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The Private Life of Plants: Travelling

   1994    Nature
Sir David Attenborough reveals plants as they have never been seen before - on the move and dangerously devious. About the major problems of life - growing, finding food, reproduction - and the varied ways plants have evolved to solve it. Filmed from the plant's point of view, using computer animations, fibre-optics and unique time-lapse photography. The first episode looks at how plants are able to move". The bramble is an aggressive example: it advances forcefully from side to side and, once settled on its course, there is little that can stand in its way. An altogether faster species is the birdcage plant, which inhabits Californian sand dunes. When its location becomes exposed, it shifts at great speed to another one with the assistance of wind — and it is this that allows many forms of vegetation to distribute their seeds. While not strictly a plant, the spores of fungi are also spread in a similar fashion. One of the most successful (and intricate) flowers to use the wind is the dandelion, whose seeds travel with the aid of 'parachutes'. They are needed to travel miles away from their parents, who are too densely packed to allow any new arrivals. Trees have the advantage of height to send their seeds further, and the cottonwood is shown as a specialist in this regard. The humidity of the tropical rainforest creates transportation problems, and the liana-species Alsomitra macrocarpa is one plant whose seeds are aerodynamic 'gliders'. Some, such as those of the sycamore, take the form of 'helicopters', while others, such as the squirting cucumber release their seeds by 'exploding'. Water is also a widely used method of propulsion. The tropical sea bean Entada gigas has one of the biggest fruits of all plants and is dispersed by water streams. However, most plants use living couriers, whether they be dogs, humans and other primates, ants or birds, etc., and to that end, they use colour and smell to signify when they are ripe for picking.
Series: The Private Life of Plants

Conquest

   2010    Science
Attenborough's journey continues in Canada's Rocky Mountains, where fossils document an explosion in animal diversity never seen before or since. Travelling from there to North Africa, the rainforests of Australia and the east coast of Scotland, Attenborough discovers how animals evolved to conquer not only the oceans but also the land and air. These remote and fascinating creatures are brought to life as never before with the help of cutting-edge scientific technology and photorealistic visual effects. From the first large predators to the first legs on land, these were creatures that evolved the traits and tools that allow all animals, including ourselves, to survive to this day.
Series: First Life

Amazon Jungle

   2005    Nature
A visit to the Amazon jungle - the world's largest rainforest and home to the widest variety of plants and animals on Earth. he diversity of life in the jungle is so great that in just two square miles scientists have counted 3,000 varieties of ants, 530 types of birds and 11 species of monkey. But despite the huge range of life that flourishes here, survival is never easy.
Series: Wild South America

Congo

   2013    Nature
The very heart of Africa is covered in dense tropical rainforest. The animals that live here find the most ingenious ways to carve out their space in a claustrophobic landscape. Danger lurks in every shadow, but some animals thrive here, from honey-stealing chimps to birds with a lineage as old as the dinosaurs, thundering elephants and kick-boxing frogs. Here in the Congo, no matter how tough the competition, you must stand up and fight for yourself and your patch.
Series: Africa with David Attenborough

Life: Plants

   2009    Nature
Plants' solutions to life's challenges are as ingenious and manipulative as any animal's. Innovative time-lapse photography opens up a parallel world where plants act like fly-paper, or spring-loaded traps, to catch insects. Vines develop suckers and claws to haul themselves into the rainforest canopy. Every peculiar shape proves to have a clever purpose. The dragon's blood tree is like an upturned umbrella to capture mist and shade its roots. The seed of a Bornean tree has wings so aerodynamic they inspired the design of early gliders. The barrel-shaped desert rose is full of water. The heliconia plant even enslaves a humming bird and turns it into an addict for its nectar.
Series: Life
Racism: A History
Racism: A History

   2007    Culture
A Traveler Guide to the Planets
A Traveler Guide to the Planets

   2010    Science
U2 Live at the Rose Bowl
U2 Live at the Rose Bowl

   2010    Art
Cosmos
Cosmos

   1980    Science
Fleetwood Mac Live in Boston
Fleetwood Mac Live in Boston

   2004    Art
Living Universe
Living Universe

   2018    Technology
Blue Planet II
Blue Planet II

   2017    Nature