arboreal

NATURE
A Sloth Named Velcro

 

Filmed in Panama, Costa Rica and Colombia, this is a story of friendship between a journalist and the sloth she named Velcro and a network of people working to learn more about sloths in order to protect them. Once largely ignored, sloths have become a hot topic of scientific researchers. New studies show that they’re not so “sloth-like” after all: despite their reputation, sloths in fact sleep only about as much as humans do and are much more active in the wild than they are in captivity. Other studies have shown sloths are not as solitary as we thought, that they have social structures and that males even keep small harems of females. New research into the gait of sloths has revealed another surprise. X-ray images and photographic analysis show that sloths actually move just like primates, only upside-down.

 

NATURE
The Last Orangutan Eden

 

Ecologist Chris Morgan travels to the jungles of Northern Sumatra to document the efforts to save its wild orangutan population, which is quickly dwindling due to deforestation. Morgan spends time with orphaned orangs at rehabilitation centers observing the process of teaching them the survival skills they’ll need to be released back into the wild. He also travels to a peat swamp forest known as Suaq Balimbing to work with a team of experienced researchers. Morgan is immersed in a unique social band of wild orangs that uses tools, shares food, forages together and creates their own distinct culture. Advanced cameras follow the orangs throughout the canopy to provide an intimate, clear picture of how these arboreal apes spend their days and nights and interact with one another.

 

NATURE
Mystery Monkeys of Shangri-La

 

This is the true story of a family of Yunnan snub-nosed monkeys living in the highest forests in the world. Only recently discovered, snub-nosed monkeys are hauntingly beautiful primates, gentler than others of their kind. Elfin-like, they can seem both childlike and wise beyond their years. The family is led by a formidable fighter and his fighting force who guard a troop of 8-10 families. The survival of this unique monkey society, formed in response to the hardships of the Himalayas, depends on strong defensive strategies and the cooperation and interdependence of them all.