Sir David Attenborough to Narrate New Docuseries About Animal Sex

"The Mating Game" will debut on Discovery+ later this month

Two chimpanzees in Ngogo National Park groom each other as a way of solidifying bonds and alliances.
Silverback Films courtesy Discovery+ / BBC Studios

Have you ever sat down to watch a prestige nature documentary — Planet Earth II, for example — and thought, “This doesn’t have nearly enough scenes of animals engaged in the throes of passion?” (Your own personal wording may vary, but you get the idea.)

If so, your world might be about to change in a big way.

Discovery+ and the BBC have collaborated on a new nature series narrated by wildlife-narration GOAT Sir David Attenborough, and its title should give you a good sense of what to expect. That title? The Mating Game — and, as the show’s trailer suggests, its focus is on how animals of various species court and mate.

As the trailer indicates, some of the ground covered here will be what you might expect — birds’ courtship dances and expansive plumage, for one thing; for another, the peculiar and terrifying mating habits of the praying mantis. But the show will also delve into some lesser-known mating behaviors, such as the flatworm, which engages in something known as — checks notes — “penis fencing.”

All told, the series will cover 80 different species and was shot across six continents. For some of the animals featured here, The Mating Game marks the first time these rituals have appeared on film — including a group of tree frogs breeding in a rain forest in French Guiana. The first two episodes are set to air on Discovery+ on November 21, 2021, with the rest to follow weekly.

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