Monthly Archives: August 2010

More than five years in the making, Planet Earth redefines blue-chip natural history filmmaking and continues the Discovery Channel mission to provide the highest quality programming in the world.

Award-winning actress and conservationist Sigourney Weaver narrates this 11-part series. You’ll be amazed by never-before-seen animal behaviors, startling views of locations captured by cameras for the first time and unprecedented high-definition production techniques.

If you enjoyed this documentary and want to buy the DVD off Discovery Channel’s online store and support the film-makers you can do that @


Pole to Pole
Follow the sun as it touches the lives of creatures across the planet, bringing a fresh understanding of how the world is interconnected. From African herds migrating hundreds of miles in search of water to desperate animal hunts, Pole to Pole examines how the seasons produce the greatest spectacles on Earth.

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Tour the planet’s mightiest mountain ranges and meet the rare animals that inhabit them. From a never-before-seen hunt by snow leopards on the treacherous slopes of the Himalayas to a family of pumas struggling to survive the unstable weather of the Andes, Mountains reveals life on the planet’s highest peaks.

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Deep Ocean
Explore the depths of the planet’s oceans and discover some of this mysterious world’s most spectacular species. From light shows performed by squids to the blue whale, the largest animal to ever exist, Deep Ocean investigates the waters that cover two-thirds of the Earth’s surface yet remain largely unknown.

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Voyage to the world’s harshest environments and learn how life manages to keep a precarious hold in every desert. From the llama-like guanacos of Chile’s Atacama Desert that survive by licking dew from cactus spines to lions that scour arid Namibia for antelopes, Deserts unravels the secrets behind survival in unimaginable conditions.

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Ice Worlds
Venture to the poles of our planet and find the harshest wild lands, where seasonal change is extreme. From emperor penguins which defy the coldest conditions on Earth to the polar bear that emerges from hibernation with her new cubs, Ice Worlds explores an ecosystem in which few could survive.

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Shallow Sea
Dive into the planet’s shallow waters where sunlight reaches the seabed and find an explosion of life. From the rarely seen cooperation between snakes and fish hunting for food to the journey of a humpback whale and her newborn calf traveling thousands of miles in search of food, Shallow Seas explores the rarely seen sights of the world’s mighty oceans.

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Great Plains
Trek to the Earth’s largest land habitats, where vast open spaces play host to the biggest groups of animals in the world. From the 2,000 mile migration undertaken by three million caribou in the Arctic tundra to a pride of 30 starving lions hunting elephants, Great Plains reveals the most impressive migrations and boldest hunts on the planet.

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Delve deep into this ecosystem, beyond the flourishing plant life, and find an environment that tests each animal’s survival skills. From the elaborate mating rituals of New Guinea’s birds of paradise to the territorial battles of chimpanzees, Jungles examines an environment that occupies only three percent of the planet and yet is home to more than half the world’s species.

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Fresh Water
Follow rivers as they course from mountain to the sea, nourishing unique and dramatic wildlife. From the world’s deepest lake inhabited by the only species of freshwater seal to a stunning look at the world’s highest waterfall, Fresh Water offers a unique perspective on the secret lives teeming in our purest waters.

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Seasonal Forests
Investigate these temperate regions and find some of the most elusive creatures and well-adapted plant life on Earth. From the giant sequoia tree ten times the size of a blue whale to the trackless Siberian forests where just 40 Amur leopards remain, Forests brings to life a seemingly familiar world that remains largely unexplored.

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Descend into the only habitat not directly driven by sunlight to discover some of the most peculiar creatures on Earth. From Borneo’s Deer Cave where five million bats roost to cave swiftlets that build nests from saliva, Caves digs deep into an underground world few people have ever explored.

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10,000 B.C. was a time of cataclysmic change on Earth. Extreme climactic fluctuations hurled the planet into a minor ice age; mega-fauna like the saber-toothed tiger and woolly mammoth were suddenly becoming extinct; and early humans began to inhabit North America.

Cold and hungry, their fragile communities undertook perilous hunting expeditions. The slaughter of a single mammoth, weighing nearly ten tons, could be the difference between survival and death.

JOURNEY TO 10,000 B.C. brings this unique and thrilling period to life, and investigates the geologic and climate changes that scientists are just beginning to understand.

In a major forensic investigation, History visits early human archaeological sites to uncover fossilized bones, ancient dwellings, and stone weapons, and uses state-of-the-art CGI to recreate the treacherous mammoth hunts and the devastating impact of a comet colliding with Earth.

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Release Date: March 13, 2010

A documentary about the UFO/Extra Terrestrial presence on earth. Evidence gathered the last 60 years, from all over the globe, and in numbers by hundred thousands, point to the undeniable fact that we are not alone and never have been alone.

The Extra Terrestrial presence in our world is no longer a question of IF, but rather a question of WHO, WHY and FROM WHERE. Air pilots, astronauts, radar personnel, flight controllers, military officials, security personnel and thousands upon thousands of eyewitnesses confirm that the ET and UFO phenomena are real.

A look upon remains from our ancient history tells the same. And the new sciences within quantum physics and cosmology defines a new concept of reality where intelligent life in the universe is most likely predominant, appearing in abundance, – a reality where space travel between stars and galaxies has no theoretical barriers.

