Nunatsiaq Online
NEWS: Around the Arctic April 02, 2014 - 11:14 am

CBC nature doc offers HD eye candy from Nunavut this week

"Some sequences were shot at 10,000 frames per second"

DAVID MURPHY
In WIld Canada's episode called
In WIld Canada's episode called "Ice Edge" you'll see shots of animals like this narwhal. The episode features polar bears, caribou, belugas, eiders ducks, murres, wolves and bowhead whales, amongst others, all shot in Nunavut. (PHOTO COURTESY OF WILD CANADA).
Another scene from
Another scene from "Ice Edge," which airs April 3.

A CBC nature documentary will shine a spotlight on Nunavut this week.

CBC’s Wild Canada — a four-part all-Canadian nature documentary— will air an episode called “Ice Edge” April 3 that features Nunavut plants and animals, landscapes and even a few Inuit hunters.

A documentary crew spent 143 days in Nunavut shooting the 45-minute episode, which is narrated by David Suzuki.

In the documentary, you’ll see time-lapses of “breathing ice” — that’s when sea ice is shown rising and falling over a day.

And the documentary shows how Inuit hunters take advantage of the tides to collect mussels.

At low tide, seawater under the ice retreats, creating pockets or hollow areas between the ice and the seabed, where hunters can scoop up mussels.

It’s a dark scene under the ice. Shadowy figures speaking Inuktitut collect mussels off the sea floor with plastic gloves.

Above them, massive chunks of ice give off a turquoise colour as sunlight tries to shine through the cracks.

“They are willing to risk the dangers of tonnes of ice just centimetres above their heads,” Suzuki says in his narration.

There are also close-ups of polar bears, caribou, belugas, eiders ducks, murres, wolves and bowhead whales.

The documentary crew, some of whom worked on a similar documentary called Planet Earth, shot the episode near communities such as Sanikiluaq, Resolute Bay, Pond Inlet, Rankin Inlet, Pangnirtung and Akpatok Island in Ungava Bay.

The crew’s high definition cameras are similar to those used in the movie, The Hobbit.

“Some sequences were shot at 10,000 frames per second to capture details never before seen in a nature documentary,” a Wild Canada press release said.

The episode ends with a discussion of global warming and a shot of three polar bears walking in the snow.

“From a distance, and unintentionally, humans have triggered the massive changes now under way here,” Suzuki says.

“The future is uncertain in an Arctic landscape that is undergoing some of the most intense and rapid fluctuations in the history of the planet.” 

The episode will air April 3 at 8 p.m. on CBC, usually reserved for David Suzuki’s show, The Nature of Things. 

Wild Canada’s other episodes include The Eternal Frontier, The Wild West and The Heartland.

To view those episodes online, click here.

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