Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Wild China - Shangri La

BBC Science and Nature Documentary

China is a vast country with an astonishingly diverse landscape. Through unprecedented access, this six-part series reveals the little-known natural treasures and secret wildlife havens of China's wildest regions.

Wild China episode 2 - Shangri La

Episode Two profiles the rich biodiversity of south-western Yunnan province.Forming the eastern boundary of the Himalaya,the Hengduan Mt.'s have buckled into a series of parallel ridges running north-south.The Nujiang River is one of a succession of deep gorges that carve their way through the mt.'s.In summer,monsoon rainclouds from the Indian Ocean are funnelled up the valleys, creating a unique climate in w/c species from the tropics can flourish at a more northerly latitude.Yunnan’s 18,000 plant species, of w/c 3,000 are found nowhere else, attracted Western botanists & explorers such as Joseph Rock. In the snowbound forests surrounding the pilgrimage site of Kawakarpo (6740m),rare Yunnan snub-nosed monkeys are filmed feeding on lichen. In the Gaoligong Mt.'s, tropical & alpine plants grow side by side. Birdlife filmed here includes sunbirds feeding on epiphytes & the courtship display of a Temminck's tragopan. The fruiting trees attract bear macaques & black giant squirrels, whilst China’s 250 remaining wild Asian elephants forage below. A bamboo bat colony is filmed at their roost inside a single stem;each bat is the size of a bumblebee.A giant elephant yam flower is pollinated by carrion beetles at night. Black crested gibbons are filmed in the forests of Wuliangshan.The people of Yunnan include the Dai, Hani & Jino tribes, each of whom regard the forests as sacred & harvest them sustainably,but modern times are bringing new threats such as rubber plantations & tourism

Watch Documentary; Wild China - Shangri La

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BBC Science and Nature

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