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On the banks of the river Nile
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On the banks of the river Nile / by Michael Gregor

Doc Station ; ZDF, 2016

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Abstract: No other river has inspired so many legends. No other river, apart from the Nile, dominates the country it flows through to such a great extent. Those who draw away from its banks arrive at the endlessness of desert. A bird’s eye view shows just how dependent people are on the world’s longest river. A solitary green belt runs from Sudan to the north through Egypt, which is sustained alone by the waters of this mighty stream. With opulent images, the 3-part documentary On the Banks of the river Nile tells of magnificent landscapes and fascinating people. We visit the cradle of a great civilization – one whose structures continue to amaze us to this day. The Nile Valley, located between the Aswan Dam and the Mediterranean coast, has changed a lot over the past years. A sharp downturn in tourism and the houghtless treatment of nature is threatening the basis of people’s livelihoods here. And a social awakening as well as religious conflicts have also left their mark. This film series sets out in search of extraordinary people and their by now often rare skills. It features touching stories about how the riverside dwellers manage their lives between tradition and revival using imagination and creativity. A multilayered portrait about contemporary Egypt emerges – with surprising viewpoints on hidden and familiar well-trodden places alike.

Whales
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Whales : lost in the ocean / Torsten Mehltretter

Mehltretter Media, 2016

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Abstract: To see a sperm whale swimming in the sea is a magical moment for most of the people. But it’s a tragedy if they are dying. When 30 young male sperm whales ended up dead on the coast of the North-Sea in 2016 a Group of German scientists started for searching the clues. What was the reason for the giants of the ocean to die at the beach? Is mankind responsible for the death of the whales? Can humans help the whales to find the right ways for their migration? Research in the Baltic Sea gave some answers. But helping the whales - is a race against the time.

Wandering wolfes. Part 1
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Wandering wolfes. Part 1 / Volker Schmidt-Sondermann

ZDF, 2016

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Abstract: Wolves have become a prime object for behavioural research throughout Europe. This is the story of three extraordinary migrators. What urges single specimens of the European wolf to undertake such highly dangerous journeys? For most Europeans, the wolf is more of a myth than an actual wild animal. But since the nineties, Isengrim has been making his way back to the middle of the continent, kilometre by painstaking kilometre. Part One of ‘Wandering Wolves’ follows the renowned Italian biologist Francesca Marucco and other experts on the trail of an Italian nomad wolf on his way from Parma in Northern Italy to the French Maritime Alps. There, he finally finds a partner. Shortly afterwards, however, his story is to meet a tragic twist of fate ...

Hannes Jaenicke
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Hannes Jaenicke : im Einsatz für Delfine / Judith Adlhoch, Eva-Maria Gfirtner

ZDF, 2016

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Abstract: Since 50 million years dolphins exist on planet earth. They are widely distributed aquatic mammals and the largest family members of wales. The renowned german actor, author and environmentalist Hannes Jaenicke is meeting with dedicated researchers, experts and conservationists to find out why these popular and fascinating creatures are exposed to danger. Dolphins are often regarded as one of earth's most intelligent animals, highly social with self-awareness and complex attitudes. But some species are acute close to extinction… Hannes Jaenickes first destination is the Red Sea, close to Hurghada. Swiss marine biologist Angela Ziltener is working here as the only researcher worldwide under water. Jaenicke assists her with her scientific findings while diving with wild dolphins. A total different way of research activity compared to those in aquariums. Is it at all possible to find out something about natural behavior of dolphins when they´re living in captivity? With these questions Jaenicke faces the head of zoo and dolphinarium Nürnberg, Dag Encke. Also Orcas are part of the dolphin family. The best studied Orca-Clan, the „Southern residents“, lives on the west coast of the USA at the frontier to Canada. Here Hannes Jaenicke meets up with orca expert Ken Balcomb, who studies the clan for over more than four decades. He´s quite satisfied with the latest turning point in the critical discussion concerning orca shows: The major player, US enterprise Sea World, committed a breeding stop of orcas in captivity. At Sea World San Diego and at Loro Parc in Tenerife Jaenicke gets an idea of the sad and little species-appropriate routine of show-orcas. With spectacular underwater footage and viewy drone shots “Hannes Jaenicke: In action for Dolphins” shows a highly topical, fascinating and stunning documentary about one of the most extraordinary species of our planet.

