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Virunga

   2014    Nature
A group of brave individuals risk their lives to save the last of the world's mountain gorillas; in the midst of renewed civil war and a scramble for Congo's natural resources." Virunga National Park in the Congo is a place of unique natural beauty. It is the home to a plethora of wonderful animals and vegetation but as is so often the way, it has several serious problems that threaten it. It's the location of human violence, corruption and exploitation. The disasters that specifically loom are two different groups, the M23 and SOCO International. The former are a violent rebel force who engages in an ongoing civil war with the Congolese government and the latter are a British energy company who specialise in oil exploration. Both M23 and SOCO invade the park in their own ways and neither seems very interested in the laws that have been set up to protect the flora and fauna that exist there, far less the people who live there. It seems hardly surprising in the case of M23, as they are a paramilitary organisation who can hardly be expected to be concerned with such things but it is the more legitimate big business SOCO who seem more worrying if anything. We discover in fact that they have been involved in a bribery campaign, utilising M23 as enforcers. It's a very murky situation where big money walks all over an impoverished nation and disregards a natural space that they can see no value in in their pursuit of financial profit.

Ape Genius

   2008    Science
The great apes which include chimps, orangutans, gorillas and bonobos, seem to have rich emotional lives similar to our own. But just how smart are these animals? A new generation of investigators are converging on an explanation for why the non-human great apes never made the breakthrough into an accelerating human-style culture that builds on the achievements of previous generations.

Life: Primates

   2009    Nature
Intelligence and adaptability allow primates to tackle the many challenges of life, and this is what makes our closest relatives so successful. This resourcefulness has enabled primates to conquer an incredible diversity of habitat. Hamadryas baboons live on the open plains of Ethiopia in groups up to 400 strong. Strength in numbers gives them some protection from potential predators. But, should their path cross with other baboon troops, it can lead to all-out battle, as males try to steal females from one another, and even settle old scores. Japanese macaques are the most northerly-dwelling primates and they experience completely different challenges. Some beat the freezing conditions by having access to a thermal spa in the middle of winter. But this privilege is only for those born of the right female bloodline. For western lowland gorillas, it's the male silverback that leads his family group in the rich forests of the Congo basin. He advertises his status to all with a powerful chest-beating display. Most primates are forest dwellers, and one of the strangest is the tarsier – the only purely carnivorous primate. As it hunts for insects the tarsier leaps from tree to tree in the dead of night, using its huge forward-facing eyes to safely judge each jump. Good communication is essential for success in primate society.
Series: Life

Walking with Cavemen: Blood Brothers

   2003    History
'Blood Brothers' follows the lives of two species, Paranthropus boisei and Homo habilis who embody two alternative ways of ape-man life. Although heavyset, with distinctive gorilla-like faces, the boisei are gentle characters. They live within a strict social structure and are led by a dominant male whose strength and power holds the group together. The habilis have taken a different approach to survival. They don't have the specialisms of the boisei but instead have developed into the archetypal jack-of-all-trades, inquisitive scavengers prepared to try almost anything to survive. Tough, active, gregarious and noisy, they are always on the move and always alert to the possibility of a meal. But in the near drought of the dry season the habilis are struggling. It seems as if their way of life cannot help them when conditions are tough.
Series: Walking with Cavemen

Tales by Light Wild

   2015    Art
In the fourth episode of the series, legendary nature and cultural photographer Art Wolfe captures the great brown bear with the stunning backdrop of Alaska’s mountains and glaciers, immigrating wildebeests in the plains East Africa, and the hard-to-find gorillas of Uganda.
Series: Tales by Light
Elvis Presley: The Searcher
Elvis Presley: The Searcher

   2018    History
The Nazis, A Warning From History
The Nazis, A Warning From History

   1997    History
Leaving Neverland
Leaving Neverland

   2019    Culture
The Human Body
The Human Body

   1998    Medicine
Natural World
Natural World

   2017    Nature
The Last Dance
The Last Dance

   2020    Culture
The Men Who Built America
The Men Who Built America

   2012    History
Putin: A Russian Spy Story
Putin: A Russian Spy Story

   2020    History