The Life of Mammals

BBC
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10 videos in this collection

A Winning Design
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…
Insect Hunters
When mammals first appeared, insects were abundant on earth, and mammals made meals of them. Crucially, they were the first creatures able to make and regulate their own body heat,…
Plant Predators
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…
Chisellers
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…
Meat Eaters
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…
Opportunists
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…
Return to the Water
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…
Life in the Trees
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…
Social Climbers
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…
Food for Thought
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…

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Insect Hunters
Part of the Series: The Life of Mammals
When mammals first appeared, insects were abundant on earth, and mammals made meals of them. Crucially, they were the first creatures able to make and regulate their own body heat, so they could hunt insects in the cool of the night, when most of the predatory dinosaurs were asleep.The modern…
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