11-part series begins October 7, 2009 airing on Wednesdays at 10 pm ET/PT and Sundays at 6 pm ET
Experience the planet as never before with the most ambitious factual series ever produced about the planet earth. Created by the BBC and shot entirely in high definition, this groundbreaking eleven-part series is the ultimate portrait of the planet, providing an unparalleled view of the world's finest landscapes and incredible footage of creatures that could never be filmed in the wild before.
Four years in the making, the world's premier wildlife cameramen have travelled all over the planet, from the world's greatest rivers and impressive gorges to the mightiest mountains - from the hidden underground world of caves and caverns to vast deserts - to bring viewers a new perspective on some of the planet's most iconic habitats. Imagine the Gobi Desert covered in snow; the view from the top of Angel Falls. Planet Earth contains long powerful sequences that have never been filmed before, delivering revelation and wonder in every episode.
Narrated by the legendary Sir David Attenborough and accompanied by a musical score from multiple Academy Award nominee George Fenton, Planet Earth blends the best of the visual and musical worlds to bring viewers unprecedented footage of some of nature's greatest spectacles.
Included are huge migrations caught on camera, sand storms and plagues of locusts filmed in full force, and animals and landscapes caught on film for the first time. Planet Earth reveals that there is so much of the planet that has not yet been explored on television.
Part 1: FROM POLE TO POLE
Wednesday October 7 at 10 pm ET/PT & Sunday October 11 at 7 pm ET on CBC-Newsworld
The ultimate portrait of our planet looks at the key factors that shape our natural history. The sun and fresh water dominate the lives of all animals and plants on Earth and trigger seasonal migrations, small and large.
In the Arctic spring, a mother polar bear and cubs emerge from their winter den. They have just two weeks to cross the frozen sea before it melts and they become stranded. Share the most intimate and complete picture of polar bear life ever filmed.
For more than three years, time-lapse cameras captured the annual transformation created by the Okavango floods. The latest technology and aerial photography enables us to track some of the greatest mass migrations, following prey and predators on truly epic journeys.
Part 2: MOUNTAINS
Wednesday October 14 at 10 pm ET/PT & Sunday October 18 at 7 pm ET on CBC-Newsworld
Welcome to an extreme landscape of rock, ice and snow. We tour the mightiest mountain ranges, starting with the birth of a mountain at one of the lowest places on Earth and ending at the summit of Everest. Find out how some of the most secretive animals rise to the challenge of mountain life.
Share one of Earth's rarest phenomena, a lava lake that has been erupting for over 100 years. The same forces built the Simian Mountains where we find troops of gelada baboons nearly a thousand strong. In the Rockies, grizzlies build winter dens inside avalanche-prone slopes and climb the peaks to devour abundant summer moths. In another world first, the programme brings us astounding images of a snow leopard hunting on the Pakistan peaks.
Part 3: FRESHWATER
Wednesday October 21 at 10 pm ET/PT & Sunday October 25 at 7 pm ET on CBC-Newsworld
Fresh water is our most precious resource and it defines the distribution of life on land. Follow the descent of rivers from their mountain sources to the sea. Watch spectacular waterfalls, fly inside the Grand Canyon and explore the wildlife below the ice in the world's deepest lake.
Witness unique and dramatic moments of animal behaviour: a showdown between smooth-coated otters and mugger crocodiles; deep-diving long tailed macaques; massive flocks of snow geese on the wing and a piranha frenzy in the perilous waters of the world's largest wetland.
Part 4: CAVES
Wednesday October 28 at 10 pm ET/PT & Sunday November 1 at 7 pm ET on CBC-Newsworld
The Cave of Swallows in Mexico is a 400m vertical shaft, deep enough to engulf the Empire State Building. The Lechuguilla cave system in the USA is 193km long and 500m deep with astonishing crystal formations hanging from its chambers.
Although often overlooked, caves are remarkable habitats with equally bizarre wildlife. Cave angel fish cling to the walls behind cave waterfalls with microscopic hooks on their flattened fins. Cave swiftlets navigate by echo-location and build nests out of saliva. The Texas cave salamander has neither eyes nor pigment. Unique access to a hidden world of stalactites, stalagmites, snotites and troglodytes brings a wealth of surprises.