The silent death of the lions
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The silent death of the lions / Axel Gomille

ZDF, 2015

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Abstract: The king of the beasts is going through a difficult time. His kingdom is shrinking. There have never been so few lions as there are today. In recent decades their numbers have dropped by 90 percent and they’ve already gone extinct in fifteen countries. Has the king of the beasts come to the end of the road? Tanzania is one of the last strongholds of lions. Here scientists are going down new avenues to protect the last lions together with the Maasai. The German, Philipp Henschel from the organization Panthera, and the Swede, Ingela Jansson, who runs the Ngorongoro Lion Project are committed to saving the last remaining lions. They compare how lions cope inside and outside protected areas to find a solution: How can these big cats survive?

Wale und wilde Inseln
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Wale und wilde Inseln / Susanne Becker

ZDF, 2015

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Abstract: The Northern Pacific Coast of British Columbia is a beautiful wilderness. The schooner “Maple Leaf” cruises the amazing archipelago called the Great Bear Rainforest. Captain Kevin and his crew take about 8 guests on board who experience the riches of the coast and the magic aura of the humpbacks. But they also encounter the dangers of threatening oil tanker traffic.

Bears on the rise
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Bears on the rise / report by Axel Gomille

ZDF, 2014

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Abstract: Bears were wiped out in many parts of Europe, now they are slowly starting to spread again. The perception of brown bears still ranges from cuddly toy to monster – so not everybody is happy about a potential bear in their backyard. The film team witnesses, when Rumanian “garbage bears” are relocated back into the woods. They take a look at the Alps, where people protect their garbage against roaming bears – because the bears are already on the rise. But can we still live with them today?

Giants of fortune
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Giants of fortune : the whale sharks of Oslob / Ulf Marquardt

Marquardt Medienproduktion ; ZDF, 2014

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Abstract: In the little Filipino village of Oslob on the Cebu Island, people suffer from typhoons and overfishing. Until the world’s biggest fish and the Internet change everything. Fisherman Zosimo’s dearest wish is for his children to graduate from high school one day. Yet the chance that this wish will come true is tiny, since at times Zosimo doesn’t even manage to feed the family. Typhoons and overfishing make the lives of Oslob fishermen difficult.

Toxic tankers
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Toxic tankers / report by Anne Kauth

ZDF, 2014

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Abstract: Chittagong in Bangladesh is one of the world’s biggest places to break up ships. Hundreds of people are working here without any protective clothing. Many workers harm themselves or even die. The number of casualties can only be adumbrated. Labour laws and protection are almost unknown. Environmental specifications are irrelevant. All this makes Chittagong to one of the most contaminated and dangerous places in the world.

Mine detection rats
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Mine detection rats / report by Birgit Hermes

ZDF, 2014

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Abstract: Rats – many people don’t like them. But they can save lives. Because they are clever, teachable and carefull. Perfect qualities for the detection of claymores and landmines. Planet e. came along with this extraordinary mine detection experts working in Tanzania and Mozambique.

Guardians of the potato
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Guardians of the potato / Anja-Brenda Kindler

