Monday, February 22, 2010

Ocean Week on National Geographic Abu Dhabi

New technology charts one shark’s epic transoceanic journey and unique footage reveals previously unfilmed fascinating behaviours of Southern African fur seals
Premiering at 21.00 on Feb 22 with Ultimate Shark, Golden Seals of Skeleton Coast (Feb 23), Big Blue (Feb 24) and Shark Nicole (Feb 25).
Covering almost three quarters of the planet’s surface, the world’s oceans are home to hundreds of thousands of species of marine life, with potentially hundreds – if not thousands more – still undiscovered. But while many people have seen, crossed or perhaps even swam in one of the world’s ‘oceans’, few people have yet to grasp the sheer diversity of marine life – or even understand the incredible lives that some of these creatures lead – under the sea.
Premiering on February 22 at 21.00 (UAE) with Ultimate Shark, National Geographic Abu Dhabi takes viewers on a week-long marine adventure to discover the secrets and the majesty of the deep in Ocean Week; featuring unique footage that reveals astonishing behaviour of some marine animals, and new technology that charts the incredible underwater journeys of others.

Ultimate Shark is a different look at nature’s near perfect predator: the great white shark. With bloodlines going back 400 million years, they are older than dinosaurs and even trees. But only now are scientists starting to understand the true power of great whites. Ultimate Shark breaks down dramatic great white-human attacks and demystifies the true motives and power behind great white shark behaviour. Every minute is loaded with cutting edge science, state of the art graphics and gripping stories of great whites and the people who have survived their harrowing encounters.

Hear the story of a surfer in Australia who was struck by a great white, bitten on the arm and leg, had his surfboard bit in two and was dragged underwater as the shark towed him by his board’s ankle strap – and escaped with only minor injuries. In New Zealand, relive the bizarre story of a kayaker who was tracked by an 18-foot great white, who repeatedly bumped the kayaker’s boat for over an hour, and even launched itself out of the water – apparently placing its head on the back of the kayak! This isn't simply another collection of shark attack stories: at every turn, National Geographic showcases breakthrough science as it happens, revealing the predatory abilities and extreme engineering of great whites.

Each year the desolate shores of Southern Africa come alive to the breeding calls of a million seals. With unique footage showing previously unfilmed behaviour, Golden Seals of the Skeleton Coast follows the incredible life of a male Cape fur seal on an action packed journey from the chaos of the breeding colony to the dramas of the open ocean.

Born under the blazing sun of the desert coast of Namibia, National Geographic’s Cape fur seal is at once plunged into a life fraught with danger. For much of his first year, the pup is tied to the beach and is dependent upon his mother, whose frequent feeding forays out to sea leave him unattended and vulnerable. Later separated from her, he begins a journey that will take him on many adventures down the coast of Southern Africa and out into the open ocean. After ten years and a journey of almost three thousand miles, the male seal’s travels bring him back to the beach where he was born. But despite all the trials and tribulations that the Cape fur seals endure, every year they return to the beaches to mate. This year some of the pups that are just starting their own lifes’ adventures are particularly special - they are the progeny of the golden seal.
Shark Nicole is the deeply personal story of a super predator on an epic journey. This film odyssey, based on true events and scientific data, seamlessly weaves cutting edge science with engaging emotion in an experiential style that reveals a remarkable story. All the Earth’s oceans are home to the great white shark. But for an animal that’s so big and so feared, very little was known about its movements until researchers developed and refined a satellite tagging system. Now scientists can follow a single female shark on her epic adventure across the seas. Her incredible voyage will astonish the scientific world and rewrite the record books. Her name is Shark Nicole.

Armed with this powerful array of information, the scientists passionately explore the tantalising possibilities revealed by this astonishing transoceanic journey. Travel with Nicole through her underwater realm. See and feel her world through her eyes and senses - a magical world full of wonder, mystery, and danger.

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