Once a mountain kingdom of ancient palaces and emperors, Korea in the 21st century is largely known for its modern cities and decades of conflict. Tensions between North and South may be what defines it to outsiders but beyond the battle scars there is another side to Korea. In the south are large pockets of untouched wilderness where extraordinary animals flourish and Koreans continue to practice age-old traditions in tandem with the seasons and with nature. It is in these connections, rather than in division, that we see the true Korea. At the southernmost tip of the peninsular we follow a pod of bottlenose dolphins through the volcanic islands of Jeju. They click at each other as they encounter a human in their midst, but the dolphins know this diver well - they have shared the ocean with the Haenyeo, or sea women, for thousands of years. We travel onwards to the isolated island of Marado, where three generations of sea women are preparing for a dive. Today is the start of the conch season, and they work hard whatever the weather to maximise their catch. In the grounds of an ancient palace on the mainland, a raccoon dog family takes advantage of a rare event. Just once every five years, hundreds of cicadas emerge from below ground providing an easy feast for the raccoon dogs who voraciously fill their bellies. Those that escape their jaws make for the safety of the trees, where they metamorphosise into their flying form. On the mud flats of Suncheon Bay we find a habitat that is neither land nor sea. Only recently has the ecological value of mudflats been recognised. A staggering 50 per cent of the earth's oxygen is produced by phytoplankton - microscopic algae that are found here in great abundance. That is why the mudflats are known locally as the lungs of the earth. Plankton is far from the only life here - the mud of the bay is rich in nutrients and supports one of the most diverse ecosystems on the peninsula. We follow the story of a young mudskipper who has emerged for his first mating season. His journey to find love is paved with obstacles.
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All life is driven by the need to breed. Yet for a few, the odds of success are overwhelmingly against them, so these have adopted the most extraordinary mating strategies of all.
S1E5 • The Mating Game • 2021 • Nature
David Attenborough reveals the bizarre adaptations which have helped amphibians break their ties with water as he meets marsupial frogs, show-off newts and giant salamanders.
S1E2 • Life in Cold Blood • 2008 • Nature
Take a nerve-wracking dive with great white sharks as they feast on millions of sardines that fall into their trap; it’s one of the most spectacular underwater phenomenons on the planet! Plus you’ll get to patrol reefs with vigilant soldierfish, dance with balletic jellyfish and more!
Part 5 • The Magic of The Big Blue • 2011 • Nature
Left to their own devices, birds have reached almost all ends of the Earth - still, humans can do many things to help their feathered friends.
S1E10 • The Life of Birds • 1998 • Nature
While dogs are said to share more than 99 per cent of their DNA with grey wolves, recent research has indicated that this link might actually be the key to why dogs have become the perfect family pet. The pack mentality of their lupine ancestors remains in domestic dogs, inspiring what seems to be a fierce loyalty to their human families,
3/3 • Secret Life of Dogs • 2016 • Nature
Jungles contain up to 90% of the world’s plant and animal species: flowering plants, trees, birds, fungi, reptiles, fish – their range and beauty is absolutely staggering. It is becoming clear that what affects the rainforest affects us all deeply.
2020 • Nature