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About the show

The mysteries of nature uncovered

David Attenborough presents three fascinating series looking at extraordinary creatures that have kept him baffled for years.

From the peculiar patterns on a zebra to the evolutionary quirk of the egg-laying platypus, each episode of series one explores the stories behind two natural curiosities that are linked in some way. David reveals why the narwhal has inspired art and the mythical unicorn, why one animal has a particularly long neck and why another animal has really wrinkly skin.

Combining David’s brilliant storytelling skills and his passion for nature, this documentary reveals the secrets behind some of nature’s most curious animals.

Host

David Attenborough - Profile Image

Sir David Attenborough

Sir David Attenborough's career as a broadcaster and naturalist has endured for an impressive 60 years. His accessible storytelling has inspired generations to learn more about the natural world and brought to life all creatures great and small on our television screens.

He joined the BBC as a trainee producer in 1952. While working on the Zoo Quest series (1954-64), he gained his first opportunity to undertake expeditions to remote parts of the globe to capture intimate footage of rare wildlife in its natural habitat.

He moved into management as Controller of BBC2 in 1965, during which time he introduced colour television to Britain, and then served as Director of Programmes for the organisation from 1969 to 1972. In 1973, he abandoned administration altogether to return his great passion – making natural history documentaries.

His stable of landmark BBC series include Life on Earth (1979), The Living Planet (1984), The Trials of Life (1990), The Private Life of Plants (1995), Life of Birds (1998), Life of Mammals (2002), Life in the Undergrowth (2005), Life in Cold Blood (2008) and First Life (2010).

He has received honorary degrees from many universities across the world, and is patron or supporter of many charitable organisations, including acting as patron of the World Land Trust, which buys rainforest and other lands to preserve them and the animals that live there.

He is the only person to have won BAFTAs for programmes in black and white, colour, HD, and 3D formats.

Next on...

Episode 1, Series 2

Monday July 16 at 06:00

Virgin Birth

Sir David Attenborough examines the unusual ways in which Komodo dragons and aphids reproduce. 1/10

Episode 2, Series 2

Tuesday July 17 at 06:00

Armoured Animals

David examines how hedgehogs and rhinos have developed protective skins in this episode about armoured animals. 2/10

Episode 2, Series 2

Wednesday July 18 at 05:35

Armoured Animals

David examines how hedgehogs and rhinos have developed protective skins in this episode about armoured animals. 2/10

Episode 3, Series 2

Thursday July 19 at 06:00

Life in the Dark

David examines the unusual eyes of squid and owls, both of which can see in the dark. 3/10

Episode 4, Series 2

Friday July 20 at 06:00

Curious Imposters

David reveals animals that rely on other species, from cuckoos planting their eggs in other birds' nests to the death's-head hawkmoth stealing honey. 4/10

Episode 4, Series 2

Saturday July 21 at 05:35

Curious Imposters

David reveals animals that rely on other species, from cuckoos planting their eggs in other birds' nests to the death's-head hawkmoth stealing honey. 4/10

Episode 5, Series 2

Monday July 23 at 06:00

Bad Reputations

David Attenborough takes a look at gorillas and vampire bats in this episode about creatures with bad reputations. 5/10

Episode 6, Series 2

Tuesday July 24 at 06:00

Shocking Senses

David Attenborough reveals how naturalists first found out that electric eels were capable of generating a natural charge. 6/10

Episode 6, Series 2

Wednesday July 25 at 05:35

Shocking Senses

David Attenborough reveals how naturalists first found out that electric eels were capable of generating a natural charge. 6/10

Episode 8, Series 2

Friday July 27 at 06:00

Spinners and Weavers

David Attenborough examines creatures that spin and weave, contemplating the history of silk production and its romantic origins in China. 8/10

Episode 8, Series 2

Saturday July 28 at 05:35

Spinners and Weavers

David Attenborough examines creatures that spin and weave, contemplating the history of silk production and its romantic origins in China. 8/10

Episode 4, Series 1

Monday July 30 at 05:35

A Curious Twist

David looks at how the narwhal's tusk has inspired art and the myth of the unicorn, and why it is still a conundrum. 4/5

Episode 9, Series 2

Tuesday July 31 at 06:00

Strange Parents

David reveals why male seahorses give birth and looks at how hyena packs are dominated by the female members. 9/10

Episode 9, Series 2

Wednesday August 1 at 05:35

Strange Parents

David reveals why male seahorses give birth and looks at how hyena packs are dominated by the female members. 9/10

Episode 1, Series 3

Wednesday September 12 at 21:30

Impossible Feats

A look at whether some seemingly impossible facts about the animal kingdom are truths or myths. 1/6

Episode 2, Series 3

Wednesday September 12 at 22:00

Curious Minds

Orang-utans were considered as just clever mimics until a discovery in remote Sumatran swamps revealed their true potential. 2/6

Episode 1, Series 3

Thursday September 13 at 02:45

Impossible Feats

A look at whether some seemingly impossible facts about the animal kingdom are truths or myths. 1/6

Episode 2, Series 3

Thursday September 13 at 03:05

Curious Minds

Orang-utans were considered as just clever mimics until a discovery in remote Sumatran swamps revealed their true potential. 2/6

Episode 1, Series 3

Thursday September 13 at 10:40

Impossible Feats

A look at whether some seemingly impossible facts about the animal kingdom are truths or myths. 1/6

Episode 2, Series 3

Thursday September 13 at 11:05

Curious Minds

Orang-utans were considered as just clever mimics until a discovery in remote Sumatran swamps revealed their true potential. 2/6

Episode 1, Series 3

Thursday September 13 at 15:40

Impossible Feats

A look at whether some seemingly impossible facts about the animal kingdom are truths or myths. 1/6

Episode 2, Series 3

Thursday September 13 at 16:05

Curious Minds

Orang-utans were considered as just clever mimics until a discovery in remote Sumatran swamps revealed their true potential. 2/6

BBC Earth

Be curious. Be inspired. Be amazed.

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South African audiences have access to five BBC TV channels: BBC Brit, BBC Lifestyle, BBC Earth, CBeebies and BBC World News.