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Life In Cold Blood (25th Feb 2008) (XVID) torrent
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This torrent was uploaded from www.TheBox.bz - the home of all British TV
Life In Cold Blood (BBC Documentary)[DVDRip]
Region: Region 2
Frame Rate: 25fps
Audio Bitrate: 192kbps
Sir David Attenborough brings viewers the final chapter of his epic overview of life on Earth, as he transforms perceptions of cold-blooded animals in this landmark series.
“Reptiles and amphibians are sometimes thought of as slow, dim witted and primitive. In fact, they can be lethally fast, spectacularly beautiful, surprisingly affectionate and extremely sophisticated,” says David.
Using the very latest in filming technology – including ultra-high-speed, thermal, miniature and on-board cameras – David reveals their surprising and intimate lives and discovers the secret of their success.
At the end of each episode, a 10-minute feature, Under The Skin, produced in collaboration with the Open University, examines the technology used by scientists.
The Cold Blooded Truth – Episode One.
David begins the story on the Galapagos Islands, among massed ranks of marine iguanas. Thermal imagery reveals how these lizards bask in the sun and then pour into the cold sea, as the accumulated heat powers their dives.
In California, side-blotched lizards fight for the best sun-baked rock-piles to use as radiators. Here, females choose the males with the hottest rocks as mates. Mediterranean wall lizards, meanwhile, bask on the bizarre dead horse arum flowers that produce living heat as a by-product of making a disgusting odour to attract flies.
Off the coast of South Africa, David finds a riot of reptiles – the highest concentration of angulate tortoises on Earth. They, too, sunbathe to power their hot-blooded jousting, using “lances” on the front of their shells. A “tortoise cam” reveals how they flip each other over in these vicious fights.
Reptiles can be sensuous, too – the tenderest courtship is, surprisingly, performed by the ultimate cold-blooded killer: the saltwater crocodile. The five-metre-long gigantic male gently caresses the much smaller female while blowing bubbles to reassure her.
David also meets a modern giant reptile that is an exception to the cold-blooded rule – the ancient leatherback turtle is the largest of living reptiles. As the female lays her eggs, thermal cameras reveal that her internal body temperature is above that of her surroundings.
Invaders Of The Land – Episode Two.
Among chorusing frogs in Panama, Sir David Attenborough asks how amphibians first managed to invade the land. The Australian lungfish, an ancient relative of the amphibians that can breathe air, and the giant Japanese salamander, one of the largest amphibians on Earth, give vital clues about their first tentative steps. These giant land invaders also demonstrate fiercely protective parenting skills.
In a disused goldmine, David finds salamanders that no longer need water. The mine walls glisten with dozens of female western slimy salamanders guarding their eggs and young. They are ready to put up a fight against other predatory hungry females, who see their young as a source of nourishment.
The primitive worm-like caecilians demonstrate parental care never filmed before. The mother produces a rich secretion and the young lap it up like milk and, more bizarrely, they also eat her skin, tearing at it like mini sharks. She is unharmed and regularly feeds her babies in this way.
But in some amphibians the fathers do the work. The male of the beautiful poison arrow frog, in Peru, carries each of his tadpoles on his back before depositing them into their own individual breeding pools. He guards them, and, when one needs feeding, calls in the female – leading her to the right pool, where she lays an infertile egg as food.
A TV first reveals the intensely protective parenting of the marsupial frog, in Australia, who guards his clutch of eggs until they are ready to hatch and then straddles them to allow the tiny white tadpoles to wiggle into two special pouches on his hips. He carries his growing family around for several weeks and then “gives birth” to tiny, perfect froglets.
In Panama, David meets the rare golden frog – filmed for the last time in the wild. It communicates with its rivals and mates by semaphore in the form of gentle hand waves.
Amphibians have even made it to the driest of places. The rain frogs in South Africa live underground, emerging from the soil when the first rains arrive. The males are too small to grasp the fat females so produce glue that helps them stick. Unfortunately, it makes them stick to other males, too. Once paired, the females dig underground – taking the tiny attached male with her. Below the soil, she makes a special chamber for her eggs and even secretes a moist foam to provide the young with their very own underground pond.
Finally, David ends up in the baking deserts of Australia. Even here, a desert spade foot toad can live without water for two years – living proof that amphibians have truly conquered the land.
Dragons Of The Dry – Episode Three.
From iguanas emerging out of a tropical swamp to a face-to-face encounter with a monitor lizard in the Australian desert, David Attenborough traces the lizards’ colonisation of the Earth as they ultimately became the Dragons Of The Dry.
The first step in their success was the evolution of hard shelled eggs. In Australia, lace monitors lay eggs in termite mounds leaving the babies with a problem when it comes to hatching – an adult has to dig them out. Once freed, like many small lizards, they take to the trees for safety.
Male jacky dragons use their tree perches to display by head bobbing and arm waving. Sometimes, they fight to back up their signalling and the loser admits submission with a slow arm wave. In Florida, David encourages an anole to display by using a mirror to simulate a rival. It head bobs and then flashes a vibrant red dewlap flap on its throat at the “imposter”.
