Congo Africa


Congo

Similar Content

Browse content similar to Congo. Check below for episodes and series from the same categories and more!

Transcript


LineFromTo

The very centre of Africa.

0:00:350:00:37

And the centre of two million square miles of dense tropical rain forest.

0:00:420:00:47

At first glance it seems deserted and eerily still,

0:01:000:01:07

not an easy place to live.

0:01:070:01:10

MONKEY CHATTERS

0:01:120:01:13

But in fact, there is a greater concentration of animals here

0:01:200:01:25

than anywhere else in Africa.

0:01:250:01:27

And in this world, they must grab every opportunity.

0:01:330:01:37

Competition is intense and unrelenting.

0:01:380:01:43

TREE CREAKS

0:01:430:01:44

Even the forest itself fights its corner with spines

0:01:460:01:51

and poisonous sap.

0:01:510:01:53

Here, every living thing must fight for its space.

0:01:580:02:02

Such beauty.

0:02:200:02:21

But the flower is self-serving,

0:02:250:02:27

enticing animals into an unwitting alliance.

0:02:270:02:31

Stingless bees.

0:02:310:02:33

They have to work hard.

0:02:330:02:35

The forest flowers make them do so by rationing their nectar,

0:02:350:02:39

forcing each bee to visit and so pollinate

0:02:390:02:42

at least a thousand blooms each day.

0:02:420:02:45

For the bees, it's worth the effort.

0:03:010:03:04

They need the nectar to make honey, which they store in pots.

0:03:040:03:08

It's so precious, they keep it hidden beneath the bark of a tree.

0:03:080:03:12

But their secret is out.

0:03:250:03:26

MONKEY HOWLS

0:03:260:03:27

Nothing is safe in this forest.

0:03:360:03:39

Chimpanzees love honey.

0:03:560:03:58

She seems oblivious to danger.

0:04:090:04:12

A fall from up here could be fatal.

0:04:120:04:15

But she does need a bigger stick.

0:04:180:04:20

Only a chimp has the ability to break into a stingless bees'

0:04:460:04:50

nest as well hidden as this.

0:04:500:04:52

Chimps are extremely intelligent,

0:04:570:05:00

but none is born with the skill to use a tool.

0:05:000:05:03

Youngsters like this one must learn by watching.

0:05:130:05:18

She uses special tools, one after another,

0:05:470:05:51

to get all the honey she can,

0:05:510:05:53

and in a few minutes, she destroys what took the bees years to build.

0:05:530:05:58

In the rainforest, nothing is safe.

0:06:070:06:11

MONKEY HOWLS

0:06:160:06:18

Here in the Congo,

0:06:180:06:20

there can be as many as 500 trees crammed into every acre.

0:06:200:06:25

In the battle for space,

0:06:250:06:28

some will rise to over 60 metres high in just a few decades.

0:06:280:06:32

In a valley like this,

0:06:380:06:40

there could be close on 1,000 different species of tree.

0:06:400:06:44

Up here, the crowns barely touch.

0:06:480:06:51

Each tree seems to respect its neighbour's space.

0:06:510:06:55

When they germinate down on the forest floor, young trees

0:06:590:07:03

and plants are less restrained.

0:07:030:07:05

But every new generation fights it out,

0:07:080:07:11

in battles we can see by accelerating time.

0:07:110:07:14

They must get light if they are to survive and they squeeze,

0:07:160:07:20

crush and even slash one another in order to reach it.

0:07:200:07:26

Despite the thick canopy above, some sunlight does filter through

0:07:460:07:51

and allows a few low-light specialists

0:07:510:07:54

to bloom near the forest floor.

0:07:540:07:56

Down here there are animals, too, that seek out the sunlight.

0:08:250:08:30

The forest's largest predator.

0:08:400:08:42

A female rock python.

0:08:450:08:47

Her body is five metres long, weighs 100 kilos and has 4,000 muscles

0:08:500:08:55

that she uses to crush the life out of her victims.

0:08:550:09:00

But right now, her need is not for food. It's for warmth.

