.D. THOSE WERE RED-BELLIED PIRANHAS. THIS WASN’T
WHAT I WAS EXPECTING TO HEAR. CARMELO’S TESTIMONY
IS THE FIRST TIME I’VE HEARD AN EYEWITNESS DESCRIBE
AN ADULT HUMAN BEING TARGETED AND KILLED
BY RED-BELLIED PIRANHAS. IT’S AN UNPRECEDENTED EVENT AND RUNS COUNTER TO EXPERIMENTS
I’VE CONDUCTED, SHOWING THAT RED-BELLIES
WON’T NORMALLY ATTACK PEOPLE OR LARGE ANIMALS, BUT THEY’RE NOT THE MONSTERS THAT “B” MOVIES WOULD HAVE US
BELIEVE THEY ARE. SO, IS THIS JUST A FREAK EVENT? I HAVE TO KNOW
IF THIS IS A ONE-OFF OR IS SOMETHING HAPPENING THAT’S SIMILAR TO
THE CHANGE IN PIRANHA BEHAVIOR I WITNESSED IN SURINAME? PIRAÑA.
MM. CARMELO SAYS THAT OSCAR’S
IS NOT THE ONLY ATTACK HE’S COME ACROSS ON THE RIVER. [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] PIRANHAS STRUCK NEAR A RIVERSIDE RANCH
VERY RECENTLY. IF I HURRY, I MIGHT
MAKE IT THERE BEFORE NIGHTFALL. ON THE WAY,
I HEAR NEWS OF OTHER ATTACKS. [ SPEAKING NATIVE LANGUAGE ] HE’S SAYING
THERE’S BIG PIRANHAS HERE. HIS COUSIN WAS BITTEN. [ SPEAKING CONTINUES ] AH, OKAY. YEAH, HE WAS WASHING HIS HANDS,
AND SOMETHING CAME ALONG AND TOOK
A BIG LUMP OUT OF HIS HAND. SO HE SAYS, “PIRANHAS,
YOU’VE GOT TO WATCH THEM HERE.” THE CASE AGAINST THE PIRANHAS
IS BUILDING. IT SEEMS THAT OSCAR’S ATTACK WAS NOT
A ONCE-AND-DONE INCIDENT. WE JUST MAKE THE RANCH BY DUSK, AND THE CONVERSATION
SOON TURNS TO ATTACKS. [ CULEBRA SPEAKING SPANISH ] CULEBRA, A LABORER, TELLS ME THAT THE ATTACK
CARMELO HEARD ABOUT HAPPENED ONLY SIX MONTHS AGO. THIS TIME IT WASN’T ON A HUMAN, BUT SOMETHING LARGER
AND MUCH MORE POWERFUL. [ HORSE WHINNIES ] THREE COWBOYS FOUND A HORSE
FROM A NEIGHBORING RANCH THAT HAD SWUM ACROSS THE RIVER
ONTO THEIR LAND. THEY GOT IT BACK INTO THE WATER
TO RETURN IT. IT WAS LITERALLY JUST A FEW FEET
AWAY FROM THE BANK, AND THE PIRANHAS
ATTACKED IT. [ HORSE NEIGHS ] AS SOON AS
IT STARTED BLEEDING, MORE AND MORE PIRANHAS
CAME. THE COWBOYS DESPERATELY TRIED
TO RECOVER THE HORSE. IN JUST THE TIME
THAT IT TOOK THEM TO DO THAT, THE ANIMAL WAS DEAD. NOT ONLY THAT, IT HAD BEEN
HOLLOWED OUT BY THE FISH, AND WHEN THEY MANAGED TO GET THE BODY OF THE HORSE
OUT OF THE WATER, THERE WAS APPARENTLY
JUST A STREAM OF PIRANHAS FALLING OUT OF
A HOLE IN ITS SKIN. IT WAS THAT QUICK
THAT IT HAPPENED. THESE LATEST STORIES HAVE GIVEN ME
A LOT OF FOOD FOR THOUGHT. I REALIZE I CAN’T DENY THE MOUNTING EVIDENCE