ZDF/ARTE, 2014

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Abstract: In the Peruvian Andes not far from the city of Cuzco at an altitude of around 4500 metres there lies the true treasure of the Incas: the potato. Even 8,000 years ago, the aboriginal tribes in the mountain regions grew potatoes. Today this legacy is maintained by the indigenous Quechua people. The farmers cultivate an estimated 3000 different varieties in their fields on the steep mountain slopes. While each family manage their own holdings, the Quechua have formed a co-operative in order to survive in this uninviting environment. The common aim is to preserve their most precious asset, the potato, for posterity. They are concerned not only to ensure the survival of old varieties, but also to develop new, resistant potatoes. For climate change is also making itself felt in the Andes, and the warmer weather is increasingly leading to crop failure. Many of the Andean potato varieties are threatened with extinction. Genaro Puma Pacco is a potato grower and also a Papa Arariva – a Guardian of the Tuber. He passes on his specialized knowledge to other farmers, helping them to cultivate their fields in optimum fashion. From planting to harvesting. Like everyone in the region, Genaro is a subsistence farmer, and uses the simplest of appliances – it’s hard and strenuous work in the tradition of his ancestors. At harvest time everyone mucks in. Families and neighbours help each other out in order to safeguard supplies in time for winter. The potato, though, is not just a source of nutrition, but also a medicinal plant. And it has a firm place in the cultural and religious life of the people. Without the blessing of a shaman, the farmers will not touch their potatoes. Only when ‘Pachamama’, or Mother Earth, is thanked in a ritual ceremony may they start the harvest. She is given offerings of maize spirit, coca leaves, seeds, and little beads. The climax of the harvest season is the great potato festival at the end of May. People start looking forward to it weeks in advance. In honour of the tuber, the farmers of the six Quechua villages gather on national Potato Day for a unique ceremony. In the remote mountain regions of Peru, the course of people’s everyday lives is determined by the potato. We all profit from the struggle of the Andean farmers to preserve their heritage. For the potato is one of the world’s most important staple foods.

Storks
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Storks : a village rooftop saga / [Herbert Ostwald]

ZDF ; Marco-Polo, 2014

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Abstract: Widely known as heralds of good luck and happiness, storks are very popular animals. This is especially true for Rühstädt, a tiny picturesque village with barely 200 residents. Every year the rooftops here are home for up to 40 pairs of White Stork – the largest colony in Germany.

Abenteuer Lerchenberg
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Abenteuer Lerchenberg / Andreas Ewels

ZDF, c2014

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Abstract: The Lerchenberg Adventure is not just a film - it's a project. From 2011 to 2014 over 40 people started to film the nature around them at the home of one of the largest tv-broadcasters in Europe the ZDF in Mainz. Among them filmmakers and people who never had something to do with nature or filmmaking. They all worked together for almost three years without any budget to explore the nature around them. A nature you'll find all over Europe but that people often ignore or simply don't have the eyes to see the paradies around us. This documentary shows the fantastic nature that you find all around us, even in places where you don't expect them. The Lerchenberg adventure is taking the audience to a different level and after seeing this film they'll see the word around them with a differnt view. Funny, poetic, informative and exciting.

Kielings wilde Welt. Teil 3
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Kielings wilde Welt. Teil 3

ZDF, 2014

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Abstract: The Bale Mountains are probably Ethiopia’s best kept natural secret. This Afro-alpine landscape is home of endemic species such as the Ethiopian wolf. Renowned wildlife film maker Andreas Kieling sets out on the trail of this endangered creature. But he also finds rare animals in Germany, where a small herd of wisents is to be released into the wild in the Rothaar Mountains. And in the Alps, he wants to learn more about the bearded vulture that has been brought back from the brink of extinction.

Im Zauber der Wildnis
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Im Zauber der Wildnis : Yellowstone / [Robert Wortmann]

ZDF, 2014

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Abstract: Ein Jahr lang reiste ein ZDF-Team immer wieder hinter die Kulissen des wohl legendärsten Nationalparks der Welt. Wir begleiten Ranger, Forscher und Abenteurer bei ihrem unglaublichen Alltag, der Besuchern sonst verborgen bleibt - am Puls dessen, was "ihren Park" antreibt, im Takt mit den großen, weltweiten Bewegungen für Nachhaltigkeit. Es ist eine Reise in eine der schönsten und wildesten Gegenden der Erde zwischen Tiefschnee, Indianersommer und Winterlicht. Una troupe delle ZDF accompagna per un anno delle persone che lavorano nel Parco Nazionale di Yellostone: ranger, ricercatori ed escursionisti, scoprendo aspetti che di solito i normali visitatori non vedono.

Abenteuer Mallorca
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Abenteuer Mallorca : mit dem ZDF-Zeppelin auf Entdeckungsreise / ein Film von Andreas Ewels

ZDF, c2013

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Abstract: Italians, British and Germans - millions of tourist come every year to enjoy the Spanish Island of Majorca. Most of them hang around at the beaches and enjoy the nightlife. But there is another part of the Island with beautiful nature, interesting animals, National Parks, Nature Reserves and other types of protected Areas. More and more tourists like to discover this part as well. The Majorca Adventure (Director´s Cut) shows how fragile this pure nature is and who the eco-crendentials owns. Meet people who fight for nature and keep the balance between tourism and nature protection. You´ll also see genets, reptiles and birds that you only find on this Island. Because of nature protection the filmcrew invented a complete new system to show Majorca from a different point of view. Most of the filming is done with the help of the unique unmanned aireship named the ZDF-Zeppelin - evironmentally friendly way of filming the nature. You have never seen the beautiful Island of Majorca like this before.

