Seven Worlds, One Planet
Seven Worlds, One Planet is a documentary series from the BBC Natural History Unit. The seven-part series, in which each episode focuses on one continent, debuted on 27 October 2019 and is narrated and presented by naturalist Sir David Attenborough. Over 1,500 people worked on the series, which was filmed over 1,794 days, with 92 shoots across 41 different countries.
|Seven Worlds, One Planet|
|Presented by||David Attenborough|
|Country of origin||United Kingdom|
|No. of episodes||7 (list of episodes)|
|Executive producer(s)||Scott Alexander|
|Running time||60 minutes|
|Original release||27 October –|
8 December 2019
|No.||Title||Produced by||Original air date||UK viewers|
|1||"Antarctica"||Fredi Devas||27 October 2019||8.98|
|Antarctica—the coldest, windiest, most hostile continent. Only the toughest can survive here. From Weddell seals that grind back the ice with their teeth, to colourful starfish carpeting the seabed beneath the ice. Huge colonies of king penguins crowd any ice-free land, and four tonne elephant seals fight for territory on the beach. Life comes here because the ocean that surrounds the continent is incredibly rich. However, the ocean here is warming and with that comes an uncertain future. Grey-headed albatross chicks battle for survival in the harsh gales of South Georgia, while southern right whales slowly recover from almost total annihilation at the hands of the whaling industry, and Gentoo penguins face a dangerous trek across uneven ice where leopard seals dwell. There is still hope for this ice-bound continent; thousands of penguins, seals, albatross, and over a hundred great whales feast on krill baitballs, whilst below the ice on the sea floor, an entire ecosystem of sea anemones, starfish, nudibranches, jellyfish and giant nematode worms live out their lives in the icy depths.|
|2||"Asia"||Emma Napper||3 November 2019||8.86|
|Asia—the most varied and extreme continent—stretching from the Arctic Circle to the equator. Walrus gather in huge numbers in the frozen north, only to risk falling to their deaths after climbing sea cliffs to escape polar bears. Brown bears roam remote Russian volcanoes on the Kamchatka Peninsula, and orangutans climb high into the trees in the Indonesian rainforests in search of mango fruit. This is a world of the rarely seen, from yeti-like monkeys in the mountain forests of China to the most bizarre predator in the baking Lut desert in Iran, the spider-tailed horned viper, which camouflages itself against the rocks, then tricks migrating birds into going after its specialised tail. In Northern India two male Sarada lizards compete to mate with a female. Asia is the largest of all continents but it seems there’s not enough space for wildlife, as humans are decimating Indonesia to create vast oil palm plantations. The deep jungles provide sanctuary for the last few Sumatran rhino, who are among the species being threatened by this activity the most and have been walled in for their own safety against poachers and loggers. However, human kindness also exists in the south-east, as fishermen regularly help groups of whale sharks by supplying them with some of their catch, in spite of the gigantic fish being worth a fortune in meat.|
|3||"South America"||Chadden Hunter||10 November 2019||8.44|
|South America—the most species rich continent on Earth. From the volcanoes of the Andes to the world’s largest rainforest, the Amazon, animals here must specialise to carve out a niche. In Patagonia, a puma mother draws on a lifetime’s experience to catch prey three times her weight. In the cloud forest, rarely seen Andean bears clamber thirty metres into the canopy to find elusive fruit. Poison dart frogs use ingenious methods to keep their tadpoles safe, whilst anacondas stalk capuchin monkeys. At Igauzu, swifts make death-defying flights through one of the biggest waterfalls on Earth.|
|4||"Australia"||Emma Napper||17 November 2019||8.28|
|Australia, a land cast adrift at the time of the dinosaurs. Isolated for millions of years, the weird and wonderful animals marooned here are like nowhere else on Earth. In its jungles a cassowary—one of the most dangerous birds in the world—stands six feet tall. Inland, kangaroos and wombats brave snowstorms and gum tree forests are filled with never-before-seen predators. In its red desert heart, reptiles drink through their skin and huge flocks of wild budgerigars swirl in search of water. On secret islands Tasmanian devils roam and offshore, thousands of sharks gather for a rare event.|
|5||"Europe"||Giles Badger||24 November 2019||8.53|
|Europe—this crowded continent hides the most surprising animals in pockets of wilderness. Above Gibraltar, Europe’s only primate lives a life of kidnapping and high drama, whilst in Vienna churchyard-dwelling European hamsters do battle with each other to feast on flowers and candle wax left at graves. Come nightfall, mountain villages in Italy's Apennine Mountains are the hunting grounds for rarely seen wolves, whilst Iberian lynx lurk in the forests of Spain. On the surface of the River Danube, voracious great white pelicans rob cormorants for their catches of fish. Deep underground in Slovenia’s caves, the Olm—a species of salamander once thought to be baby dragons—live for up to a hundred years, while every summer, Hungary's Tisza River is host to a miraculous display of a giant mayfly's fleeting life cycle. On the surface, Europe has been developed beyond recognition, yet human intervention means the Iberian lynx may yet recover; once on the brink of extinction, a combination of nature reserves and captive breeding programs means that 2019 was a highly successful year for the species, which numbers at over 700 individuals, compared to less than 200 in 2005.|
|6||"North America"||Chadden Hunter||1 December 2019||7.95|
|No continent experiences seasonal change as extreme as North America. From tornados that roar across the prairies, to Arctic air sweeping through the humid, southern swamps—this is a land where pioneering animals thrive. In winter, Canada lynx prowl the snowy Yukon for snowshoe hares, whilst Florida manatees and American alligators seek hot springs to escape the freeze. In the spring, prairie dogs and burrowing owls spend their time looking after their young while remaining wary of American badgers. In the creeks of Tennessee, fish build spectacular underwater pyramids to find a mate. Atlantic tarpons and blacktip sharks are unafraid of human swimmers while hunting grey mullet along Floridian beaches. Fireflies light up the forests during summer nights, roadrunners cruise the spectacular deserts of Arizona and polar bears on the shores of Hudson Bay have learned an ingenious new method to keep up with warmer summers, in which they leap from rocks to hunt beluga whales.|
|7||"Africa"||Giles Badger||8 December 2019||7.68|
|Africa—home to the greatest wildlife gatherings on Earth, but even in this land of plenty, wildlife faces huge challenges. In the jungles, young chimps learn to use tools to find food. On the savannah, a group of cheetah brothers team up to hunt prey twice their size. And, in crystal clear freshwater lakes, caring cichlid fish mothers are tricked by cuckoo catfish. Africa’s deserts are tough too. In the Namib Desert, hyena make long treks to find food on the beach, whilst in the Kalahari, the bizarre aardvark digs deep to find a meal. But for much of Africa’s wildlife the greatest threat comes from humans.|
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