I’M FACED WITH ANY LONGER. THE PIRANHAS HERE SEEM TO BE
MORE AGGRESSIVE THAN NORMAL. IN CHAOS THEORY,
THE TERM “BUTTERFLY EFFECT” SUGGESTS THAT A SMALL CHANGE, SUCH AS THE TINY BREEZE CREATED
BY BUTTERFLIES’ WINGS, CAN ESCALATE INTO A HUGE
AND UNPREDICTABLE CONSEQUENCES. THE CHAIN OF CAUSE AND EFFECT
IN NATURE RIPPLES FROM
ONE EVENT TO ANOTHER AND NEVER MORE SO THAN IN THE WATER ENVIRONMENT
OF RIVERS. PIRANHAS HERE ARE ATTACKING
HEALTHY, LIVING PEOPLE AND EVEN CREATURES
AS LARGE AS HORSES, BUT WHY? PERHAPS SOMETHING HAS HAPPENED
IN THE RIVER TO PROVOKE
THIS CHANGE IN BEHAVIOR. I’VE SEEN SOMETHING
SIMILAR BEFORE IN PAPUA NEW GUINEA. THE NORMALLY VEGETARIAN PACU
STARTED ATTACKING HUMANS IN THE ABSENCE OF
ITS USUAL FOOD SUPPLY. IF THE PEACEFUL PACU CAN BE TRANSFORMED
INTO A SAVAGE ATTACKER, COULD SOMETHING SIMILAR HAPPEN WHEN THE PIRANHA’S ENVIRONMENT
IS CHANGED? I START ASKING AROUND TO SEE IF PEOPLE HAVE NOTICED ANYTHING THAT’S CHANGED
IN THE RIO YATA. I’M SOON TOLD OF
A PREDATORY FISH THAT APPEARED IN THESE WATERS
JUST 20 YEARS AGO. COULD ITS ARRIVAL
HAVE SOME CONNECTION TO RED-BELLIED PIRANHAS
TURNING INTO MAN-KILLERS? I’VE GOT A NEW FISH TO FIND,
BUT WILL IT CLOSE THE CASE? I FOUND A COUPLE OF LOCALS WHO WILL TAKE ME TO WHERE
I MIGHT BE ABLE TO CATCH ONE OF THESE
MYSTERIOUS RIVER INVADERS. THE ONLY OTHER PEOPLE AROUND
ARE GOLD PROSPECTORS LIVING ON DREDGES
IN THE MIDDLE OF THE RIVER. [ THUNDER RUMBLES ] THE FINAL PART OF THE JOURNEY IS A TREK THROUGH JUNGLE
TO A LAKE. THE LAKE, APPARENTLY,
IS AN OXBOW. THAT’S TO SAY
IT’S A BEND OF THE RIVER. WHEN THE WATER’S UP,
IT’S ACTUALLY PART OF THE RIVER. WHEN THE WATER GOES DOWN,
LIKE NOW IN THE DRY SEASON, IT’S CUT OFF, SO YOU HAVE TO
COME THROUGH THE FOREST, AND I CAN JUST SEE WATER NOW. THIS IS THE IDEAL TIME TO FISH BECAUSE
ALL THE LAKE’S INHABITANTS ARE CAPTIVE QUARRY AT THE VERY END OF
THE DRY SEASON. BUT WHEN THE IMMINENT
RAINY SEASON ARRIVES, THE WATERS WILL RISE UP,
RECONNECT WITH THE RIVER, AND SPREAD INTO
THE SURROUNDING FOREST, MAKING EVERYTHING
MUCH HARDER TO CATCH. NO ONE CAN EXPLAIN TO ME
EXACTLY WHAT FISH I’M AFTER, OTHER THAN IT’S VERY BIG. SUDDENLY, THERE’S A BITE… OH! …AND ALMOST IMMEDIATELY,
MY LINE BREAKS. THE LINE BROKE
RIGHT BY THE REEL. RIGHT BY THE REEL. THERE’S A FISH ON IT, YEAH. BUT THE LURE
