At a time when it's possible for thirty people to stand on the top of Everest in one day, Antarctica still remains a remote, lonely and desolate continent. A place where it's possible to see the splendours and immensities of the natural world at its most dramatic and, what's more, witness them almost exactly as they were, long, long before human beings ever arrived on the surface of this planet. Long may it remain so.
If we [humans] disappeared overnight, the world would probably be better off.David AttenboroughThe Daily Telegraph (London, 2005-11-12), making the point that the reverse is not true
Trade is a proper and decent relationship, with dignity and respect on both sides.David Attenborough44 min 10 sec, On civil behavior when encountering an uncontacted tribe
And yet, today the harbour is silted up, most of the city lies buried beneath sand dunes and the land has become a desert. As the population had grown and more people wanted more fields, so more of the forest that once stood around the city was cut down, until eventually it was all gone. With no roots to hold the soil, and no attempt to conserve it, it was carried away by the wind and the rain.David Attenborough49 min 40 sec
It used to be said, that in places like this, nature eventually failed to support man, the truth is exactly the reverse, here man failed to support nature. Ten thousand years ago man regarded the natural world as divine, but as he domesticated animals and plants so nature lost some of its mystery and appeared to be little more than a larder that could be raided with impunity.David AttenboroughThe First Eden (1987), Episode 2: "The Gods Enslaved" (52 min 20 sec).
Warm-bloodedness is one of the key factors that have enabled mammals to conquer the Earth, and to develop the most complex bodies in the animal kingdom. In this series, we will travel the world to discover just how varied and how astonishing mammals are.David AttenboroughEpisode I (The Life of Mammals (2002))
An eye from another world; a smell-detector, investigating the path ahead. We don't often see a snail that way, and that's because we've only recently had the tiny lenses and electronic cameras that we need to explore this miniature world. But when we meet its inhabitants face to face, we suddenly realise that their behaviour can be just as meaningful to us as the behaviour of many animals more our own size.David AttenboroughOpening narration
Were we and the rest of the back-boned animals to disappear overnight, the rest of the world would get on pretty well.David AttenboroughDavid Attenborough; quoted in "Wolf spiders reveal their love secrets". Telegraph.co.uk. 15 November 2005. Retrieved on 2006-11-25.
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