The tigerexperiment
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The tigerexperiment / film by Axel Gomille

ZDF ; Grey films India, 2013

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Abstract: The “Tiger Experiment” shows for the first time a unique conservation strategy: Raising wild orphan tigers and bringing them back to the wild. The technique is controversial, since nobody knew if the tigers would turn against people or if they would get around in the jungle. But the success of the Tiger Experiment could open up completely new avenues for conservation. The documentary should start a discussion among scientists and conservationist to see if and how it could be implemented in their work.

Italy my love
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Italy my love : the coast of Campania / by E. Casentini

ZDF/ARTE, 2013

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Abstract: In five coastal areas of Italy, we encounter people that have a very special relationship with their region. All of them love their country, their traditions and their work. We met with enthusiasts and hedonists that permitted us to take a glimpse into their everyday lives. Young Italians, who have rediscovered nature and its treasures. Others, that preserve the beauty, archaeologists that apply whole new methods, farmers that only cultivate that which the soil needs. Fishermen, who fish in the same way as it was done a century ago and tough, young men who play and dance the Tarantella. Dolphins, giant sea turtles and pink flamingos, which are researched, nursed back to health or simply observed. Cave explorers, sail makers and coffee specialists are also part of the big picture. Flying drone cameras provide bird’s-eye views and are an important element of the film. The results are spectacular images from completely different angles which provide us with landscape overviews and detailed insights, the likes of which have never been seen before.

The realm of the snow leopard
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The realm of the snow leopard / report by Axel Gomille

ZDF, 2013

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Abstract: There used to be many snow leopards in the high mountains of Kyrgyzstan. But that changed during the Soviet era. In those days, state hunters caught the animals legally. With the collapse of the Soviet Union, the state hunters lost their jobs. Some of them continued as poachers and are thus reducing the numbers of big cats even further. The Nature And Biodiversity Conservation Union NABU wants to do something about it. German and Kyrgyz conservationists are working together to protect the unique wilderness of Kyrgyzstan. They are running the anti-poaching unit Gruppa Bars. On several occasions, poachers have been arrested and animals like lynx or golden eagles were confiscated. After treatment in their wildlife rehabilitation centre they are returned to the wild – in the realm of the snow leopard.

Der rote Thun
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Der rote Thun / Christopher Gerish

ZDF/ARTE, 2012

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Abstract: The Bluefin tuna is one of the world’s most intelligent predatory fish. Yet this underwater hunter is itself among the hunted. It is a victim of the billion-dollar tuna fishing industry and is a perfect symbol of the ruthless overexploitation of our seas. Scientists point to evidence that shows stocks of Bluefin tuna have decreased by 80 per cent over the past few decades. Yet each year in May, off the coast of Sardinia, fishing boats launch into the sea to catch this highly prized creatures for Tokyo’s fish markets. 80 per cent of Mediterranean tuna are served up in sushi dishes in Japan. The Greenpeace activist Wakao Hanaoka has made his goal to change this. At the wholesale market, he explains to the traders the fate of this majestic creatures and the threat they are under. Yet most Japanese don’t want to hear the truth behind this delicacy. A German has built up a huge fishing empire in Australia’s Port Lincoln over the past 40 years and is attempting the impossible: breeding tuna. Together with fishing experts and scientists from the University of Adelaide, he is on the edge of a breakthrough. In Spain, researchers are carrying out pioneering work in the field of tuna breeding. Using genetic analysis of the spawn, they are attempting to understand the secrets of the fish reproductive process. Scientists and fishing experts from the WWF fit the tuna on the Italian coast with small transmitters. The knowledge they gain will allow new measures to be taken to protect the species and help the setting up of sustainable fishing operations, so that the Bluefin tuna may be saved from extinction.