From east to west, via mountains, volcanoes, deserts, lakes and Arctic ice, this breathtaking series uses stunning cinematography to chart the dazzling natural wonders of this vast country. Accounting for around 10 per cent of the world’s dry land, Siberia is famous as a brutally cold place. Yet it is home to a diverse range of habitats and animal life – including musk deer, camels, gazelles and the extraordinary Siberian salamander, which can spend years encased in -40°C ice and still survive.
Category:Nature Duration:48:00 Series: Wild Russia
The documentary series reveals the extraordinary riches and wonders of the Polar Regions that have kept people visiting them for thousands of years. Today, their survival relies on a combination of ancient wisdom and cutting-edge science. Most Arctic people live in Siberia, either in cities like Norilsk - the coldest city on earth - or out on the tundra, where tribes like the Dogan survive by herding reindeer, using them to drag their homes behind them. On the coast, traditional people still hunt walrus from open boats - it is dangerous work, but one big walrus will feed a family for weeks. Settlers are drawn to the Arctic by its abundant minerals; the Danish Armed Forces maintain their claim to Greenland's mineral wealth with an epic dog sled patrol, covering 2,000 miles through the winter. Above, the spectacular northern lights can disrupt power supplies so scientists monitor it constantly, firing rockets into it to release a cloud of glowing smoke 100 kilometres high. In contrast, Antarctica is so remote and cold that it was only a century ago that the first people explored the continent. Captain Scott's hut still stands as a memorial to these men. Science is now the only significant human activity allowed; robot submarines are sent deep beneath the ice in search of new life-forms, which may also be found in a labyrinth of ice caves high up on an active volcano. Above, colossal balloons are launched into the purest air on earth to detect cosmic rays. At the South Pole there is a research base designed to withstand the world's most extreme winters. Cut off from the outside world for six months, the base is totally self-sufficient, even boasting a greenhouse.
Category:Culture Duration:59:00 Series: Frozen Planet
We will nvestigate the first skeleton that really looks like us –Turkana Boy– an astonishingly complete specimen of Homo erectus found by the famous Leakey team in Kenya. These early humans are thought to have developed key innovations that helped them thrive, including hunting large prey, the use of fire, and extensive social bonds. The program examines an intriguing theory that long-distance running –our ability to jog– was crucial for the survival of these early hominids. Not only did running help them escape from vicious predators roaming the grasslands, but it also gave them a unique hunting strategy: chasing down prey animals such as deer and antelope to the point of exhaustion. Birth of Humanity also probes how, why, and when humans' uniquely long period of childhood and parenting began.
Category:History Duration:53:02 Series: Becoming Human
Travelling forward in time to 30,000 years ago, it's the middle of an ice age. The landscape is dominated by mighty mammoths, living side-by-side with woolly rhinos, giant deer and two separate species of human. The programme follows the fate of a herd of mammoths in their annual struggle against the harsh ice-age conditions. Every summer they spend on the grassy plains of what will one day become the bottom of the North Sea, but every winter they are forced to head for the less exposed valleys further south. It is a journey fraught with danger: mammoths can get trapped in frozen bogs, and the herd must run the gauntlet of hunters like cave lions and the deadly Neanderthals.
Category:Science Duration:28:32 Series: Walking with Prehistoric Beast
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