Although Netflix’s new David Attenborough series Our Planet has been applauded by viewers around the globe, one particular scene has been labelled one of the most distressing ever seen in a nature documentary.
A segment in the second episode of the show follows walruses stranded on a cliff top, confused by a combination of shrinking ice cover and their own poor eyesight. Unaware of how high up they are, many of the two-tonne Arctic animals fall to their deaths.
“Their natural home is out on the sea ice, but the ice has retreated away to the north and this is the closest place to their feeding grounds,” Attenborough explains.
“Every square inch is occupied, climbing over the tightly packed bodies is the only way across the crowd – those beneath can get crushed to death.
“In a desperate bid to avoid the crush they try head towards the cliffs.”
He continues: “A walrus’ eyesight out of water is poor. But they can sense the others down below. As they get hungry, they need to return to the sea.
“In their desperation to do so, hundreds fall from heights they should never have scaled.”
After watching the devastating fall, many took to Twitter to share their grief over the scene.
Yet the harrowing episode also gave others “new perspective” on the impact of climate change, with many calling for humans to do more to combat the problem.
Of course, climate change is an issue close to Attenborough’s heart.
Sitting down recently with RadioTimes.com, he said: “If the oceans temperatures rise in the way that they’re threatening to do, that is a huge catastrophe for homo sapiens. The fact is that huge proportions of human beings depend upon the seas for food. And we know that we can’t afford to keep on making mistakes. We are going to be dependent on the seas, and at the moment we are poisoning them and boiling them.”
You can read the full interview here.
Our Planet is now available to watch on Netflix