Europe: A Natural History

Europe: A Natural History

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Ratings: 7.63/10 from 40 users.

Europe: A Natural HistoryA stunning four-part series, charting the dramatic events which have shaped the ever-changing landscapes and wildlife of Europe.

Genesis. An epic three billion year story begins, with the unraveling of clues as to how Europe's stunning landscapes and wildlife were created.

Witness Oxford roamed by dinosaurs, the Jura vineyards of France swallowed under tropical seas, St Petersburg buried under desert sands and the mightiest event of all, the birth of the Mediterranean.

Ice Ages. Over the past two million years Europe has been swept by waves of extreme climatic change. Two kilometer thick ice sheets carved their way across the continent, reaching as far south as London, Amsterdam and Berlin. Mammoths wandered the North Sea, and even lions and hippos roamed Trafalgar Square. Then, shortly before the last great Ice Age released its grip, our ancestors set foot on the continent.

Taming the Wild. In the last 10,000 years Europe has been transformed from a largely forested, virgin landscape in to the manicured continent we know today, and at an ever-accelerating rate. As culture spread its influence across the land with monumental symbols of ownership, animals were tamed, seeds were sown, forests decimated and minerals excavated. How did wildlife cope with these drastic changes, and what impact did they have on ourselves?

A New Millennium. Today, some 730 million people live in Europe. How is wildlife adapting to this brave new world, who are the winners and losers, and what efforts are we making to help? And ultimately, given the problems with unwelcome and invasive species on the continent through international trade, and an increasingly fickle climate, the future could bring all sorts of surprises.

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madscirat
madscirat
12 years ago

Cool doc, worth the watch. If you're short on LULZ scroll down and watch the idiots turn it into a debate on religion.

parthenonas
parthenonas
12 years ago

amateur mix up salad

jimmyjammer66
jimmyjammer66
12 years ago

People spouting there religous garbage should shut up and wake up, the bible is a fairytale grow up already and face the facts

Arnie
Arnie
12 years ago

This was a beautifully photographed series of Europe and the changes that have taken place over the past 300 million years.

Accustomed to seeing nature programs about North America it was a nice change to go to Europe and Eastern Europe. There was a lot of new information presented with regards to past climate change and movement of the continents that explains the geography and mineral riches in Europe today.

It was also nice to learn the extent of river cleanup that is going on today to bring back wildlife and restore streams to their former glory.

The only mistake I came across in the series is the 3rd program and the reference to the Black Death / Plague in Europe being caused by rats. There has been a lot of new recent research that has been done that has been changing this old point of view.

It is now believed that the Justian Plague around 536 - 545AD and the Black Death of 1348-1350AD was due to asteroid swarms that hit the Earth. The asteroids it is now believed, impacted the ground causing both earthquakes and poisoning the air with sulphur and ammonium gases and exploded in the air poisoning the air with sulphur and ammonia gas in addition to blocking out the sun rays.

The foul air killed the people who breathed it in. The comet debris in the atmosphere blocked of the sun's rays eventually leading to crop failure, weakened the population from starvation, who then later were very susceptible to disease.

This new look at the Justian Plague around 536-545AD and the Black Death of 1348-1350AD has come about because there are very few if any rat skeletons. The spread of the rats is too fast and the flees causing the infections would be dormant in the winter time when the Black Death struck.

Google search:

1. Dark Ages - Did a comet impact cause a global catastrophe around 500 A.D.
2. New Light on the Black Death - The Cosmic Connection
3. The Dark Ages : Were They Darker Than We Imagined?
4. Don’t blame rats for the Black Death, new book argues

These are some of the articles that I came across on scholars researching and investigating accounts from 500-600AD and 1340-1350AD and trying to figure out what really happened during the Dark Ages and times of serious plague.