IS STILL IN THE FISH’S MOUTH WITH A LENGTH OF LINE
TRAILING BEHIND. HERE’S THE LINE. BUENO. OKAY. GRACIAS. THERE HE GOES.
[ LAUGHS ] ONE OF MY GUIDES, CALLED GARY, DEFTLY RETRIEVES THE FREE END
AND SAVES THE CATCH. [ SIGHS ] SO, THIS PEACOCK BASS —
VERY, VERY AGGRESSIVE PREDATOR, AS CAN BE SEEN BY
JUST THE SIZE OF THE MOUTH IN RELATION TO
THE REST OF THE BODY. SPINY DORSAL FIN. NEEDS TO BE HANDLED
QUITE CAREFULLY, AND THE OTHER THING TO SAY ABOUT
THIS PEACOCK BASS — THE NAME COMES FROM
THE EYESPOT ON THE TAIL. THAT DOES
VERY MUCH LOOK LIKE AN EYE, AND ANYTHING LIKE A HERON
THAT COMES ALONG IS BASICALLY
GOING TO JAB THE WRONG END. PEACOCK BASS
HAVE BEEN A STAPLE CATCH FOR AS LONG AS
PEOPLE HAVE LIVED HERE, SO THIS ISN’T
THE MYSTERY NEWCOMER. MMM. OVER SUPPER, GARY TELLS ME
HOW THE LOCALS REACTED WHEN THE FISH I’M AFTER
WAS FIRST SPOTTED. WHEN THEY FIRST APPEARED HERE,
THEY DIDN’T KNOW WHAT THEY WERE, AND BECAUSE THEY’RE SO BIG,
THEY WERE AFRAID OF THEM, AND THEY WOULD ACTUALLY
BE BANGING ON THEIR CANOES TO TRY AND SCARE THEM AWAY. [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] HERE THEY CALL THEM PAICHE,
A NAME I’M NOT FAMILIAR WITH. AND IT DOESN’T LOOK LIKE
I’LL BE CATCHING ONE TODAY. THE NEXT DAY, WHAT SEEMS LIKE
A PROMISING START SOON CLOUDS OVER. IS THIS THE VERY BEGINNING OF
THE RAINY SEASON? [ THUNDER RUMBLES ] SINCE I DON’T KNOW
WHAT I’M DEALING WITH, I’VE DECIDED TO FOLLOW
THE SAME TECHNIQUE DEVISED BY THE FISHERMEN HERE
FOR CATCHING PAICHE. APPARENTLY, THE FISH IS SO BIG, THEY’VE HAD TO IMPROVISE
THEIR OWN GRAPPLING HOOKS. THEY’VE ACTUALLY TAKEN
THREE SINGLE HOOKS, JOINED THEM TOGETHER TO MAKE
A HOMEMADE TREBLE HOOK, AND THEN HANGING JUST
A COUPLE OF INCHES BELOW THAT, THIS IS A BEARING
OUT OF A MOTORBIKE OR A CAR, HAVING A NEW INCARNATION
AS A FISHING WEIGHT, ATTACHED TO VERY HEAVY
NYLON LINE. BEING NYLON,
THAT’S ACTUALLY QUITE THIN. THAT’S GONNA BE INTERESTING
IN YOUR HANDS WHEN THAT’S GOING OUT AT SPEED. HERE, THE FISHERMEN LOOK FOR DISTURBANCES
ON THE WATER’S SURFACE, THEN CAST THEIR WEIGHT
ACROSS IT, DRAW IN THE LINE
AS QUICKLY AS POSSIBLE, AND HOPEFULLY
SNAG THE FISH BELOW. SO, I BRING IT IN,
BRING IT IN, BRING IT IN. IF I FEEL ANYTHING, I THEN JUST PULL ON THE LINE
AS HARD AS I CAN, AND THAT’S WHEN
IT COULD GET INTERESTING. MM-HMM. SNAGGING ISN’T A TECHNIQUE