0:09:020:09:07

She finds a rare patch where a shaft of sunlight strikes the ground

0:09:140:09:19

and she begins to bask.

0:09:190:09:21

She's cold-blooded,

0:09:250:09:27

so this is the only way she can raise the temperature of her body.

0:09:270:09:31

But now she's becoming very warm indeed,

0:09:350:09:38

more than ten degrees hotter than usual.

0:09:380:09:42

At 40 degrees centigrade, she's in danger of killing herself.

0:09:420:09:46

Just in time, she moves off.

0:09:500:09:53

She disappears below ground.

0:10:000:10:03

This is her nest and it's full of giant eggs.

0:10:130:10:19

It's critical for the eggs development

0:10:230:10:26

that they stay above 30 degrees.

0:10:260:10:28

Here in this special filming burrow, she gently wraps her super-heated

0:10:340:10:38

body around the eggs, passing onto them the warmth of the sun.

0:10:380:10:43

She has done this every day for three months.

0:10:490:10:53

The repeated heat stress on her body is so great it could be lethal,

0:10:540:10:59

and at the very least, it will take three years for her to

0:10:590:11:03

recover from incubating this one clutch of eggs.

0:11:030:11:07

Her parchment-shelled eggs carry the pressed imprint of her scales -

0:11:290:11:34

an indication of the strength of her embrace.

0:11:340:11:38

At last, her efforts are rewarded.

0:11:460:11:49

But the babies can't stay here. They must leave their sanctuary

0:12:070:12:11

and find food in the tangled world above.

0:12:110:12:14

They're over 60 centimetres long, already big enough to be

0:12:430:12:47

a threat to the smaller inhabitants of the forest.

0:12:470:12:50

But they are themselves vulnerable.

0:12:530:12:55

Particularly to other snakes.

0:12:580:13:00

But this one is their mother.

0:13:040:13:06

Unusually for snakes,

0:13:060:13:08

her maternal instincts continue for days after her eggs hatch.

0:13:080:13:12

Even so, the forest is such a dangerous place that only

0:13:230:13:27

one in 100 of her youngsters is likely to reach adulthood.

0:13:270:13:31

Just occasionally,, the competition eases.

0:13:370:13:41

A tree suddenly produces fruit.

0:13:440:13:47

It's a magnet for the creatures of the canopy, and they, in turn,

0:13:510:13:55

as they feed, create a bonanza for those on the ground below.

0:13:550:13:59

CHIMP SNORTS

0:14:070:14:09

A mob of red river hogs.

0:14:210:14:23

HOGS SNORT AND SNIFF

0:14:230:14:25

They have travelled over two miles through the thick undergrowth

0:14:260:14:30

to get to this fall of fruit.

0:14:300:14:32

But in the African forest, little comes for free.

0:14:320:14:36

This feast is a bribe.

0:14:400:14:42

The hogs will carry the seeds in their stomachs

0:14:450:14:48

and deposit them far from the parent tree.

0:14:480:14:51

Night falls.

0:15:060:15:08

But one living community, which is neither animal nor plant

0:15:100:15:14

continues its never ending work in the darkness.

0:15:140:15:17

This ground is alive with fungi that digest all the litter

0:15:240:15:29

discarded by the forest.

0:15:290:15:30

Some rare fungi do so with enzymes that are luminous.

0:15:380:15:41

The local people call them "chimpanzee fire."

0:15:490:15:53

Without the fungi, the dead vegetation would pile so high

0:15:590:16:02

the living trees would be submerged.

0:16:020:16:05

Dawn, and a new day reveals just how much control the jungle

0:16:240:16:28

has over its own environment.

0:16:280:16:31

The forests of the Congo are the lungs of Africa.

0:16:350:16:38

As they use the sunlight to build their tissues,

0:16:380:16:41

so they release oxygen and water vapour into the air.

0:16:410:16:44

Each hectare of forest produces, as vapour,

0:16:500:16:54

almost 190,000 litres of water a year.

0:16:540:16:57

So much that it creates its own weather.

0:16:590:17:03

Clouds blanket the forest, driving up the humidity and temperature.

