7 years ago

“We know more about the surface of Mars than we do about the deepest parts of our seas.”

Blue Planet II, a new seven part landmark series narrated by Sir David Attenborough - BBC One.

Yesterday, BBC One aired Ep. 2 from Blue Planet II. The images are more stupefying than many science fiction films I’ve seen. With the always unique following words, episode 2 ‘The Deep’ from the series starts with the narration of Sir David Attenborough:

“Antarctica, the coldest, the harshest and the most remote continent on earth.  No human being has ever descended into the dept that surround it. Until now. The deep ocean is as challenging to explore as Space. We know more about the surface of Mars than we do of the deepest parts of our seas… 

Now we can dive these uncharted depths to discover what secrets lie beneath… 

Sinking down beside the submerged wall of an iceberg, we enter an unforgiving world. These waters are the coldest on earth. As we descend into the deep, the pressure increases relentlessly. And the light from above all but disappears.

Yet incredibly, there is life here…

We might have expected that deep beneath the surface of the polar seas – the waters would be truly barren. But in fact, we find life here in unimaginable abundance. Nor is such great abundance can find to antarctic waters. Currents carry this richness into the depths of almost every ocean around the world. Astonishingly in the deep sea there is more life than anywhere else on earth… 

The sunlight fades, and the seas darken. Here in the pacific 200 meters down. We enter an alien world. The twilight zone, a sea of eternal gloom. There are strange creatures here… ” 

Have a look below and take a deep breath.  Blue Planet II, the new seven part landmark, debuted Sunday 29th October on BBC One.

Blue Planet II, BBC 1 — awe-inspiring TV series is a visually ravishing world tour of our deepest oceans. By Suzi Feay – ft.com – Life & Arts

“Blue Planet did an incredible job back in 2001, but with so many scientific discoveries in the oceans since then, along with advances in technology, we now possess a whole new understanding of life beneath the waves.” Mark Brownlow (Series Producer ‘Blue Planet 2’​ at BBC Natural History Unit)

Sub vs shark At a depth of 700 metres, a Blue Planet II sub is shoved by some enormous sixgill sharks.

Watch the episode via BBCIplayer here – The Deep Blue Planet II, Series 1 Episode 2 of 7

Or watch “The Deep” –  Blue Planet II, Series 1 Episode 2 of 7 via dailymotion below

Watch the “One Ocean” – Blue Planet II, Series 1 Episode 1 of 7 via dailymotion below

The Blue Planet II team spent 500 hours in a submarine to film what lives in our oceans

The deep is perhaps the most hostile environment on earth, at least to us – a world of crushing pressure, brutal cold and utter darkness. We have barely begun to explore it, and yet it is the largest living space on the planet. Scientists already think that there is more life in the deep than anywhere else on earth. This episode takes us on an epic journey into the unknown, a realm that feels almost like science fiction. We discover alien worlds, bizarre creatures and extraordinary new behaviours never seen before.

We encounter savage hordes of Humboldt squid hunting lanternfish in the depths and coral gardens flourishing in absolute darkness, with more species of coral to be found in the deep than on shallow tropical reefs. On the desert wastes of the abyss, a whale carcass generates a frenzy as slow-moving sharks as big as great whites fight for what may be their first meal in a year. Food is hard to come by and finding a mate is even harder, but life adapts in ingenious ways. There are fish that walk instead of swim, worms that feed exclusively on bones and shrimps that spend almost their entire lives imprisoned with their mate in a cage of crystal sponge. The deeper you go, the more extreme conditions become.

The sheer weight of water above creates almost unendurable pressures. Yet even eight kilometres down, where the basic chemistry of life was once thought impossible, we find strange species swimming through the darkness. From here we journey on down to the deepest place on earth – the Mariana Trench – almost 11 kilometres from the surface, a vast chasm that ruptures the deep sea floor. Only three human beings have ever reached here, and yet there is still life to be found in these deep sea trenches. The deep can be a violent place. Tectonic plates rip apart or collide in mighty clashes. And at these volcanic hotspots, extraordinary micro-worlds blossom into life, completely divorced from the energy of the sun.

Hair-covered crabs feed on gushing plumes of otherwise toxic hydrogen sulphide. Shrimps hover on the fringes of billowing clouds of volcanic chemicals, so hot they could melt lead. We discover new species every time we visit these strange new worlds. One of these geysers might even hold the secret to all life on earth. At a hydrothermal vent system in the middle of the Atlantic, seawater and rock react under extreme pressures and temperatures to produce complex hydrocarbons – the building blocks of life itself. Scientists have named this strange place the Lost City, and many believe that it was at a place just like this that life on earth first began, four billion years ago.

Dive deeper to see how Blue Planet II was made