It doesn't have the glossiness, or hushed Attenborough tones, of 'Frozen Planet' and 'Life' but 'Viking Wilderness' on Animal Planet filmed something that the two BBC big hitters failed to capture. It is, what I consider to be one of the most shocking behaviours in the arctic, something that I tried desperately to film in 2009. Barnacle geese chicks and their 'leap of faith'.
In a bid to get their chicks to the feeding grounds on time, the Barnacle geese parents encourage their flightless offspring to jump straight down sheer rock faces, sometimes as high as 150 feet. As the chicks abandon the safety of their rocky nests, gulls and foxes wait for the falling feast. Miraculously some of these tiny balls of fluff survive to reach the grassy bounty. Here they congregate to feed under the watchful eye of their parents. Once they are large enough they migrate to their winter feeding grounds in Scotland and the Netherlands.
As far as I'm aware, this 'leap' hasn't been filmed since 1985 so my hat is docked to the 'Viking Wilderness' team.
(Photo: Barnacle Geese on Svalbard, Paul Williams)