0:17:060:17:10

A storm is brewing.

0:17:120:17:14

The Congo might be the richest part of Africa,

0:17:170:17:21

but it's also the most violent.

0:17:210:17:24

ROARING THUNDER

0:17:390:17:40

BOOMING THUNDERCLAP

0:17:420:17:44

Each year, as many as 100 million lightning bolts

0:17:500:17:54

strike the forest.

0:17:540:17:55

That's more than anywhere else in the world.

0:17:550:17:58

BOOMING THUNDERCLAP

0:17:580:17:59

And with the lightning comes the rain.

0:18:050:18:08

Up to 95% of the rain that falls here

0:18:160:18:20

is generated by the forest itself.

0:18:200:18:22

ROLLING THUNDER

0:18:310:18:33

With the deluge will come change to the animals and to the forest.

0:18:390:18:44

It's certainly perfect weather for frogs.

0:18:490:18:52

The big storm is the cue for the most important climb

0:18:550:18:59

of this frog's life.

0:18:590:19:00

It's a male in search of a mate.

0:19:020:19:04

But if he is to find one, he has to get to the top.

0:19:080:19:12

He needs to keep his wits about him,

0:19:460:19:49

for the rain also brings out hunters.

0:19:490:19:51

Easy does it.

0:20:070:20:08

The top, at last.

0:20:170:20:18

But he's late to the party.

0:20:200:20:22

FROGS CHIRP

0:20:260:20:28

The higher a male sits, the further his voice will carry,

0:20:330:20:38

so the top slots are worth fighting for.

0:20:380:20:40

And he's won.

0:21:180:21:20

He has the top place.

0:21:200:21:21

So now it's time to sing.

0:21:240:21:27

FROG CHIRPS

0:21:270:21:28

FROG CHIRPS

0:21:350:21:36

And a white-bellied female responds.

0:21:360:21:40

They join together to mate.

0:21:490:21:51

The loser will have to wait for the next storm before he sings again.

0:21:590:22:04

She lays her eggs on a blade of a long leaf.

0:22:090:22:13

And he, using his back legs, folds it over

0:22:130:22:16

and glues its two edges together, shutting the eggs inside.

0:22:160:22:20

This sealed nest is the safest place these leaf-folding frogs

0:22:310:22:36

can find to protect their precious brood.

0:22:360:22:39

Within days, the eggs are developing.

0:22:520:22:55

The timing is perfect.

0:22:560:22:58

The rain washes away the glue and the tadpoles slip

0:23:080:23:11

out of the leaves into the growing puddles below.

0:23:110:23:14

The rainy season reaches its peak and the ground has been transformed.

0:23:270:23:33

The forest is flooded.

0:23:460:23:49

It's a new world.

0:23:490:23:50

Fish swim in from the swollen streams,

0:23:560:23:59

exploiting this newly created space, snapping up the drowning insects.

0:23:590:24:04

This is a butterfly fish.

0:24:100:24:12

A Congo bichir.

0:24:180:24:20

The hunter becomes the hunted.

0:24:250:24:28

The butterfly fish is too quick and leaps out of danger.

0:24:460:24:49

The floods gradually drain back into the established waterways

0:25:210:25:25

that run through the forest like blood vessels.

0:25:250:25:28

There is so much water flowing through the forest that even

0:25:320:25:35

little rivulets can carve out the soil around an ancient boulder.

0:25:350:25:40

This is the home of one forest creature that has lived

0:25:550:25:59

here in the Congo for 44 million years.

0:25:590:26:03

Picathartes.

0:26:060:26:08

These birds mate for life,

0:26:160:26:19

and the male reaffirms the bond by displaying to the female.

0:26:190:26:23

They're building a mud nest on the underside of the boulder's

0:26:260:26:29

overhang, where it'll be protected from the rain.

0:26:290:26:32

The female takes the lead.

0:26:350:26:37

The male doesn't seem quite so skilful.

0:27:090:27:11

Oh, dear.

0:27:150:27:16

Luckily, she can put things right.

0:27:180:27:20

Now she's collecting the soft furnishings.

