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Our 5 Favorite Animal Videos of the Summer

See some of our producers' favorite recent videos, from a charging bear to a slimy highway.

Watch: Bear Charges Car

It's almost as though this bear were made to create the perfect Internet video. After being spotted on the side of the road, it quickly disappears into the woods. Then, with perfect timing for suspense, it launches itself at the car. It rivals any chase scene from your favorite Hollywood thriller.

The reason for the bear's aggression isn't clear. It didn't appear as though it had any young cubs nearby to protect, and it was observed chasing other cars later in the day. (Read more about the wild encounter.)

Nick Lunn, associate producer/editor

Lost Baby Wildebeest Mistakes Car for Mom

It’s a story straight out of a children’s book. A baby wildebeest becomes lost and desperately looks for its mother; but instead, it finds a car and thinks: “Close enough.”

Wildebeests instinctively stay with their herd by following the largest object they see, and in this case, that was an electric-blue Hyundai Tucson. The best part of the story is the reunion between the mother and her calf, which was captured on video and makes for the perfect happy ending. Read more here.

Hannah Lang, intern

Watch: 'Slime Eels' Explode on Highway After Bizarre Traffic Accident

Hagfish aren't just deep-sea mucus machines—they're also raised in the Pacific Northwest and shipped to parts of Asia, where they're known as a delicacy. The animals produce slimy mucus as a defense mechanism when they’re stressed or alarmed. The tanks the hagfish were being transported in were likely full of slime already, so when an accident caused the truck to dump its load all over the pavement (and one unfortunate car) in Oregon, firehoses and bulldozers were needed to mitigate the mess. Read more here.

—Shaena Montanari, mass media fellow

Manta Ray 'Brunch': Like Us, They're Social Eaters

They glide in small orbits through the clear and brilliant jade sea. Their wings pulse, powerful, in measured strokes, against water that holds an invisible meal they share. Manta rays are large enough to be a bit intimidating—for reference, compare them to the kayaker who briefly approaches their circling band. But seen from a distance overhead, they form a graceful and entrancing pattern, as though moving to the music of the waves. Read more about this behavior here.

Jim Burch, acquistions editor

Watch: Lion Cub Rescued After Falling Down 80-Foot Well

It's always inspiring to see people lend a hand when an animal's in trouble. In this video, villagers rescue a two-year-old lion cub that has fallen down a deep well in western India. And it's not just a happy ending for the cub—it's a win for the species as well. There are only about 500 of these Asiatic lions in India, so helping this one to rejoin her pride is a big victory. Read more about the rescue here.

Will Halicks, senior producer

This round-up originated as our weekly Watch This newsletter. Sign up for our newsletters today.