Insect Hunters
Part of the Series: The Life of Mammals

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Insect Hunters
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Opportunists
Part of the Series: The Life of Mammals
When it comes to food most mammals are specialists - some eat nothing but termites, some just seeds, others eat only flesh, and one species, the giant panda, relies almost exclusively on bamboo. But, there is an alternative strategy for feeding. Instead of being a specialist you can be a…
Return to the Water
Part of the Series: The Life of Mammals
As the first signs of life left it's watery environment to colonize dry land the race was on in the search for food. After millions of years the increasing competition to survive made some mammals take one of the greatest steps in evolution - they returned to the water. Retaining…
Life in the Trees
Part of the Series: The Life of Mammals
An emergent tree in a tropical forest can grow to over forty metres high. The first branch may be twenty metres from the ground. A slip from this height would almost certainly be fatal.To make matters worse, branches may break without warning, or the tree may blow over. But, though…
Social Climbers
Part of the Series: The Life of Mammals
The most brilliantly coloured of all mammals are our relatives the monkeys.The scarlet face of a Uakari and bright blue bottom of a Mandrill, are matchless. But colour-vision first gave this group another advantage up in the trees - finding ripe fruits and leaves. Hanging from a rope high in…
The Life of Mammals
BBC
An epic tale of survival. David Attenborough introduces us to the most diverse group of animals ever to live on Earth, from the smallest - the two-inch Pygmy Shrew, to the largest - the Blue Whale; from the slowest - the sloth, to the swiftest - the cheetah; from the…
Meat Eaters
Part of the Series: The Life of Mammals
From the very first time mammals walked on the planet there has been both hunter and hunted.The pressure to evolve speed, endurance and maneuverability has helped them to outwit each other and occupy their very own niche. For the first mammalian hunters that came down from the trees their small…
A Winning Design
Part of the Series: The Life of Mammals
David Attenborough makes a world-wide journey of discovery in search of fascinating mammals to illustrate why they are so incredibly successful and diverse.Watching an arctic fox hunting at 20 degrees below, he observes... 'The only reason that it and I don't freeze solid up here is that we are both…
Plant Predators
Part of the Series: The Life of Mammals
Some of the biggest predators to walk the earth face a constant battle - their prey is heavily armoured, often indigestible, sometimes even poisonous, and what makes this struggle between predator and prey the more remarkable is that these predators do not prey on animals, but on plants.... Although we…
Chisellers
Part of the Series: The Life of Mammals
Plants usually protect the goodness inside their seeds with very hard outer cases - as David Attenborough testifies after he has tried and failed to crack open a tropical nut by bashing it with a rock.'Believe it or not' he proclaims 'there are mammals here in Panama which can break…
Food for Thought
Part of the Series: The Life of Mammals
Human beings appear to be unique amongst mammals - we live in huge cities, we walk on two legs and we have language. But how far have we really come from our mammal heritage? Are we really as different as we think from other mammals? To answer these questions we…
Elephants
Part of the Series: Sex in the Wild
Joy and Mark travel to Africa to explore the unique reproduction challenges of the largest animal on land -- the elephant. Find out how females select the strongest mates, why elephants have the longest pregnancy in the animal kingdom and how they safely deliver a 220-pound baby; witness the remarkable…
Orangutans
Part of the Series: Sex in the Wild
Joy and Mark travel to Borneo to explore the reproduction challenges of our close cousin -- the orangutan. The largest tree dwellers on the planet, orangutans mate, give birth and raise their young high in the jungle canopy. At an orangutan sanctuary in the rainforest, Mark and Joy come face-to-face…