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A number of classic Sir David Attenborough documentaries are returning to BBC iPlayer from the archive. These include Lost Worlds, Vanished Lives, Attenborough’s series about fossils and palaeontology, which has not been shown on the BBC since 1989, as well as seminal 1990 series The Trials Of Life.

Much of the later Life series is also being added to BBC iPlayer: 1993’s Life In The Freezer; 1995’s The Private Life Of Plants; 1998’s The Life Of Birds; 2002’s The Life Of Mammals; and 2005’s Life In The Undergrowth, as well as personal reflections on his interactions with gorillas in 2007’s Gorillas Revisited With Sir David Attenborough.

Also being added to BBC iPlayer is 2002’s Life On Air: David Attenborough’s 50 Years In Television. In the retrospective, Michael Palin presents a look back over Sir David’s then five decades on our screens, and interviews Sir David about his experiences documenting the natural world.

The archive series are being added to BBC iPlayer on World Oceans Day, and relevant episodes from across the series will be added to the Secrets Of The Seas collection on BBC iPlayer - which also features The Blue Planet and Blue Planet II, Wonders of the Celtic Deep, The Green Planet, Earth’s Tropical Islands, Seven Worlds, One Planet, The Mating Game, Indian Ocean With Simon Reeve, and many more.

Plus many more series from across Sir David's broadcasting career are available in the Sir David Attenborough collection on BBC iPlayer now.

Being added from the archive today are:

Lost Worlds, Vanished Lives (1989)

Sir David indulges a boyhood passion for studying rocks and fossils with the help of expert palaeontologists, fossil hunters and animation techniques, to show how life evolved in Earth's distant past. He travels the globe to visit the world's most famous fossil sites.

The Trials Of Life (1990)

This seminal documentary series from 1990 was a companion series to 1979’s Life On Earth and 1984’s The Living Planet, taking a broad view of the natural world to tell the story of life itself. Each episode examines a different aspect of the journey through life - birth, death, society, finding food, surviving fights and continuing the line with the next generation.

Life In The Freezer (1993)

Sir David Attenborough looks at the natural history of Antarctica, exploring the seasonal effect on the continent, from one of the planet’s harshest winters to the arrival of spring, which welcomes a population of ocean travellers returning to breed. Summer sees seals and penguins struggle to raise their young before winter sets in again.

The Private Life Of Plants (1995)

Sir David explores the life cycle of plants, which used at-the-time pioneering time-lapse filming techniques to show life on a different time scale. Even though the life of plants is highly complex and often surprising, most of it is invisible to humans unless events that happen over months or even years are shown within seconds.

The Life Of Birds (1998)

A natural history of bird life narrated by Sir David Attenborough. The series follows the evolution and habits of bird species from around the world, showing birds in over 40 countries with a different aspect of life.

The Life Of Mammals (2002)

Sir David looks at why mammals are the most successful creatures on the planet, studying the lives of disparate groups, including marsupials, insectivores, rodents, arboreal mammals, and, of course, apes, and the evolution of human society.

Life On Air - David Attenborough’s 50 Years In Television (2002)

Michael Palin presents a profile of the television career of Sir David Attenborough, from controller of BBC Two to his wildlife programmes such as Life On Earth and The Blue Planet.

Life In The Undergrowth (2005)

Sir David Attenborough reveals the amazing stories behind the tiny lives of invertebrates, exploring their incredible miniature world with groundbreaking camerawork and technology. The series features the lives of European invertebrates like the wolf spider and housefly, and more exotic varieties such as the redback spider of Australia and venomous centipedes of the Amazon.

Gorilla’s Revisited With Sir David Attenborough (2007)

Sir David recounts his very personal experiences with the mountain gorillas of Rwanda. Ever since they were discovered over a century ago, these remarkable creatures have been threatened by loss of habitat, poaching, disease and political instability. But despite all odds their numbers have increased. Sir David tells the extraordinary tale of how conservationists like Dian Fossey have battled to save the mountain gorilla from the brink of extinction.

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