David Attenborough continues his search for the origins of flying animals, as he charts the rise of new, larger creatures – extinct reptiles that flew on wings of skin, dinosaurs that sprouted feathers to become the ancestors of birds, and gliding mammals that emerged from a life in the trees to dominate the night as bats. His journey spans the globe – from the rainforests of Borneo to see bizarre gliding animals, to China and its new discoveries of dinosaur fossils. Stunning CGI brings to life creatures that disappeared over 200 million years ago, and new filming techniques bring us closer than ever to the secrets of flight itself.
Category:Science Duration:50:54 Series: Conquest of the Skies
Ant colonies are one of the wonders of nature - complex, organised and mysterious. This programme reveals the secret, underground world of the ant colony in a way that's never been seen before. At its heart is a massive, full-scale ant nest, specially designed and built to allow cameras to see its inner workings. The nest is a new home for a million-strong colony of leafcutter ants from Trinidad. For a month, entomologist Dr George McGavin and leafcutter expert Professor Adam Hart capture every aspect of the life of the colony, using time-lapse cameras, microscopes, microphones and radio tracking technology.
Located beneath Russia's Ural Mountains, Orda Cave is legendary among divers for its unique beauty. The cave's waters are clearest in winter, when the land above lies frozen. With temperatures approaching minus 40 degrees, NHK attempts to film the cave for the first time ever using 4K cameras. Scientists give them insight into the cave's origins, enabling the crew to uncover the miraculous story of how the cave was naturally formed 300 million years ago by climate change and a shifting landscape.
The honey badger looks like something you might buy in pet shop and give to children, but turns out to be one of the most violent and determined creatures ever to scuttle across the face of the earth. Nothing in the badger’s world-not even the badgers themselves-are safe from its remarkable ability to create havoc and cause harm. Like a meter long skunk with the brain of a shark the Honey Badger’s metabolism compels it to eat constantly and live on the run. Its diet is admirably inclusive ranging from insects to its own young. If an animal is too big to eat then the badger will fight it anyway, indeed it is this almost supernatural tenacity that compels you respect it, as well as yielding some of the most spectacular sequences in the film. Five foot long cobra sleeping in the top of tree? No problem, the badger scoots up and bites its head off. When an ailing badger is attacked by a full size leopard it takes the leopard over an hour to finish it off. When one is bitten in the face by a snake that can kill a man, it just lies down for a while and sleeps it off.
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