But the Greatest Story in Human History is still keep a secret by those in power. Could it be that this system of secrecy now has grown to a size where it can no longer be contained? There is a growing notion that the bubble is about to burst, and that we are now in fact living the last days of the old world! The implications of a falling curtain are beyond everything humankind has ever experienced!

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Release Date: April 2, 2008

The Phoenix Lights is an exhaustively researched look at these mysterious and still unexplained phenomena, including the history, similar worldwide events, quotes by military, pilots, astronauts, scientists and even presidents confirming these anomalous visitations, the stunning connection between all Unexplained Phenomena [UPs], as well as Dr. Kitei’s own fascinating story and take on the wider implications of these remarkable events.

The Phoenix Lights (sometimes referred to as the “lights over Phoenix”) were a series of widely sighted optical phenomena (generally unidentified flying objects) that occurred in the skies over the U.S. states of Arizona and Nevada, and the Mexican state of Sonora on March 13, 1997.

A repeat of the lights occurred February 6, 2007, and was filmed by the local Fox News TV station.

Lights of varying descriptions were seen by thousands of people between 19:30 and 22:30 MST, in a space of about 300 miles, from the Nevada line, through Phoenix, to the edge of Tucson. There were two distinct events involved in the incident: a triangular formation of lights seen to pass over the state, and a series of stationary lights seen in the Phoenix area.

The United States Air Force (USAF) identified the second group of lights as flares dropped by A-10 Warthog aircraft which were on training exercises at the Barry Goldwater Range in southwest Arizona. Witnesses claim to have observed a huge carpenter’s square-shaped UFO, containing lights or possibly light-emitting engines. Fife Symington, the governor at the time, was one witness to this incident; he later called the object “otherworldly.”

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Release Date: July 28, 2010

What is the universe made of? If you answered stars, planets, gas and dust, you’d be dead wrong. Thirty years ago, scientists first realized that some unknown dark substance was affecting the way galaxies moved. Today, they think there must be five times as much dark matter as regular matter out there. But they have no idea what it is — only that it’s not made of atoms, or any other matter we are familiar with. And Dark Matter is not the only strange substance in the Universe — a newly discovered force, called Dark Energy, seems to be pushing the very fabric of the cosmos apart.

What is the Universe Made of?
By Chelsea Hedquist,

More Than Meets the Eye

The composition of the universe may seem straightforward, something you mastered back in your junior high science class — galaxies made up of planets and stars, stars made up of burning gases and dust. But this idea of the universe only includes the parts that we can see, either with the naked eye or even with powerful telescopes. According to scientists, the visible portions of the universe account for less than 95 percent of what is actually out there in the great expanse of space. Much of the universe is made up of something we can’t see. We call this something “dark matter,” and we only discovered its existence because something else was missing.

As they study the universe, astronomers often compute the mass of galaxies to help them estimate the mass of the universe, or how much matter exists in it. They do this by measuring the light reaching Earth from distant galaxies and use this measurement to extrapolate how many stars — and consequently how much matter — the universe contains. Scientists can also use a spectroscope to measure the Doppler shift, allowing them to determine how fast galaxies are rotating. With this information, they can calculate the mass of these galaxies.

In 1933, a Swiss astronomer named Fritz Zwicky made a surprising discovery while using these methods to compute the mass of a cluster of galaxies. When he used the galaxies’ rotational velocity to measure mass, he came up with a figure that was 400 times larger than the figure he came up with when he measured mass based on the galaxies’ light (or matter that he could observe). The inconsistency between calculations gave rise to what scientists today call “the missing mass problem.”

So the universe must be filled with much more matter than what can actually be observed. Scientists have termed this mysterious, unseen part of the universe “dark matter” and, despite years of research, they still understand relatively little about it.

Although scientists are still struggling to determine what dark matter is, precisely, they at least have some ideas about what it may be — more than they did back in the 1990s when some astrophysicists admitted they couldn’t find the bulk of the universe. For starters, they know that some of it might be ordinary matter, composed of protons, neutrons and electrons. In fact, it’s the kind of matter that we humans are made of. Astronomers call this baryonic matter. In the case of dark matter, it may come in one of a few (dimly lit) forms nicknamed massive compact halo objects (MACHOs) such as brown dwarfs, white dwarfs or black holes. But so far astrophysicists think these objects are too rare to solve the missing mass problem.

Instead, it seems likely that dark matter largely comprises “extraordinary matter,” new forms of matter composed of new types of particles. Cosmologists hypothesize that dark matter may actually be made up of particles that were produced shortly after the big bang. Scientists have dubbed these subatomic particles WIMPs (weakly interacting massive particles). WIMPs may be part of a supersymmetry of particles — meaning each known particle has a “superpartner,” such as axions and neutralinos, which many scientists point to as probable candidates for making up dark matter.

Recent observations have led to the important conclusion that, while the Earth may be round, the universe is actually flat. But scientists estimate that dark matter makes up only about 23 percent of the mass necessary to produce a flat universe, leaving more than 70 percent of the necessary mass still unaccounted for. Today, NASA scientists hypothesize that 72 percent of the universe is composed of dark energy, a different substance that we know even less about. This substance exerts a negative pressure on the universe, causing it to expand at an accelerated rate.

Much remains unknown about dark matter and dark energy — two substances unlike anything previously recognized in our universe that nevertheless make up the vast majority of it. But new advances in technology used to detect dark matter, as well as particle accelerator experiments, will likely bring scientists closer not only to answering the question “What is the universe made of?” but also to actually understanding that answer.

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