0:27:270:27:29

He's brought some, too, but he still can't get it right.

0:27:310:27:35

In the end, the female seems satisfied with the finish -

0:27:430:27:47

and just in time.

0:27:470:27:48

THUNDER

0:27:540:27:56

It might look as if he has been banished into the rain,

0:28:050:28:09

but in fact, they're a great team.

0:28:090:28:11

They share the incubation,

0:28:130:28:16

12 hours on, 12 hours off, for the next three weeks.

0:28:160:28:20

In due course, there are mouths to feed,

0:28:260:28:29

and now the male must prove his worth.

0:28:290:28:32

Worms are a good start, and he's doing well.

0:28:470:28:50

But the chicks are insatiable.

0:28:520:28:54

Fortunately, other things are on the menu.

0:29:020:29:05

He might be a poor nest-builder.

0:29:200:29:24

But he is redeeming himself now.

0:29:240:29:27

Domestic bliss!

0:29:300:29:32

Rocky overhangs are the only place where Picathartes

0:29:350:29:39

will build their nest,

0:29:390:29:40

so they owe their home to the stream that revealed

0:29:400:29:44

the flank of the giant boulder.

0:29:440:29:46

This stream and countless others like it

0:29:520:29:55

merge to form the great rivers of Central Africa.

0:29:550:29:58

More than 450 billion litres of rainwater,

0:30:100:30:15

travelling down thousands of rivers, are heading west.

0:30:150:30:18

The waters pick up speed as the rivers spill over the edge

0:30:230:30:26

of the central plateau and create giant cascades of white water.

0:30:260:30:31

The Kongou forces its way through the wildest, most untouched

0:30:580:31:02

forest in the whole of Africa.

0:31:020:31:05

The Congo river system drains an area the size of India,

0:31:480:31:53

carrying the waters westwards towards the Atlantic.

0:31:530:31:56

But before it reaches the coast, the rivers broaden,

0:31:580:32:01

forcing back the forest.

0:32:010:32:03

And here for the first time, there is space.

0:32:080:32:11

Wide, flat and safe.

0:32:120:32:15

These stretches of sand attract visitors from the coast.

0:32:180:32:22

Skimmers searching for somewhere safe to settle.

0:32:230:32:27

The lower mandible of their beaks is greatly elongated.

0:32:390:32:44

They slice it through the surface of the water at ten metres a second.

0:32:440:32:49

If and when it hits a tiny fish, it'll snap shut.

0:32:530:32:56

But why come up river to these open sand flats?

0:33:040:33:07

This is the answer.

0:33:130:33:15

BABY BIRD CHIRPS

0:33:150:33:16

But this nursery will not exist for long.

0:33:250:33:29

Four weeks from now, it'll be under ten metres of water.

0:33:290:33:33

If by then these chicks can't fly, they will drown.

0:33:350:33:38

The problem for young skimmers is that when they hatch,

0:33:430:33:47

the lower part of their beaks is the same size as the upper.

0:33:470:33:50

While they wait for it to grow,

0:33:530:33:55

they do their best to learn the skimming technique.

0:33:550:33:58

THUNDER

0:34:500:34:51

Open spaces may be safe,

0:35:050:35:08

but they give no protection against the driving rain.

0:35:080:35:11

These storms are a warning that the skimmers must soon leave.

0:35:270:35:31

The river is already rising.

0:35:330:35:36

This year the chicks get away in time.

0:35:500:35:52

It's not just water that has the power to clear a way

0:36:140:36:17

through the forest.

0:36:170:36:18

There are animals that could do that too.

0:36:200:36:23

They have created a network of pathways that criss-cross

0:36:270:36:30

the lowland forest and run for thousands of miles

0:36:300:36:33

in all directions.

0:36:330:36:34

CACOPHONY OF ANIMAL SOUNDS

0:36:370:36:39

These path-makers are surprisingly stealthy.

0:36:590:37:01

But as night falls, there's a chance of catching a glimpse of them.