I’D NORMALLY USE BECAUSE OF THE INJURIES
IT CAUSES TO THE FISH. BUT WHATEVER’S ARRIVED
IN THESE WATERS IS AN INVASIVE SPECIES, AND THESE FISHERMEN KEEP
WHATEVER THEY CATCH FOR THEIR COMMUNITY. [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] THE RAIN MAKES
SPOTTING SURFACE MOVEMENT EXTREMELY DIFFICULT. BUT ONCE THE RAIN EASES OFF,
WE’RE PRIMED FOR ACTION. THESE DISTURBANCES
CAN HAPPEN ANYWHERE, SO ALL THREE OF US ARE CONSTANTLY
SCANNING THE WATER, LOOKING FOR WHERE THEY APPEAR. OH! THAT WAS RIGHT NEXT TO THE BOAT,
BUT I DIDN’T FEEL ANYTHING. [ INDISTINCT TALKING ] [ GROANS ] [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] I ACTUALLY
FELT SOMETHING HERE. HE IS SAYING
I SHOULD HAVE HIT THAT HARDER. TO DOUBLE OUR CHANCES, GARY STARTS THROWING
HIS LINE OUT, AS WELL. [ SIGHS ] IF ONE OF US HOOKS UP, THE OTHER WILL HELP
PULL IT IN… BUT IN A TINY AND UNSTABLE BOAT
LIKE THIS, A HUGE FISH
ON THE END OF THE LINE COULD EASILY PULL US IN. I’M WORRIED ABOUT
ENDING UP IN THE WATER WHERE THERE MIGHT ALSO BE
PIRANHAS. I KEEP CATCHING TANTALIZING FLASHES
OF SOMETHING IN THE WATER, BUT NO DEFINITE SIGHTING OF
THE FISH I’M AFTER. [ THUNDER RUMBLES ] IT MAKES ME ALL THE MORE
DETERMINED TO CATCH IT. [ GROANS ] FINALLY,
GARY HOOKS INTO SOMETHING. COULD THIS BE THE MONSTER
THAT SOMEHOW TURNED THE LOCAL PIRANHAS
AGAINST HUMANS? I’M IN BOLIVIA TRYING TO HUNT DOWN
A GIANT PREDATOR THAT’S INVADING
THESE REMOTE JUNGLES… [ GROANS ] …AN UNDERWATER INTRUDER
THAT MIGHT SOMEHOW CHANGE THE BEHAVIOR OF LOCAL PIRANHAS,
MAKING THEM ATTACK HUMANS WHO THEY USED TO
LIVE PEACEFULLY ALONGSIDE. AND THERE’S SOMETHING HUGE
ON THE END OF THE LINE. GARY PULLS HARD,
BUT THE BEAST GETS AWAY. LEFT BEHIND ON THE HOOK,
HOWEVER, IS A FASCINATING CLUE
SNAGGED FROM THE FISH’S SIDE. THAT’S A SCALE FROM
A VERY BIG FISH. GARY TELLS ME THAT THIS IS FROM THE FISH
THEY CALL THE PAICHE. I RECOGNIZE IT AS
A SCALE FROM A HUGE ARAPAIMA. THE SCALE HAS A STRIKING COLOR,
AND FROM ITS SIZE, I ESTIMATE ITS OWNER WAS CLOSE TO 300 POUNDS
IN WEIGHT AND EIGHT FEET LONG. THIS IS
AN OLD ADVERSARY OF MINE. ARAPAIMA
ARE FORMIDABLE PREDATORS — INCREDIBLY MUSCULAR, SHEATHED IN
FLEXIBLE BODY ARMOR, AND ALMOST IMMUNE TO ATTACK. MASSIVE FEMALE ARAPAIMA. ABOUT 150 POUNDS. THEY ATTAIN THEIR HUGE SIZE BY FEEDING ON ANYTHING THAT
FITS INTO THEIR MOUTHS — MOSTLY FISH,
