Tech | July 31, 2022 1:58 pm

TikTok Viewers Are Learning Unsettling Fact About Animals

Who doesn't love a good foray into science?

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In the right hands, TikTok can be surprisingly educational.
CFOTO/Future Publishing via Getty Images

In the early 1990s, a documentary series called The Trials of Life illustrated several things about life in the wild for many animals — including the perennial risk of something much larger devouring smaller animals at a moment’s notice. There’s a sequence about killer whales hunting seals that a friend of mine once described as the most disturbing thing he’d ever seen in nature.

It seems very possible that The Trials of Life was way ahead of its time. A new article at Atlas Obscura finds Mamadou Ndiaye, author of the book 100 Animals That Can F*cking End You, explaining how he stablished a presence for himself on TikTok highlighting the most harrowing aspects of the animal kingdom.


Few animals legit scare me and they’re on the list twice #chimp#gorilla#nature#moreyouknow#horrortok

♬ original sound – mndiaye_97

In the article, Ndiaye talks about developing his fondness for esoteric facts about animals at an early age. He studied environmental science at Rutgers University and began recording videos during the early days of the pandemic. Not all of them were about animals, but he quickly found that those were finding an audience.

“I just wanted an excuse to show this photo of a moose walking next to a car. It had freaked me out and I wanted to freak other people out,” he explained. “It was like the lunch room all over again.”

Ndiaye seems to have found an attentive audience on social media, drawn to obscure facts about animals in the same way he was. “Nature is brutal. It can be ugly and it can be uncomfortable, but it can also be beautiful,” he wrote. Sometimes, social media can be educational in the ways you’d least expect.