The most spectacular moment in T.V. history

The hatching of the Marine Iguana is no easy undertaking.



The hearts of viewers were captured by the thrilling story of this marine iguana’s first moments on Earth.

By Clayton Keeling, Copy Editor

You slowly begin to feel yourself, and then your surroundings. You realize you’ve finally hatched, and that you’re feeling sand. You push your head out a little, and the first thing you see is your brother being devoured by a snake. Instinctually, you  know your is life in danger and that you are on the precipice of survival.

Welcome to the hatching of the marine iguana.

The first episode of Planet Earth II, the sequel of Planet Earth, aired on November 6. Narrated by Sir David Attenborough, it told the tale of various species on islands across the globe. It was overall an amazing experience, filled with epic tales of survival and life.

However, one segment stuck out, a moment that had everyone on the edge of their seat, crying, screaming, and yelling in excitement and horror.

This particular section showed marine iguanas on the Galapagos Islands. Their eggs are laid in the sand, so dozens of nearby racer snakes wait for an easy meal- but perhaps not for this particular hatchling.

The first thing the new hatchling sees is his bretheren, who could not escape the snakes, being killed and eaten.

The iguana runs and after a brief chase, he loses his first predator, but in the process alerts scores more along the rocky hill’s edge. But the hatchling has nerve, and knows that if he keeps still the racer snakes won’t know where he is, as their eyes detect movement, but are otherwise poor.

He waits. Seconds go by. And then one snake comes too close and the iguana leaps away, running for his life. Along the hill’s edge, snakes pour out from their hiding places, dark rivers carving through the sand chasing the single iguana.

The hatchling makes it fairly far, curving in to attempt to try and climb the rocky hill, but alas. He falls into an ambush and the snakes coil around him. Our aspirations fade and our cheers are silenced by the racer snakes victory.

But no! The marine iguana somehow wiggles his way out, and with the furious snakes literally nipping at his heels, he jumps and climbs free from his birthplace up the rocky hill, now in the safety of his fellow iguanas.

The scene was arguably one of the best on T.V. ever. Hans Zimmer’s music perfectly enthralled our souls, along with Attenborough’s narration. But the event itself, purely nature and chance, is what truly makes this so incredible.

Such thrilling stories somehow capture and inspire a huge range of our human emotions. It’s almost as if all stories we create and share are simply reflections of nature, and so when we see it there, it’s the real deal. Almost.