0:37:030:37:09

ROAR

0:37:090:37:10

ELEPHANT TRUMPETS

0:37:200:37:21

ELEPHANT ROARS

0:37:220:37:23

Forest elephants are very social creatures,

0:37:270:37:30

but in dense jungle it's hard for them to find one another.

0:37:300:37:34

These elephants are lucky.

0:37:410:37:43

Here in the Congo, there is one special place

0:37:460:37:49

where they can meet and mingle.

0:37:490:37:51

A place that the elephants have created for themselves.

0:37:540:37:58

And this is it.

0:38:010:38:03

ROARING

0:38:110:38:12

Dzanga-Bai, the legendary "village of elephants".

0:38:180:38:23

BABY ELEPHANT TRUMPETS

0:38:250:38:27

ELEPHANTS ROAR AND TRUMPET

0:38:300:38:32

As well as being a place where they can enjoy one another's company,

0:38:390:38:44

this great clearing satisfies another craving...

0:38:440:38:49

for salts.

0:38:490:38:51

ELEPHANTS TRUMPET

0:38:570:38:59

The salts lie deep under the mud,

0:39:000:39:03

so the elephants have got to mine for them,

0:39:030:39:06

which they do with high pressure water jets from their trunks.

0:39:060:39:10

The precious salts

0:39:290:39:31

and the chance to socialise bring in elephants from far and wide.

0:39:310:39:36

If an elephant is in the mood to mate, this is the place to be.

0:39:400:39:46

ELEPHANT TRUMPETS

0:39:460:39:47

This young bull is in a state of musth, a kind of sexual fury.

0:39:470:39:52

ELEPHANT TRUMPETS

0:39:520:39:53

He is so pumped up by hormones and the excitements of the crowd

0:40:110:40:14

that he seems to have taken leave of his senses.

0:40:140:40:17

ELEPHANT TRUMPETS

0:40:380:40:40

But will throwing his weight about impress the females?

0:40:410:40:44

ELEPHANT TRUMPETS

0:40:440:40:46

The cows only become fertile once every two years.

0:40:470:40:51

So opportunities to encounter one at the right time are not common.

0:40:510:40:55

This could well be the first chance this young male has had.

0:40:550:41:00

He's lucky.

0:41:030:41:04

And there are no older bulls around to put him in his place.

0:41:040:41:08

Just for a moment, he is king of the bai.

0:41:190:41:23

ELEPHANT TRUMPETS

0:41:330:41:34

But his rule doesn't last for long.

0:41:530:41:56

Enter another lusty bull.

0:41:570:41:59

And a much bigger one.

0:42:020:42:04

But the young bull is still charged up with testosterone.

0:42:130:42:17

Bold or foolish, he's going into battle.

0:42:180:42:21

He never really had a chance.

0:43:180:43:20

Dzanga-bai is a huge clearing,

0:43:360:43:39

but it's still just a speck in this vast expanse of green.

0:43:390:43:44

Elephants might fell trees and carve pathways,

0:43:460:43:50

but nothing natural can hold back this forest for ever.

0:43:500:43:54

Nothing but the Atlantic Ocean.

0:43:570:44:00

Loango Beach, on Africa's west coast -

0:44:180:44:22

one of the last truly wild places

0:44:220:44:25

where the Congo jungle meets the sea.

0:44:250:44:28

Here, the forest gives way to sand, surf and fresh sea air.

0:44:390:44:46

The cool breezes and warm sunlight

0:44:460:44:53

entice creatures out of the dark forest.

0:44:530:44:56

LOWING

0:44:560:44:58

Forest buffalo appear first.

0:44:580:45:00

And here in the surf...

0:45:190:45:22

there are hippo.

0:45:220:45:23

Spray blows in from the sea, making the grass salty.

0:45:320:45:37

So here elephants can get their tasty salt

0:45:510:45:55

without having to dig for it.

0:45:550:45:57

This mother with her tiny baby can feel the sun on her back.

0:46:000:46:04

Here, it's safe for her little one.

0:46:040:46:07

They're free to eat in peace.

0:46:080:46:11

The bulls have all the room they need.

0:46:130:46:16

So there is less risk of a fight.

