A wolf and two of her three cubs which featured in last night’s Planet Earth III were discovered dead just after filming for the series finished.
The show’s filmmakers and researchers had achieved a first in managing to film inside the den of the mammals in the Cerrado grassland in Brazil.
But two pups and their mother Nhorinha were later found to have died after drowning in a ditch in nearby farmland, reported the Mirror.
The BBC One documentary showed how the red-coloured wolves have lost half of their habitat to farmers who burn the land to grow crops.
Among these wolves’ other distinctive features is their diet of fruit and particularly long legs.
A wolf mother and two of her three pups filmed in an episode of Planet Earth III have been discovered dead
The maned red-coloured wolves have distinctive long legs and a diet of fruit
But their habitat, Brazil’s Cerrado is being destroyed faster than the Amazon rainforest relative to its size
Sir David Attenborough warned on the programme that loss of the maned wolf population in the Cerrado could mean the end of the whole ecosystem
The Cerrado is being destroyed at twice the speed of the Amazon rainforest relative to its size.
Planet Earth III producer and director Kiri Cashell said that the deaths were not isolated incidents as filmmakers discovered from tracking collars that several others had been killed.
She added that the entire population of maned wolves in the Cerrado could be wiped out in just thirty years, a scenario which Sir David Attenborough explained on the programme could collapse the whole ecosystem.
Conservationists remain hopeful that a solution can be found to save the habitat.