Hi, guys. I just watched the David Attenborough documentary: Life In The Undergrowth:
Invasion Of The Land.

And I was wondering: What sort of equipment would I need, in order to get that kind of footage? Is it possible with typical modern retail-consumer class A/V hardware; or only at great expense - with professional, specialized gear?

I've included a short clip to illustrate the actual size of some typical subjects; followed by a copy of the entire documentary for your viewing pleasure (if anybody's interested).

Unfortunately, they're both in SD/Lo-Res; but should (hopefully) give you a decent idea of what I'm talking about.

Here's a short clip on YouTube:
(min 144p→360p max)

Here's the full video on Dailymotion:
(min 380p→480p max)


  • 1
    This is a site frequented by video professionals, you're not going to win any friends by posting pirated content. I fixed it for you. – stib Jan 21 '17 at 22:42

Up until the high-frame rate (HFR) section of the video I would have said that all you need is a Canon MP-E 65mm Macro Lens, a nice LED light (so as not to fry the poor bugs with all the IR radiation that comes from tungsten halogen sources), and a camera with a reasonable video codec that accepts Canon lenses. However, the HFR section is clearly in the specialized territory of a Phantom camera, which is very expensive.

  • Keep in mind that many recent cell phones can record 240 fps footage. Macro photography with a cell phone is tricky, but it can be done. – user1118321 Jan 22 '17 at 3:37
  • 240 fps is likely not fast enough to capture those high-speed sequences. I expect they were shot at 1000fps or above. – Michael Tiemann Jan 22 '17 at 16:22
  • Ah, good point! – user1118321 Jan 22 '17 at 16:28

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