0:46:160:46:18

Everyone, from gorillas to forest hogs,

0:46:320:46:36

ventures out to relax on the beach.

0:46:360:46:39

BOAR GRUNT

0:46:390:46:41

But the forest creatures can't stay out here forever.

0:47:150:47:18

Despite everything -

0:47:230:47:25

the intense competition, the threats, the darkness -

0:47:250:47:29

they need their forest, just as their forest needs them.

0:47:290:47:35

ELEPHANT TRUMPETS

0:47:370:47:38

The Congo rainforest.

0:48:030:48:05

A four-day journey to the heart of Africa.

0:48:050:48:08

Once the plane leaves, you're on your own.

0:48:110:48:14

This expedition planned to film two of the Congo's best-kept secrets.

0:48:160:48:20

But to even find them,

0:48:200:48:22

the crew would have to work very hard indeed.

0:48:220:48:26

You might as well be on a different planet

0:48:260:48:28

coming to a place like this, Planet Congo.

0:48:280:48:30

Mysterious...

0:48:340:48:36

..difficult...

0:48:370:48:39

complex...

0:48:390:48:41

challenging.

0:48:410:48:43

'You know, everything's trying to bite you.'

0:48:450:48:48

Suck your blood.

0:48:490:48:50

It's like being tickled by a million feathers at the same time.

0:48:530:48:57

HE LAUGHS

0:48:570:48:59

HE SIGHS

0:48:590:49:00

The insects might be torture, but that's the least of their worries.

0:49:060:49:10

The only way to get deep into the jungle is to follow these trails.

0:49:130:49:17

Trails made by dangerous forest elephants.

0:49:180:49:22

'Well, the first thing you need to know about the forest elephant is,

0:49:230:49:27

'you don't want to meet one.'

0:49:270:49:29

Cos running away can elicit a charge,

0:49:290:49:32

'and it could be exactly the wrong thing to do.'

0:49:320:49:35

Our team are completely dependent on their Bayaka guides for safety.

0:49:360:49:40

WHISPERS:

0:49:440:49:46

But it's these same forest elephants that James has come to film.

0:49:500:49:54

And just to make the challenge harder,

0:49:540:49:56

he's here to film them in the dark.

0:49:560:49:59

Nobody knows exactly what they get up to at night -

0:50:010:50:04

they haven't been filmed like this before.

0:50:040:50:07

I couldn't rig this place if the Bayaka weren't here.

0:50:100:50:13

Watching my back, really.

0:50:130:50:16

James needs to operate the remote cameras

0:50:160:50:19

from somewhere out of the elephants' reach.

0:50:190:50:21

A tree platform seems like the best option.

0:50:270:50:30

Apparently, they have very big elephants round here.

0:50:350:50:38

They want us to put it a bit higher, so...

0:50:380:50:41

I think I'll do what they say.

0:50:410:50:42

But no-one wants to stay out at night

0:50:440:50:46

and help James with the filming.

0:50:460:50:48

So James will be alone until morning.

0:50:580:51:01

If anything goes wrong, he's on his own.

0:51:010:51:04

If they really wanted to, they could push these trees over.

0:51:040:51:06

I can't imagine that's going to be an issue.

0:51:060:51:09

As James settled down for the night,

0:51:110:51:13

he's got no idea of the trouble that's coming his way.

0:51:130:51:17

What's going on?

0:51:260:51:27

20 miles away, Mark MacEwen is also up in the middle of the night.

0:51:270:51:32

The animal he's after is proving impossible to find.

0:51:320:51:36

Ah...

0:51:360:51:37

So we get up in the darkness and we walk through the jungle at night,

0:51:380:51:43

hoping to hear the sound of cracking branches

0:51:430:51:46

or leaves moving up in the trees.

0:51:460:51:49

That means chimpanzees are stirring in the treetops,

0:51:490:51:52

and Mark is here to film chimps hunting for honey.

0:51:520:51:55

There's one chimp in particular he needs to find -

0:51:570:52:00

a teenager with a very sweet tooth,

0:52:000:52:03

known to go further in the pursuit of a bees' nest than any other.

