The BBC and David Attenborough have done it again. Four years in the making, Frozen Planet looks absolutely stunning. Check out this trailer:
Just to whet our appetites, the Beeb has been releasing snippets of the footage. This video of a thieving penguin has been making the rounds:
Beautifully done. But the most breathtaking footage I’ve yet seen has not been available anywhere but in the UK. (I watched it using a VPN proxy.) It shows a pod of orcas, or killer whales, working in concert to create and send a wave of water sloshing over an ice floe, in order to knock off the Weddell seal resting on it. Once in the water, the seal has little chance of escape.
As with many things that Attenborough’s team accomplish, this behavior had never been filmed before. Heck, almost nobody had even seen it before. His justifiable delight shows in an interview with The Guardian:
“The filming of killer whales tipping ice floes and knocking seals off was an unbelievable achievement, unbelievable,” he tells me with enormous pride. “Vanessa [Berlowitz, the series producer] devised this system in which you had a small inflatable boat and mounted it on a tripod with this extraordinary giro-controlled stabiliser that was originally used for helicopters. And this thing that Scott had put down as a rumour, that killer whales were threatening sailors, and that a lot of people had discounted, she for the first time worked out how it was done, and as a consequence she filmed it not just once but 22 times, and so you’ve got this sequence which is just amazing!”
I agree with him, it really is amazing. If you have access to a VPN proxy, go here and watch it (but only if you don’t mind seeing predation). I’ll keep my eye on it, and as soon as the BBC makes it available to other countries, I’ll post it here.