Walking with Dinosaurs pilot
Time of the Titans
New Blood - broadcast in North America as Dawn of the Dinosaurs - is the first episode of Walking with Dinosaurs thus being the first episode in the Walking With... series.
By a river, a female Coelophysis stalks a herd of dicynodonts called Placerias, looking for weak members to prey upon. Downstream, a male cynodont resides in a burrow with his family. A female Postosuchus, a rauisuchian and one of the largest carnivores alive in the Triassic, attacks the Placerias herd, and wounds one individual; the herd scatters, leaving the wounded Placerias to the Postosuchus. Early pterosaurs called Peteinosaurus are depicted feeding on dragonflies and cooling themselves in the little water remaining during the drought. Still searching for food, the female Coelophysis, alongside another member of her species, discovers the cynodont burrow; the male wards them off. Later that evening, after he goes off hunting, an inquisitive pup follows the male to the entrance and is caught by the female Coelophysis. At night, the cynodont pair eat their remaining young and then move away. On the next day, the Coelophysis work to expose the nest. The female Postosuchus is later shown to have been wounded by the Placerias, a prior attack on them leaving her with a tusk wound on her thigh. After being unable to successfully hunt another Placerias, she is expelled from her territory by a rival male. Wounded, sick, and without a territory, the female dies and is eaten by a pack of Coelophysis. As the dry season continues, food becomes scarce. The Placerias herd embarks on a journey in search of water, while the Coelophysis begin to cannibalise their young, and the male cynodont also resorts to hunting baby Coelophysis at night. Finally, the wet season arrives; the majority of the Coelophysis have survived (including the lead female), and the cynodont pair have a new clutch of eggs. The episode ends with the arrival of a migrating herd of Plateosaurus, foreshadowing the dominance of the sauropods after the Triassic–Jurassic extinction event.
In the credits it is explained that 20 million years later, the aforementioned extinction wiped out many reptile species, but the dinosaurs continued to evolve; carnivores grew to massive sizes while their prey became even larger, setting the stage for the next episode with the giants of the Jurassic.
220 Million Years Ago (Arizona, USA)
- Placerias (first appearance)
- Coelophysis (first appearance)
- Lungfish (live acted, first appearance)
- Cynodont (first appearance)
- Postosuchus (first appearance)
- Peteinosaurus (first appearance)
- Dragonfly (live acted, first appearance)
- Plateosaurus (first appearance)
- 65 Million Years Ago (Montana, USA)
- 152 Million Years Ago (Colorado, USA)
- 127 Million Years Ago (Brazil)
- Ornithocheirus (stock footage, first appearance)
- 149 Million Years Ago (Oxfordshire, England)
- In a rerelease, the cynodonts, Peteinosaurus, and Plateosaurus scenes are cut.
- In the US dub, the scene where the cynodonts eat their pups is cut, likely due to it being too dark.
- In the UK dub, it is never implied what happened to the Placerias. In the US dub, the narrator says that they were driven to extinction during the migration.
- Unlike the other episodes of Walking with Dinosaurs, this episode has three main creature focuses: the female Coelophysis, the Cynodont pair and the female Postosuchus. All the other episodes have one focus.
- This is the only episode of Walking with Dinosaurs to take place in the Triassic.
- There is no conclusive evidence that Coelophysis was cannibalistic. This was based on a fossil of Coelophysis with jumbled up bones in its stomach cavity, but these turned out to be species of small crocodylomorphs, rather than the juveniles they were long mistaken to be. However, this was discovered after the release of this episode, and it is not implausible, given that cannibalism is not rare in theropods.
- There is no evidence that Coelophysis was a cannibalistic dinosaur. The bones found in the Coelophysis' stomach were in fact those of a small crocodile. This discovery was made after the show aired, though.
- Plateosaurus could not walk on all fours as their forelimbs were not designed for quadrupedal use. This was also discovered after the show aired.
- Thrinaxodon lived during the early Triassic period, not the late Triassic period, so it would've lived with Lystrosaurus and Euparkeria instead of with Placerias and Coelophysis.
- Plateosaurus lived in Europe with Liliensternus as portrayed in Walking With Dinosaurs: The Arena Spectacular and not in the Americas with Coelophysis.
- 4 October 1999 20.30 BBC One
- 5 October 1999 18.30 BBC Choice
- 9 October 1999 19.55 BBC Choice
- 10 October 1999 16.45 BBC One
- 10 October 1999 19.30 BBC Choice
- 4 December 1999 7.00 BBC Knowledge
- 5 August 2000 20.05 BBC One
- 8 January 2003 19.00 BBC Four
- 17 February 2004 1.20 BBC One
- 14 October 2006 19.45 BBC Three