Herr Schadenfreude
Herr Schadenfreude
12 years ago

Sieg! And don't you dare come back you little bitch.

silverrigger
silverrigger
12 years ago

listen every one all religion is a form of control and always has been, and as for the bible thumpers commenting out there check out the gnostic gospels, there were 12 diciples not the four in the new testament. know your song before you start singing, the new testament was put together by the roman emperor constantine 325 years after christ, that would be like me sitting down and writing an indepth biography on cromwell having never known or spoken to him.
religion has had two thousands years now, personally i think its time to listen to nature and the spirit there in i dont need a building or any one book the gospel of thomas says the kingdom of god is within you and all around you wake up and see god for what it is energy which can not be created or destroyed long live science, especially quantum physics which in the not to distant future will unite spirtuality and science as one and the same

AndyA121
AndyA121
12 years ago

Go and watch it yourself. it's on the site.

RileyRampant
RileyRampant
12 years ago

great doc. screw all the yammering about christ, pro and con.

that had NOTHING to do with the doc. most of the historical background was the shortest of shorthand. the focus was on the ecosystem, geophysics, flora & fauna.

just let the idiots blather. you start blathering back, you get a blatherfest going. which is all the idiots know how to talk about anyhoo. let 'em.

AndyA121
AndyA121
12 years ago

But I am being objective . I look at both sides.

Herr Schadenfreude
Herr Schadenfreude
12 years ago

Sieg!

The brat has abandoned his hastily prepared dung-work position in face of our relentless onslaught of Scientific truth and has been driven, bushy tail firmly between stubby legs, back over the dark borders of the ignoble pit that spawned him. Good riddance.

I found my share of amusement this week satisfactorily sated.

So back on topic, does anyone here know of a research article, with visual chart representation detailing global sea levels and land exposed, from the time of the Last Glacial Maximum ice age, that doesn't call upon Wikipedia as a source? I've seen a documentary video voice narrated by Avery Brooks a while ago, but I would like something visual that I could print out. Much appreciated.

Yavanna
Yavanna
12 years ago

I only just watched the doc which was quite good but now I`ve read the comments I`m really confused.

If Andy's god poured water on his cookie wouldn't it just turn into a mushy doughy puddle? Not break apart as he suggested? Also as I understand it cookies in this universe are flat so the analogy indicates Andy is also a Flat Earther.....

Anyway I`ve always thought of God as being a bit of a dunker. That would make more sense - why would any rational God pour water over his cookie anyway??!!

Rolf Bruner
Rolf Bruner
12 years ago

AndyA121 is a Tit.

Herr Schadenfreude
Herr Schadenfreude
12 years ago

How cute, he thinks he's on trial, what he really should be pleading is ignorance, especially because one usually pleads against self incrimination, you know the FIFTH amendment of the U.S. Constitution. Just digging yourself deeper...

AndyA121
AndyA121
12 years ago

o.k. I plead the 1st amendment.

AndyA121
AndyA121
12 years ago

You are talking about religion, I am talking about God outside of man-made religion.

AndyA121
AndyA121
12 years ago

Do you know why they can't disprove the resurrection of Christ?

AndyA121
AndyA121
12 years ago

Carbon dating has been know to be unreliable for many years now.Everybody parrots. So what is wrong with gathering info from a creationist website? Sometimes I get info from secular websites too.Should it really matter so much, if all we are looking for is the truth?

AndyA121
AndyA121
12 years ago

Criticizing the messenger doesn't change the message. The truth still stands gentlemen.

AndyA121
AndyA121
12 years ago

But it is not Pure antidote when they come up with the same name of the person that engineered the ark in an altogether different continent on the other side of the world does it?Ancient civilizations such as (China, Babylonia, Wales, Russia, India, America, Hawaii, Scandinavia, Sumatra, Peru, and Polynesia) all have their own versions of a giant flood and it goes right along with the Biblical description.
Just like computer science, medical info, and other info is updated, it is the same with flood.
So what do they call that when everyone else has basically the same story?

[nwcreation.net/noahlegends.html]

Herr Schadenfreude
Herr Schadenfreude
12 years ago

When it rains it pours - not floodwater mind you, just an endless wave of closed minded feverish religious fanatics with an agenda to push to validate their own beliefs.

