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Animal Planet to launch ‘Africa’ series in Jan

MUMBAI: Animal Planet is all set to bring a new series, ‘Africa’, for its viewers in the New Year. The show will present a revealing look at the continent from a different point of view.

Premiering on 7 January, the show will air at 8 pm every Wednesday. The documentary team behind the natural history series ‘Life’ returns with the show.

Four years in the making, ‘Africa’ will bring to life the continent as never seen before, including never-before-filmed species, animal behaviours and secret, natural wonders of the world.

It will take viewers to a secret location in southwest Africa to witness the last great rhinoceros gathering on Earth, filmed with a newly developed camera system that is operated using the light of the stars. It captures sound using microphones embedded around a watering hole.

The show will also present a teenage chimp in the Congo with a sweet tooth that drives her to perfect complicated honey-hunting techniques using four different tools, lizards who hunt for flies on the backs of sleeping lions in the Serengeti, and giraffes as two rival males in Namibia deliver sledgehammer-like blows on each other in a knockout fight for domination.

To capture on film these animal behaviours, the production team spent 1,598 days on location across 79 separate expeditions in 27 African countries. They utilised 21 different types of cameras to shoot over 2,000 hours of footage. Of the 553 cameras deployed throughout the series, only eight were lost or damaged beyond repair.

The team’s efforts are chronicled in the episode ‘Africa: the Making of…’ Other episodes of the series uncover newly discovered animal behaviours in the deserts of the Kalahari, the dense forests and snow-capped peaks of the Savannah, the Congo rainforest, the changing climate of the Cape and the parched Sahara desert.