WHICH THEY SWALLOW WHOLE. AND ONE FISH
IS A FAVORITE MEAL — PIRANHAS. TOOTHY, AGGRESSIVE PIRANHAS
DON’T STAND A CHANCE AGAINST THIS ARMOR-PLATED
EATING MACHINE. BUT I CAN’T BELIEVE
THIS SCALE IS HERE. ARAPAIMA
SHOULDN’T BE IN BOLIVIA. THIS COULD BE THE SIGNIFICANT EVENT
I’VE BEEN LOOKING FOR TO UNDERSTAND THE LETHAL CHANGE IN THE LOCAL
PIRANHA POPULATION… AND WHICH MIGHT ACCOUNT FOR
OSCAR BARBOSA’S TRAGIC DEATH. THE SCALE
IS HUGELY REVEALING TO ME. THESE ARE THE BREEDING COLORS
OF THE FEMALE — DARK BLACK, VIVID RED FRINGE
TO THE SCALE. THAT RED COLOR
IS A SIGNIFICANT SIGN. IF THEY’RE
SUCCESSFULLY BREEDING HERE, THEN THESE MONSTERS MAY ALREADY BE TAKING OVER
BOLIVIA’S WATERWAYS. THERE’S ONLY ONE WAY
TO FIND OUT WHAT’S GOING ON
BELOW THE SURFACE. BUT TO DO THAT,
I NEED DIFFERENT GEAR. [ SPEAKING SPANISH ] NOW THAT I KNOW
WHAT I’M FISHING FOR, I RETURN TO MY TRUSTED
ROD AND REEL. [ BOTH SPEAKING SPANISH ] I’VE SWITCHED UP THE LINE
TO A HIGHER BREAKING STRAIN. BUT GARY DOESN’T BELIEVE THAT I’LL BE ABLE TO BRING IN
AN ARAPAIMA ON WHAT LOOKS TO HIM LIKE
SUCH FLIMSY GEAR. HE WAS SAYING
THE LINE IS VERY THIN, IT’S NOT GONNA TAKE A BIG FISH. I WAS EXPLAINING, YOU KNOW, THIS LINE’S, ACTUALLY,
VERY STRONG. ANYWAY,
I PUT HIM ON THE ANGLER’S END, AND I THINK THERE WAS — A SORT OF A LIGHT BULB
WENT ON IN HIS HEAD. HE CAN UNDERSTAND NOW
HOW THIS EQUIPMENT, ALTHOUGH IT LOOKS FAIRLY FLIMSY
COMPARED TO WHAT HE USES, HOW THIS MIGHT BRING IN
A DECENT-SIZED FISH. IF WE CAN GET OUT ON THE WATER. BUT THE RAIN IS JUST FALLING
HARDER AND HARDER. JUST SITTING HERE, WAITING FOR
A BREAK IN THIS RAIN. AT THE MOMENT, IT’S JUST GOING
WITHOUT ANY LET-UP, AND THE GUYS SAY
THIS COULD ACTUALLY BE THE START OF THE WET SEASON,
AND IF THAT IS THE CASE, WHAT THAT MEANS IS
THE LAKE’S GONNA FILL UP AND IT’S GONNA
TURN TO MUDDY SOUP. IT’S GONNA JOIN WITH
THE MAIN RIVER, AND THE CHANCES OF ANYBODY
CATCHING ARAPAIMA ARE GONNA DISAPPEAR
UNTIL SEVERAL MONTHS FROM NOW. [ THUNDER RUMBLING ] ALL I WANT IS A LITTLE BREAK. FINALLY,
THE RAIN STARTS TO LIFT, BUT IT’S NOW LATE AFTERNOON. WE DON’T HAVE MUCH TIME
BEFORE DARK. IF THESE WATERS
ARE RIDDLED WITH ARAPAIMA, THEY COULD BE
NAILING THE PIRANHAS, PICKING OFF
THE SLOWER, WEAKER ONES AND LEAVING THE STRONGER
AND MORE AGGRESSIVE FISH. AND IF THEY’RE COMPETING FOR
THE SAME FOOD, PERHAPS
