The Swarm

Episode 1: How dangerous are whales?

In the shoal, everything starts with whales suddenly attacking boats with tourists. A spectacular start – but also realistic?
At Vancouver Island, a special research assistant comes into play: dog Iba specializes in sniffing out whale feces. This is because whale feces provide researchers with detailed insights into the animals’ diets. The health of the oceans and even the climate are also significantly related to whale feces. For the climate, such a whale has a similarly positive effect as a thousand trees on land. At the same time, the majestic animals are constantly exposed to new stress factors. The film accompanies a team from the University of Valencia during the autopsy of a small whale, shows how whales in Seattle Bay are protected from noise and explains why a lack of trees on land can become life-threatening for animals in the deep sea.


WRITER & DIRECTOR: Thomas Lischak     CAMERA: Chris Grewe, José Rato     EDITOR: Jens Greuner     SOUND: Tembela Bohle, Daniel Peneirol     NARRATOR: Gergana Muskala     MUSIC: Dascha Dauenhauer     COMMISSIONING EDITORS: Peter Arens (ZDF), Achim Odziomek (ZDF)