When you see Netflix’s new nature documentary “Our Planet” you may be tempted to believe you’re going to be treated to a “Planet Earth” style nature documentary narrated by David Attenborough, and are instead preached at about how manmade climate change is hurting the planet and killing animals.
One grizzly scene in particular shows walruses throwing themselves off a cliff. We’re told that this is due to global warming, however as one scientist points out, this is a lie, and the walruses were being troubled by something far greater than “climate change.”
“Our Planet” explains that the lack of ice due to global warming melting causes walruses to clump together and fall to their deaths off a cliff.
A very affecting scene. However, the truth is that the culprit for the walruses leaping to their death was due to the fact that they were being hunted by polar bears according to Susan Crockford, a zoologist and adjunct professor at the University of Victoria.
According to her, the marked death in walruses via fall from a cliffside coincided with a report by The Siberian Times, which noted itself that the falling walruses were a result of polar bears spooking the creatures:
Despite many statements to the press, the film crew have steadfastly refused to reveal precisely where and when they filmed the walrus deaths shown in this film in relation to the walrus deaths initiated by polar bears reported by The Siberian Times in the fall of 2017.
I can only conclude, therefore, that the two incidents are indeed essentially one and the same: that the filmmakers, probably alerted by resident WWF employees at Ryrkaipiy, moved in after polar bears caused hundreds of walrus to fall to their deaths. The crew then captured on film the last few falls over the cliff as the walrus herd moved away from the haulout.
The lie being told by Attenborough and the film crew is that 200-300 walruses fell during the time they were filming, while in fact they filmed only a few: polar bears were responsible for the majority of the carcasses shown on the beach below the cliff. This is, of course, in addition to the bigger lie that lack of sea ice is to blame for walrus herds being onshore in the first place.
According to the Atlantic, Lori Quakenbush of the Alaska Department of Fish and Game as well as others knowledgeable about walrus behavior noted that this behavior has actually been witnessed before:
Quakenbush and others also doubt that the climbs and falls are related to climate change, because such tragedies have been reported since before sea ice showed substantial declines. “Walruses have shown similar behavior on the U.S. coastline when space and ice were not an issue, and the reason is unknown,” says Lori Polasek from the University of Alaska Fairbanks. For example, in three successive years, from 1994 to 1996, dozens of male walruses fell to their death from cliffs in southwestern Alaska.
The documentary claimed that walruses are so packed together due to the loss of ice and that walruses were desperate “to find space away from the crowds.” However, Quakenbush has corrected that assertion as well.
“Walruses thrive on crowds and haul out in tight groups, even when space is available,” she said.
It should be noted that “Our Planet” was funded by the environmental group World Wildlife Fund (WWF), and used the footage of packed together walruses as a horrible sign of climate change, making it seem as if this isn’t standard behavior for walruses at all.
— WWF UK (@wwf_uk) April 12, 2019
So, in effect, the walruses that were tightly packed together were spooked by polar bears that the “Our Planet” documentary team failed to mention as part of the coverage of the event. The spooked walruses were either pushed or fell to their deaths.
Environmentalists then not only use this selective footage as a supporting argument for climate change, but completely misrepresent the nature of walruses to make it seem like this wouldn’t have happened if there was more ice around for walruses to space out on, which is actually not in their nature.
From gender nonsense on “Bill Nye Saves the World” to walruses on “Our Planet,” these science and nature shows are really ditching science and nature.