Shallow seas cover only 8% of earth's surface, but contain the richest, most varied maritime life: from plankton and coral (literally vital for the very existence of reefs) to birds and ... See full summary »

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Episode credited cast:
Himself - Narrator (voice)
Narrator - US Version (voice)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Simon King ...


Shallow seas cover only 8% of earth's surface, but contain the richest, most varied maritime life: from plankton and coral (literally vital for the very existence of reefs) to birds and from various invertebrates to mammals like seals, dolphins and whales and from sea snakes to countless fish species. Their ecological interaction is greatly varied and complex, often with nearby land to, even with deserts. Written by KGF Vissers

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Release Date:

8 April 2007 (USA)  »

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[first lines]
David Attenborough - Narrator: Our planet's continents are fringed by shallow seas. Rarely more than 200 meters deep, they lie on the continental shelves, which may stretch sometimes for hundreds of miles before the sea floor drops into deeper, darker waters. Altogether, they constitute a mere 8% of the world's oceans, but they contain the vast majority of its marine life.
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Planet Earth Theme
Written by George Fenton
Performed by BBC Concert Orchestra
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User Reviews

Where Most Of The Colorful Marine Life Lives
4 January 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Few things, if any, are prettier on this planet than the wildly-colorful fish and plant life in the shallow seas, specifically the coral reefs. There have been numerous award-winning documentaries on this subject and most us just marvel as the color beneath the surface of the seas.

Although only making up 8 percent of the Earth's oceans, the shallow seas - those bodies of water nearest land - provide the vast majority of marine life. The coral reefs, in particular, make up for large amount of colorful life under water.

"Planet Earth" examines those areas and reefs, from The Great Barrier Reef, which can be seen from the moon, to the incredible reefs off the coast of Indonesia. "Fantastic" is just adjective you'll use to see the Indonesian seas, as well as the rest of this show.

We even see a "sea" that is in the middle of a desert! How does moisture get there? You have to watch. It's pretty cool.

It's also cool watching how Dolphins try to figure out how to eat some small fish right by the shore. It's tricky but Dolphins are pretty smart. We also learn - and see - while algae is so important. It may sound like a dull topic, but it isn't.

One of the most memorable - and not particularly fun-to-watch scene near the end are battles between seals and penguins, with seals taking bites out of the cut little guys and eating them. However, we also see the unbelievable Great White Shark, rise out of the seas and eat the seals! It's a dog-eat-dog world out there. Who eats the Great Whites, though?

5 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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