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The world’s wildest islands on Animal Planet

‘Wildest Islands’ explores the fascinating wildlife, remarkable people and epic landscapes of ten of the world’s most remote islands

BestMediaInfo Bureau | Delhi | April 10, 2013

Two-thirds of our planet is covered by water, and in each of our great oceans, seas, lakes, and rivers, islands are dotted everywhere. These countless islands vary not only in size and climate, but also by the types of organisms that inhabit them. Featuring a diverse palate of island types that ranges from tropical locales to the cold, harsh Arctic regions, ‘Wildest Islands’ on Animal Planet celebrates the world’s most spectacular isles. The show launched on April 6 and airs in the 8 PM slot.

A ten-part series, Wildest Islands explores the fascinating wildlife, remarkable people, and epic landscapes of ten of the world’s most remote islands and delves into what makes them special, exploring the history and extremes of life in these dramatic landscapes. Discover the natural beauty of the Galapagos and Sri Lanka, get lost in the countless islands of Japan and the Philippines, trek across the mountainous Vancouver Island, shelter in the windswept Falklands and journey through the isolated jungle islands of Brazil’s Rio Negro. Experience the extraordinary array of flora and fauna that these islands offer; from the wolves, bears, and orcas of Vancouver Island to the serows and snow monkeys in Japan.

Gain an in-depth understanding of these astonishing environments and experience the awe-inspiring sceneries, stunning details, and unique cultures that exist throughout the world’s Wildest Islands in the following episodes:

Japan: Islands of Extremes

 

Explore the unique array of Asian and Arctic species that inhabit Japan, an expansive chain of 6,852 islands stretching over 2,400 kilometers and covering a range of wildly diverse climatic zones including snow-covered mountains and steamy mangroves. This is home to wildlife not found anywhere else on Earth, including some of the planet’s hardiest species. Winter in Japan’s central and northern islands can be savage. In bleak, inhospitable conditions in Honshu, snow monkeys or Japanese macaques endure the bitter cold of Hell’s Valley by basking in warm volcanic pools.

Amazon River Islands: The Floating Forests

Learn about the amazing creatures that inhabit the thousands of isolated jungle islands spread along the Rio Negro and the Amazon River, the world’s largest freshwater archipelago. Stranded on the mighty Rio Negro, these islands are engulfed by seasonal floods changing their landscapes completely, so everything here is forced to adapt or die. At the heart lie the Anavilhanas and Mariua archipelagos surrounded by flooded forests and hidden dangers.

Under water for six months of the year, the islands are a mass of submerged trees and wandering vines. This is a world like no other; the forest floor becomes the river bed. Fish feed from the treetops and canopy dwellers like the three-toed sloth are stalked by creatures that lurk beneath. Only two primates live here - red howler monkeys and squirrel monkeys. They live among hunters like black caimans, piranhas and green anacondas. Over 200 species of birds live on the islands of Anavilhanas archipelago; some are busy in search of food, others in search of love. One bird that goes to great extremes to find a mate is the wire-tailed Manakin. The males participate in an incredible dance-off in an attempt to win the female’s affections.

Vancouver Island: Rivers of Life

In Canada’s British Columbia lies Vancouver Island, a vast and wild island with a backbone of jagged mountains running its length. The largest island off the west coast of North America, its glaciers fuel the flow of some of Canada’s tallest waterfalls and an endless network of rivers and creeks make it the ideal habitat for the Pacific salmon. Witness the remarkable journey of millions of salmon migrating up its rivers. The swarming fish attract not just black bears, but Steller sea lions, bald eagles and killer whales. Turkey vultures gather for the migration south as they head for warmer weather in winter.

Philippines: Islands of Mystery

The Philippine archipelago is made up of over 7,000 tropical islands and is a breeding ground for many rare animals. On the stunning island of Palawan, where craggy limestone cliffs poke out from the dense jungle, giant bugs roam the land. Predators line the edge of the forests, while rivers help carve one of the world’s most extensive cave systems, a subterranean cavernous world crowded with bats, whip scorpions, tarantulas, and other insects. This is the home of the mysterious bearcat, an animal that looks like a cross between a bear and a cat though related to neither and is as agile in the trees as a monkey.

Palawan’s prehistoric coastline is the hunting ground of marauding giant lizards which will indiscriminately devour anything they can catch. On the island of Bohol, gangs of macaques with a taste for the unusual ghost crabs raid the swamp-like mangroves. Behold an awe-inspiring phenomenon found rarely in nature: an incredible lightshow of green bioluminescence created as hundreds of thousands of synchronous fireflies gather at dusk to light up the forest. As darkness descends, the tarsier, one of the Philippines most enigmatic creatures, comes out to hunt.

Falkland Islands: Penguin Paradise

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