THIS HAS FORCED THE PIRANHAS TO BEHAVE IN
A MUCH MORE AGGRESSIVE FASHION. I WANT TO GET AN IMPRESSION
OF ARAPAIMA NUMBERS BY PUTTING A BAIT
WHERE THEY’RE LURKING. [ REEL CLICKING ] BUT THERE’S NOTHING DOING. GARY’S GETTING ANXIOUS. HE THINKS THAT TONIGHT MIGHT BE
OUR LAST CHANCE TO FISH BEFORE THE RELENTLESS
RAINY SEASON SETS IN. WE AGREE TO BRING HIS GEAR
INTO PLAY, TOO, AND HE SHOWS ME HOW PEOPLE HERE
FISH FOR ARAPAIMA AFTER DARK WHEN THE SURFACE DISTURBANCES
CAN’T BE SEEN. SO, BASICALLY,
THERE’S ONE MAIN LINE EVERY 10 YARDS OR SO. THE BAITS
ARE GONNA BE SUSPENDED. THEY WON’T BE ON THE BOTTOM. THEY’LL BE SOMEWHERE
IN MID-WATER. THE IDEA BEING THAT THEY’RE
GONNA INTERCEPT THE ARAPAIMA AS THEY’RE ACTIVELY HUNTING. FISHING AT NIGHT MEANS
I’M WORKING VIRTUALLY BLIND. MM-HMM. BUT IF
THE ARAPAIMA NUMBERS HERE ARE AS GREAT AS I SUSPECT, THEN HOPEFULLY, I WILL GET
A BAIT IN FRONT OF ONE. YEAH, THAT’S A FISH.
THAT’S A FISH. THAT’S GOOD SIZE, AS WELL. AND WE’LL JUST GLOVE THIS. OOF. HEY! SO, THERE WE GO. THIS IS AN ARAPAIMA. THE FIRST FISH I’VE PULLED IN
FROM THESE DARK WATERS IS A MOMENTOUS CATCH,
BUT NOT BECAUSE OF ITS SIZE. THIS ARAPAIMA
IS ONLY AROUND 2 YEARS OLD. THAT MEANS THESE HEAVILY
ARMORED EATING MACHINES ARE BREEDING HERE, SO THEIR POPULATION
COULD BE GROWING EVERY YEAR. HOW MANY MORE ARE OUT THERE? HOW BAD
HAS THIS INVASION BECOME? WE NEED TO CHECK THE LINES. AS WE PULL THEM IN,
IT BECOMES CLEAR… AH, YEAH, YEAH.
HERE WE GO. HERE’S A FISH. …THEY’RE HERE IN FORCE. THESE FISH,
GIVEN THE RIGHT CONDITIONS — WARM WATER, THEY DON’T NEED
A LOT OF OXYGEN — THEY CAN ABSOLUTELY TAKE OVER. SO, ONCE THE GENIE
IS OUT OF THE BOTTLE, YOU KNOW,
THERE’S NO PUTTING IT BACK. THESE THINGS ARE HERE TO STAY. IN THE CASE OF WHAT HAPPENED
ON THE RIO YATA THAT DAY, I SEE NOW ALL THE POSSIBLE PIECES OF
THE JIGSAW. MAYBE THIS
IS WHAT CAUSED OSCAR’S DEATH — NOT THE DIRECT CAUSE, BUT ONE OF THE FACTORS
THAT UPSET THE BALANCE. AND PUSHED THE PIRANHAS INTO
BECOMING MORE AGGRESSIVE, ATTACKING
ANYTHING AND ANYONE… [ INDISTINCT SHOUTING ] …AS THEY FIGHT FOR SURVIVAL IN THIS MORE COMPETITIVE
AND DANGEROUS RIVER WORLD. MAYBE
IT WAS ONLY A MATTER OF TIME BEFORE SOMEONE WAS KILLED. OSCAR WAS THE UNLUCKY ONE — IN THE WRONG PLACE
AT THE WRONG TIME… CAUGHT IN THE PERFECT STORM, AS NATURE DOES WHAT NATURE
HAS ALWAYS DONE — ADAPT TO SURVIVE.