I always found it amusing just how holy scripture is trumpeted as "absolute," "infallible" and "immutable truth incarnate," even with so many different competing versions the Bible existing, each claiming to be the sole legitimate, perfect and final word of divinity. Never mind the other religious texts out there, each with their followers and detractors.

So it brings no small amount of comfort in knowing that no matter what vague, or explicit threats of "damnation", or "punishment" are thrown around, like morality stories told at night to scare children into behaving, or hopelessly idiotic attempts to bring down Scientific progress to their level, there is comfort in knowing that Mathematical and Scientific thought is truly universal and immutable. No matter who you are, what you believe in and what theories your faction follows, once proven, axioms such as; one plus one equals to two and a host of natural laws that govern the universe are all truths not subject to change.

While academics such as Earthwinger and the like admirably professes dialogue towards this intended audience in order to provoke intelligent thought and discourse, along with no small amount of chuckles thrown in for good measure for the rest of us to enjoy, it's sadly done on deft ears. Fanatics are by definition extremists, zealots do not listen and certainly have no mind to challenge and scrutinize their thoughts and beliefs in order to prove that they can hold true. They may read your valid and sound comments, but they sadly don't, or can't think for themselves and one can not expect a reasonable reply in kind and it would be naive to expect otherwise.

In closing, by the immortal words expressed by author Philip K. Dick; "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away."

-Just enjoy the documentary.

Guest
Guest
12 years ago

Don't stop now guys, I want to know about the other parts of the elephant :)

AndyA121
AndyA121
12 years ago

Yes, I know about the continental drift theory which is only part of the elephant.That still doesn't account for the worldwide flood that happened in Noah's time of which there are mountains of evidences in ancient writings and even landscapes such as the Grand Canyon, etc.
So if they did find an ark on the top of Mt Ararat would that change your mind? Actually.This is not about religion but real life and real history.

Morthund
Morthund
12 years ago

sometimes I wonder how the hell I ever ended up in Norway of all places but then again, it's in Scandinavia and you can get away from people really easily over here

now, reading further down, you can maybe see how people can have that effect on me

Guest
Guest
12 years ago

Wow, you must have bad cookies :)

Domus Canus.
Domus Canus.
12 years ago

Sparkling documentary. I loved the lulling sound of Sean Pertwee's voice, a perfect match for this delightful offering. It's not often I say Bravo! to the BBC, but this time I am happy to do so.

AndyA121
AndyA121
12 years ago

You know they alway come off with this "billions of year ago" thing . How could they ever come up with a number like that? Right, they've got very good imaginations. The earth is the way it is because of God and Noah's flood.
If you look at a world map you can see how all the pieces of land ,if put together form one land mass. Just take a big cookie and pour liquid on it and it will break up in the same way just like the flood. I don't have all the answers, but I believe my answer is sound.

Earthwinger
Earthwinger
12 years ago

Two episodes in, and if I'm honest, before I started watching, I was all ready to dislike this, as the BBC has put out so many docs. using CGI, it's almost as if they're looking for excuses to use it nowadays. I was very pleasantly surprised though, as the CGI bits aren't overly intrusive, and at times really help to get an idea of scale, especially in part two, with the glacier over London.

And then there's the commentary! Getting Sean Pertwee in to do the job was an inspired choice. His perfectly pitched voice is just sublime, and tops off what turns out to be a very slick, very entertaining, and informative series.

I like it.....I like it a lot! :)

Gary MacDonald
Gary MacDonald
12 years ago

Looking forward to watching the full series. Cold outside, good food, GF at my side, the world is a better place. Since we are both Uber-Geeks, we approve of this Series!

norlavine
norlavine
12 years ago

Day off work, raining outside, just finishing up watching Genesis and loving everything about it. Educational entertainment for all ages, brilliantly edited footage with the smoothest,non intrusive narration. The effect is almost at times surreal.