Tarsier: The Littlest Alien

Tarsier The Littlest AlienDiscover why the ancient primate, the Philippine tarsier, is surrounded by spiritual myths and has aroused suspicion and fear for centuries. This film unravels the mystery of these otherworldly creatures in the depths of the Philippine forests.
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Discover why the ancient alien-like primate, the Philippine tarsier, is surrounded by spiritual myths and has aroused suspicion and fear for centuries. This engrossing film unravels the mystery of these alien-like, otherworldly creatures, and takes viewers into the depths of the Philippine forests to witness tarsiers in their natural habitat.

Huge, lustrous eyes glisten in the moonlight, mobile ears scan the still night air, long elongated fingers cling to a branch and a strange whistling squeal pierces the silence of the forest. This is the mysterious Philippine tarsier.

In the depths of a Philippine rain forest, a tiny alien-like creature with long elongated fingers clings to a tree. Swiveling its head in almost a full circle, it scans the darkness for unsuspecting prey using huge lustrous eyes and strangely mobile ears.

This is the story of the Philippine tarsier the oldest and most mysterious primate in the world.

Small enough to nestle in the palm of a hand, with massive, appealing eyes set in a tiny head, these beguiling creatures have aroused suspicion and fear among humans for centuries. This is largely because of their strange features reminiscent of fantasied extraterrestrial creatures mysterious lives and the spiritual myths surrounding them.

This fascinating journey ventures into the undiscovered lives of the tarsiers living on the southern Philippine island of Bohol. Once protected by the humid rain forests and mist-shrouded hills, these mysterious primates struggle to survive as their home is cleared for crop growing.

Mystery and myths also surround the island of Bohol, making it an appropriate home for the tarsier. Scattered over the island are over a thousand dome-shaped mounds known as the ‘chocolate hills’. These hills are believed to be the discarded weapons from a fight between two giants or, more romantically, teardrops from a giant unlucky in love.

Tarsiers were long considered as otherworldly and spiritual, and for years have been hunted by the greatest predator – man.

These tiny vulnerable creatures also attracted veterinary scientist Irene Arboleda who was eager to learn more about them and carried out the first comprehensive scientific study.

Tarsier: The Littlest Alien follows Dr. Arboleda as she educates the local youngsters in an attempt to fulfill a dream of ensuring tarsiers still exist in the lives of her grandchildren.

© 2002 Natural History New Zealand Ltd
NTSC 4:3 – Total Running Time: 51-minutes

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Interesting Links:

The Philippine Tarsier Foundation
Click for the Full Script of this Program

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