Part 5: DESERTS
Wednesday November 4 at 10 pm ET/PT & Sunday November 8 at 6 pm ET on CBC-Newsworld
Around 30% of the land's surface is desert, the most varied of our ecosystems despite the lack of rain. Unravel the secrets of desert survival and experience the ephemeral nature of this dynamic environment. Watch Saharan sandstorms nearly a mile high and desert rivers that run for a single day.
In the Gobi Desert, rare Bactrian camels get moisture from the snow. In the Atacama, guanacos survive by licking dew off cactus spines. In the USA, the brief blooming of Death Valley triggers a plague of locusts 65km wide and 160km long. A unique aerial voyage over the Namibian desert reveals elephants on a long trek for food and desert lions searching for wandering oryx.
Part 6: ICE WORLDS
Wednesday November 11 at 10 pm ET/PT & Sunday November 15 at 6 pm ET on CBC-Newsworld
The Arctic and Antarctic experience the most extreme seasons on Earth. Time-lapse cameras watch a colony of emperor penguins, transforming them into a single organism. The film reveals new science about the dynamics of emperor penguin behaviour. In the north, unique aerial images show a polar bear swimming more than 100km. Diving for up to two minutes at a time. The exhausted polar bear later attacks a herd of walrus in a true clash of the Titans.
FoxPart 7: GREAT PLAINS
Wednesday November 18 at 10 pm ET/PT & Sunday November 22 at 6 pm ET on CBC-Newsworld
After filming for three years, Planet Earth finally captures the shy Mongolian gazelle. Only a handful of people have witnessed its annual migration. Don't miss the bizarre-looking Tibetan fox, captured on film for the first time. Over six weeks the team follow a pride of 30 lions as they attempt to hunt elephants. Using the latest night vision equipment, the crew film the chaotic battles that ensue at close quarters.
Part 8: JUNGLES
Wednesday November 25 at 10 pm ET/PT & Sunday November 29 at 6 pm ET on CBC-Newsworld
Jungles cover roughly three per cent of our planet yet contain 50 per cent of the world's species. High-definition cameras enable unprecedented views of animals living on the dark jungle floor. In the Ngogo forest the largest chimpanzee group in the world defends its territory from neighbouring groups. Other jungle specialists include parasitic fungi which infiltrate an insect host, feed on it, and then burst out of its body.
Part 9: SHALLOW SEAS
Wednesday December 2 at 10 pm ET/PT & Sunday December 6 at 6 pm ET on CBC-Newsworld
A humpback whale mother and calf embark on an epic journey from tropical coral paradises to storm ravaged polar seas. Newly discovered coral reefs in Indonesia reveal head-butting pygmy seahorses, flashing 'electric' clams and bands of sea kraits, 30-strong, which hunt in packs. Elsewhere plagues of sea urchins fell forests of giant kelp. Huge bull fur seals attack king penguins, who despite their weight disadvantage, put up a spirited defence.
Part 10: SEASONAL FORESTS
Wednesday December 9 at 10 pm ET/PT & Sunday December 13 at 6 pm ET on CBC-Newsworld
The Taiga forest, on the edge of the Arctic, is a silent world of stunted conifers. The trees may be small but filming from the air reveals its true scale. A third of all trees on Earth grow here and during the short summer they produce enough oxygen to change the atmosphere. In California General Sherman, a giant sequoia, is the largest living thing on the planet, ten times the size of a blue whale. The oldest organisms alive are bristlecone pines. At more than 4,000 years old they pre-date the pyramids. But the baobab forests of Madagascar are perhaps the strangest of all.
Part 11: OCEAN DEEP
Wednesday December 16 at 10 pm ET/PT & Sunday December 20 at 6 pm ET on CBC-Newsworld
Life goes to extraordinary lengths to survive this immense realm. A 30 tonne whale shark gorges on a school of fish and the unique overhead heli-gimbal camera reveals common dolphins rocketing at more than 30km an hour. Descending into the abyss, deep sea octopus fly with wings and vampire squid use bioluminescence to create an extraordinary colour display. The first ever time-lapse footage taken from 2,000m down captures eels, crabs and giant isopods eating a carcass, completely consuming it within three hours.