24 thoughts on “[River Monsters] Season 05/ Episode 01- FACE RIPPER [HD-1080p]

  1. Hello everyone, from Season 05, I will not insert hardsub into episodes anymore. Instead, Vietnamese and English subtitles will be inserted in the CC / Subtitle tag, this will help you track the content of the episodes more easily and comfortably.

  2. Can’t wait to watch this later man you’re a legend keep uploading! Love it !

  3. Both of Vietnamese & English subtitle be addded on this episode. Click on CC tag and Setting to turn on the subtitles. Enjoy!

  4. Thanks for the video! Keep uploading these river monsters videos, you are the only person posting good quality videos and quite frequently👍🏽👍🏽

  5. Anybody who swims across a river in South America is tempting fate, and the nasty man eating fish and reptiles that drool at the chops when they see somebody trying it. I would literally attempt to run on the water if I were forced to cross over from one side to the other, trying to beat the 100 metres world record while doing it !!! Maybe poor Oscar cut himself when shaving that fateful morning ? Just a few drops of blood on his face or neck would surely have attracted a shoal of Piranhas, which sealed his fate, poor man. I can hardly think of a worse way to go than being eaten by a mob of bloodthirsty fish ! 😲🐠💨

  6. I havent seen river monsters since it went off Netflix years ago. Truly have missed the series. Keep uploading, ur doing us all a favour

  7. I disagree with the conclusion drawn in this episode. Piranhas aren't apex predators. There has always existed their natural enemies, whether Arapaima are in the river or not. The strong eat the weak. Weaker, meeker fish have always been good preys. That is how nature works, if you are weak or sick or dying, other predators eat you and if Arapaima's prey has always been Piranhas (Which appears to be the case since Arapaima exists in regions with Piranhas, not a new introduced species), then that relationship has always existed. You have only drawn your own conclusion without testing whether other rivers with pre existed Arapaima, Piranhas are more aggressive or not. I can also say, people have been fishing all the weaker, meeker Piranhas hence they are now more aggressive. Or maybe, the rain season is here, Piranhas are more aggressive, hence the rain seasons make Piranhas more aggressive! Doesn't mean that's true? Just because one thing exists in conjunction to another thing doesn't mean they are cause and effect. Unless you can prove to me that on rivers with Arapaima, all the Piranhas are more aggressive, then this is invalid. Not to mention, if that /is/ the true case, even if rivers with Arapaima, the Piranhas are worse, then that's natural behavior, not something that's odd or new. Don't go blame it on a natural predator just because you don't want Piranhas to have a bad name. It's fine if Piranhas are just that aggressive. You don't go pet a wild tiger, or a wild lion for that reason, either. They can really kill.

  8. I love River monsters and Jeremy Wade, but it’s very depressing everytime I see him release the fish that has had a metal hooks for his face to presumably die soon after. Like did you see how lifeless that poor stingray was

  9. That huge catfish with the feather like dorsal fin reminds me of my pet African feather fin squeaker/synodontis eupterus

  10. Why would you water mark someone else’s copyrighted content, enjoy the watch tho aha

  11. Black piranhas couldn’t have taken that huge bite out of that cat fish Jeremy caught on the abandoned dam in Sudan

  12. Please get rid of the logo in future, and don’t tell me to click the fucking bell

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