0:52:030:52:06

I've spent six days walking,

0:52:110:52:15

probably the equivalent of a half marathon every day in 100% humidity,

0:52:150:52:21

and about 95 degrees in the shade.

0:52:210:52:24

And we just can't find our chimpanzee.

0:52:240:52:27

Time is ticking away, and Mark is running out of filming days.

0:52:300:52:34

At the moment, I just need some good luck.

0:52:400:52:43

We've come an awfully long way to get this sequence.

0:52:430:52:45

We've got probably 10, 12 days left.

0:52:450:52:48

But it's hard work at the moment.

0:52:500:52:51

All Mark can do is persevere, and hope for a break.

0:52:510:52:56

But not all the forest creatures are so shy.

0:53:020:53:04

Perched high in his tree, James Aldred is waiting patiently

0:53:060:53:09

for the elephants to come in.

0:53:090:53:11

GROWLING

0:53:130:53:15

At last, the elephants are here,

0:53:160:53:19

but they're behaving strangely.

0:53:190:53:21

(He knows something's not quite right.)

0:53:290:53:32

The elephants seem agitated.

0:53:320:53:36

They just want to get rid of you.

0:53:430:53:45

One begins to thump the tree with its head.

0:53:470:53:49

CRASHING

0:53:490:53:52

James has no option but to weather the attack.

0:53:520:53:54

CRASHING

0:53:570:53:59

"Let's lean forward and keep head-butting,

0:53:590:54:01

"keep head-butting, keep head-butting."

0:54:010:54:03

Suddenly, the cameras cut out.

0:54:060:54:08

And James is left in complete darkness.

0:54:100:54:13

After three weeks searching, Mark has lost nearly two stone in weight,

0:54:160:54:21

but he hasn't given up.

0:54:210:54:24

He can't afford to put down his camera for a second.

0:54:240:54:27

Suddenly, the guide spots the honey hunter.

0:54:290:54:32

This is it.

0:54:320:54:34

(Where is she?)

0:54:510:54:52

(She's inside the tree.)

0:54:520:54:54

Just for some honey, she's risking her life.

0:54:590:55:02

It's amazing.

0:55:020:55:03

'Well, I think I just couldn't stop smiling'

0:55:230:55:25

for several days after filming. The relief was just unbelievable.

0:55:250:55:29

Back at the camera platform, James has had a long night.

0:55:380:55:42

For over four hours, the elephant tried to shake him out of the tree.

0:55:440:55:48

Got down this morning when the Bayaka came to collect me,

0:55:530:55:56

went to look at the camera, and he'd pulled it out of the tree,

0:55:560:55:59

and he'd chewed through the power cable.

0:55:590:56:01

He must have gotten a bit of a shock, I mean only 12 volts, but...

0:56:020:56:06

Serves him right, quite honestly. HE LAUGHS

0:56:060:56:09

But at least we got a shot of him before he trashed the camera.

0:56:090:56:13

HE LAUGHS

0:56:130:56:14

Silver lining.

0:56:140:56:15

Despite this bumpy start, the elephants soon got used to James,

0:56:170:56:21

and James got used to the elephants.

0:56:210:56:24

Filming here was never going to be easy,

0:56:240:56:28

but we were soon able to reveal the night life of forest elephants

0:56:280:56:32

like never before.

0:56:320:56:34

GROWLING

0:56:350:56:37

Next time, Africa's Great Cape.

0:56:510:56:55

Where a land of mountains and deserts is flanked by two coasts.

0:56:580:57:03

Only in this part of Africa do powerful oceanic forces combine

0:57:070:57:13

in such a riotous explosion of life.

0:57:130:57:15

Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd

0:57:370:57:40

The very heart of Africa is covered in dense tropical rainforest. The animals that live here find the most ingenious ways to carve out their space in a claustrophobic landscape. Danger lurks in every shadow, but some animals thrive here, from honey-stealing chimps to birds with a lineage as old as the dinosaurs, thundering elephants and kick-boxing frogs. Here in the Congo, no matter how tough the competition, you must stand up and fight for yourself and your patch.


Download Subtitles

SRT

ASS