But the real masters of colourful display are the chameleons. In Madagascar, David meets the smallest in the world – the minute pygmy leaf chameleon. In Malawi, there is a joust between two dinosaur-like Mellor’s chameleons and, in South Africa, a Cape dwarf chameleon gives birth to a litter of young in a tree. As the babies drop, their fall is broken by a sticky substance that catches on the branches.
The secrets of the chameleon’s hunting technique are revealed as the action is slowed down by up to 80 times using an ultra-high-speed camera. The tip of the tongue actually grasps and enfolds the prey.
New discoveries are also made about the elusive pygmy blue-tongued skinks. David tempts one out of its burrow with a fishing rod, and a special probe camera reveals the secrets of its underground family life. The babies remain with their mothers for weeks just like birds in a nest.
Less touching, but more dramatic, is the free-for-all mating frenzy of the brilliantly coloured South African flat lizards. Females are constantly harassed by ardent males and have to thrash them with their tails and flailing arms to keep them under control. Equally impressive are the bizarre wrestling bouts of the Mexican beaded lizards, which can last over an hour. Males circle and grasp each other, eventually locking together to form an arch while still trying to push each other over. The one that gains the most submissions is the winner.
Other lizards owe their success to deceit rather than strength. In South African deserts, baby bushveld lizards mimic the black and white warning colouration and stiff legged, hunched gait of a beetle. It serves as protection because this particular beetle has a very unpleasant form of defence. David experiences at first hand how it squirts acid at predators. Finally, he returns to the baking deserts of central Australia, home to the bizarre ant-eating thorny devil and the largest of Australian lizards, the 5ft-long perentie – a true Dragon Of The Dry.
Sophisticated Serpents – Episode Four.
David Attenborough examines the fascinating lives of the most misunderstood group of reptiles – the snakes – and reveals that their simplistic body design has contributed to their success. Snakes evolved from humble burrowing, legless lizards to become some of the most highly developed predators on Earth. In America, David spies on a timber rattlesnake as it hunts warm-blooded prey at night. A purpose-built camera traps and infrared cameras reveal the complex strategy used to set up an ambush. And, for the first time, the lethal strike is captured on camera in the wild.
Although venom is a lethally effective weapon, most snakes prefer not to bite as they can get hurt in the process. But, there are other ways to deliver venom as David demonstrates. Wearing a mask – to avoid being blinded – he tests the accuracy of a spitting cobra.
One of the biggest challenges for snakes is swallowing a large meal. An X-ray camera reveals the remarkable technique of an egg-eating snake as it devours, crushes and regurgitates an egg many times larger than its own head. More remarkable still is the shocking feat of a giant python swallowing a huge gazelle.
Giant male king cobras will fight over a mate but they have a “gentlemen’s agreement” not to use their potentially fatal bites. Instead, they sway in a hypnotic, rhythmic dance, trying to press each other to the ground. Mating king snakes also try and avoid fatal encounters, too. They eat other snakes and can identify friend from foe by following seductive scent trails. When a pair meets, the male soothes the female by vibrating his body alongside hers. Conveniently, he has two penises so can mate from either side.
After courtship comes birth, and the cameras capture a mammoth reptilian water birth as 15 live baby yellow anacondas are born and swim to the surface to take their first breath. David says: “These most sophisticated animals cope with life’s challenges and they do it with elegance and grace.”
Armoured Giants – Episode Five.
The intimate lives of some of the largest and most impressive animals alive today – crocodiles, turtles and tortoises – are revealed in Armoured Giants, the final programme in this landmark series. All of them are covered in thick scales that have turned into armour, yet, despite their tough exteriors, these animals are capable of astonishing behaviour and warm-hearted interaction. David Attenborough begins the story of these ancient armoured giants in the Galapagos Islands among the beautiful volcanic mists, where he finds the biggest and most long-lived of all reptiles – the giant tortoises. Observing the difficulties they face, David says: “Making love in a suit of armour is not easy.” Luckily, these tortoises have a solution – their shells are specially shaped so that the mating pair fit together like spoons.
Green turtles mate in the water and face a different problem. Filmed in exquisite detail, a mass of green turtles in a stunning tropical blue sea passionately fight for a mate. The tension increases as several males frantically jostle to attach themselves to the female, almost drowning her in the process. Eventually, the attacking males give up and the mating pair breaks free to take a life-saving breath of air.
In Australia, David reveals newly-discovered behaviour. On a flooded road by a small river, over 40 huge saltwater crocodiles gather and work together to feast on migrating fish. Just like bears feeding on salmon, they gather together especially for this event and dramatically pick off fish as they leap through the air. This is remarkable behaviour, since these crocodiles are highly territorial and have to suppress their aggression when they are massed together.
And there are surprising moments of compassion, too. Perhaps most touching of all is a female spectacled caiman, which has to escape the onset of a drought while looking after a whole cr?che of babies belonging to other caiman mothers. Their only chance of survival is if she can lead them on a migration across a parched wasteland fraught with danger. The female rises to the challenge and leads the youngsters to a new life-saving pool of water.
Finally, David concludes that the primitive reputation of reptiles and amphibians is far from the truth. In fact, they are very sophisticated – especially in the way they use energy. David says: “At a time when we ourselves are becoming increasingly concerned about the way in which we get our energy from the environment, and the wasteful way in which we use it, maybe there are things that we can learn from Life In Cold Blood.”
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