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PBS spicing up its prime time lineup, or at least its packaging

This image released by PBS shows anatomist Joy Reidenberg with a baby kangaroo from the four-part series,

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This image released by PBS shows anatomist Joy Reidenberg with a baby kangaroo from the four-part series, "Sex in the Wild," premiering Wednesday, July 16, on PBS. (AP Photo/PBS)

NEW YORK, N.Y. - Normally staid PBS seems to be letting its hair down with two programs new to the prime-time lineup on Wednesday: "My Wild Affair" and "Sex in the Wild."

Hold off on the cold shower, though.

"My Wild Affair" is the colorful name for a summer series about humans who develop friendships with wild animals, like a rhinoceros rescued from a flood that lives at a veterinarian's suburban home and an orangutan raised as a human child and taught sign language.

Meanwhile, "Sex in the Wild" follows vets and scientists who study the mating and child-rearing habits of animals. The show features four different animals in four episodes, including a study of kangaroos in the Australian Outback.

"It's very PBS," noted Beth Hoppe, the public broadcasting service's chief programming executive.

"My Wild Affair" (8 p.m. EDT) and "Sex in the Wild" (10 p.m.) both focus on elephants for their debut episodes.

Under Hoppe's direction the past couple of years, the television home of "Downton Abbey" and Ken Burns has tried to be a little more responsive to events and promotion-minded. Hence, the attention-getting titles for programs that would feel right at home on Animal Planet.

"If you can get them in the tent, it's a good title," Hoppe said. "If you see the shows, they are educational and entertaining."

Both series run for four weeks, ending Aug. 6.

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Online:

http://www.pbs.org/

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