News A male Asiatic lion guarding his cub at London Zoo

To most of us, lions are African, but many of the great beasts of legend were Indian. Now a zoo plans to breed more of them

End of the furry tale: the life and death of Knut

The treatment of the famous polar bear provoked heated debate, reports Steve Connor

Knut the celebrity polar bear dies

Fans of polar bear Knut flocked to lay flowers Sunday outside his zoo enclosure, mourning the sudden death of a bear who burst into the limelight as a cuddly, fluffy cub hand-fed by his keeper.

Benda Bilili! (PG)

The term "life-affirming" has lost its significance through overuse; this documentary restores us to its real meaning.

Cooper Brown: The Zoo

Bad news – it turns out Victoria’s Australian nanny, the one who got dumped by the Greek guy by text, flew back to Oz today. Victoria rang me up and she’s all sobbing and I immediately think that something has happened to H-F?

Crocodile Hunter's zoo battling to remain open

When Australia's self-styled "Crocodile Hunter", Steve Irwin, was killed by a stingray's barb, his family pledged to continue his conservation work. Less than five years on, though, the wildlife park he turned into a global tourist attraction is rumoured to be drowning in debt and on the verge of closure.

Jamrach's Menagerie, By Carol Birch

Although Carol Birch's new novel derives from a real-life incident – the sinking of the whale-ship Essex in 1820 – and, in Charles Jamrach (1815-1891), hovers over a genuine personage, two of its chief references are straightforwardly literary. The first is Thackeray's ballad of maritime cannibalism "Little Billee". The second is the celebrated Jack London short story in which, as a gang of ship-wrecked sailors grimly debate their chances of survival, the rescue boat heaves into view five minutes after the cabin boy's throat has been cut. All this is to ignore a series of semaphore signals to the literature of the nautical East End that takes in everything from Our Mutual Friend and Thomas Burke's Limehouse Nights to Arthur Morrison's thriller The Hole in the Wall.

Video: Baby gorilla tries to walk

A three month old baby gorilla has been caught on camera at London Zoo taking his first steps.

Conservation Dogs: eco researchers

Dogs' sniffing powers have helped to detect bombs and smell signs of cancer. Now they're being used to track down endangered wildlife. Sue Corfield reports

Steve Backshall: Where the wild things are

Raging hippos, angry tigers, killer worms... It's no wonder Steve Backshall's wildlife show Deadly 60 is a jungle-sized hit with the kids. Nick Harding explores why

Endangered species: Cull to be kind?

When breeding programs are successful, endangered species are saved from extinction. But if too many animals are born, zoos have to take drastic steps

Video: Pandas granted US extension

China has extended a diplomacy agreement with the US, allowing two pandas to stay longer at Washington National Zoo.

Panda Power! Edinburgh awaits the patter of tiny paws

With news that China is sending two of its animal ambassadors to Scotland, David Randall looks at the subtleties of panda diplomacy

Chinese panda pledge 'symbol of friendship'

China said today it will gift Britain a pair of giant pandas as vice premier Li Keqiang marked the second day of his official visit to the UK with the signing of trade deals worth an estimated £2.6 billion.

Dom Joly: Welcome to my glass menagerie

I'm in Indonesia, on the island of Sulawesi, on a two-week trip to teach my daughter to scuba dive. I have a friend, Kaj, who is a scuba dive master and, whenever he moves to a new job we go and visit him. "You'll love this new place," he told me on Skype. "It's world-famous for muck diving and there are loads of weird creatures totally unique to here."

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Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 1 May 2015
Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

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A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

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300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before