The Green Land

Wildlife in the Land of Vikings

When Vikings arrived at the distant shore a thousand years ago, Erik the Red named the place “Greenland” in a marketing campaign aimed at getting more settlers to follow him to this new territory.

Erik the Red was successful and soon thousands of Norse settlers started to use the land for agriculture. At the same time, and far to the north, Inuit people arrived across from the Canadian high Arctic. They were well adapted for a life in the Arctic and were familiar with the resources living there.

This is the historical platform on which the story of the Green Land is based. In spite of what most people think, and in spite of the fact that the climate today is much colder than it was a thousand years ago, there is a green paradise in southern Greenland. Each spring the south of Greenland breaks out of the bonds of snow and ice and during a few very hectic summer months, when the sun shines around the clock, they thrive and rejuvenate.

There are still remains of the vast forests that once covered this land, and still the almost mythical musk ox can be found among the trees. The meadows are colourful and against a backdrop of white and blue glaciers, flowers open to the sun.

Not surprisingly, the cold Arctic Ocean forms the basis for the rich wildlife in the area. Whales, seals, fish and myriads of sea birds congregate along the shorelines. Predators wait for their prey – white tailed eagles, peregrine and gyr falcons perform swift attacks. The Arctic fox makes sure it will benefit from all the riches brought ashore by the sea birds occupying the steep cliff faces and rocky shores.

The film is a story about people and wildlife in southern Greenland. It’s the first comprehensive natural history film produced in the area.

The films is a co-production with WDR/Germany and Discovery HD Channel.