Episode 1 – The First to Fly

1st January, price 7pm – Sky 3D & Sky 1

David Attenborough embarks on an extraordinary journey to unravel one of nature’s most gripping stories – the evolution of flying animals. He begins by exploring the unexpectedly advanced world of the very first flyers – the insects. Stunning new images give us fresh insights into an astonishing story – from the first dragonfly-like creatures that emerged from the water to fly on four wings, tadalafil to the beetles that built hard wing-cases to colonise the land, rx and butterflies capable of migrating halfway round the globe. He concludes by investigating the remarkable skills of jet fighter of the insect world – the humble but surprisingly acrobatic fly.

Episode 2 – Rivals

8th January, 8pm – Sky 3D & Sky 1

David Attenborough continues his search for the origins of flying animals, as he charts the rise of new, larger creatures – extinct reptiles that flew on wings of skin, dinosaurs that sprouted feathers to become the ancestors of birds, and gliding mammals that emerged from a life in the trees to dominate the night as bats. His journey spans the globe – from the rainforests of Borneo to see bizarre gliding animals, to China and its new discoveries of dinosaur fossils. Stunning CGI brings to life creatures that disappeared over 200 million years ago, and new filming techniques bring us closer than ever to the secrets of flight itself.

Episode 3 – Triumph

15th January, 8pm – Sky 3D & Sky 1

David Attenborough concludes his epic history of the evolution of flight with an exploration of the highly advanced fliers that dominate our skies today – the extraordinarily diverse skills of the birds, and the sonar-guided precision of the bats. He encounters some of our planet’s most remarkable fliers – from peregrine falcons dive-bombing starlings over Rome, to hummingbirds hovering in the cloud forests of Ecuador. In a spectacular finale, he visits Gomantong cave in Borneo to witness the mass exodus of a million bats.