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BBC commissions most ambitious natural history content

MUMBAI: BBC has announced what it says is its most ambitious and wide ranging commitment to natural history across television and online.

New programmes announced include new series that use innovative filming techniques from the latest 4 and 5k and high-speed camera technology to thermal imaging and moving slow motion to reveal new insights into animal behaviour, from a shark that glows in the dark to a hummingbird as fast as a space shuttle; programmes that take us right around the world and offer fresh insights into life across the planet, from Ireland – ‘The Wild Edge Of The World’ to the Savute Marsh for ‘Africa’s Fishing Leopards’ and to Death Valley in ‘The Wild West’; and ‘Dynasty’ due for 2018 which demonstrates the BBC’s on-going commitment to natural history and BBC’s strong pipeline of content into the future.

BBC DG Tony Hall said, “We’ve got the best back catalogue in the world and an exciting future ahead of us. Today I’m delighted to announce what I think is the most ambitious range of Natural History we’ve ever commissioned – with Sir David Attenborough going on some big new adventures for us.”

Following the launch of BBC Earth on bbc.com, the international version of bbc.co.uk last month sees the UK edition, bbc.co.uk/earth, go live.

Together with news and features that share new discoveries, BBC Earth in the UK will also focus on British wildlife, with a calendar of natural events, citizen science guides and activities that anyone can participate in. Visitors to the site will be able to explore stunning photo galleries and world-class videos that offer a new perspective on the world around us, including behind-the-scenes stories and photos taken by natural history film crews on location. There will be stories such as “The monkey that became a midwife” which includes never-seen-before footage and an explanation into why the monkey may have taken on this role, and photos of a tornado of budgies in Australia.

BBC Earth’s new digital platform aims to put audiences at its heart, allowing them to share features, images and content from the site and engage in conversation with others through the BBC Earth social media offering which include Facebook and Twitter. To mark the launch of the UK edition and celebrate this truly global digital platform, users can also explore a specially curated interactive feature – ‘Your Life on Earth’ – which invites individuals to discover how life on Earth has changed since their birth.

By simply putting their date of birth, height and gender, the interactive feature will reveal how they and the natural world around them has changed in their lifetime with more than 50 modules of content including how many times their heart has beaten since birth in comparison to a hummingbird or killer whale, how many species have been discovered and how old they would be if they lived on a specific planet. The bespoke ‘Your Life on Earth’ feature will be fully sharable on social media including Facebook, Twitter and Google+ either in its entirety or with the option to share each individual graphic.

BBC Earth follows a tradition of encouraging people to capture and share their own experiences of the natural world, through shows such as ‘Springwatch’. Photos and video captured by the British public will be hosted on the BBC Earth website. The hope is to continue to ignite a passion for the world, and let BBC audiences play a role in creating new digital natural history ‘unmissable moments.’