A man who spent 8 months on a small island filmed the story of king penguins in “A Year on Planet Earth”

One nature enthusiast has gone to great lengths to portray one of Mother Nature’s most treasured species, the king penguin, and the communities around the world that protect them in the Fox Nation series A Year on Planet Earth.

Wildlife cameraman Tom Hartwell joined Fox & Friends Weekend to discuss what it was like to spend eight months on a small, remote, subarctic island to film the lives of penguins from birth.

“I was very fortunate to be sent to this small island, Marion Island, with a small team … and spent eight months observing the lives of king penguins,” Hartwell told host Pete Hegseth. “So we follow the king penguin from egg to adult, and it’s really an incredible story told on an incredibly remote and epic island.”


“It was really, really cool to be a part of,” he continued.

Hartwell spent several months on the South African island during the outbreak of the global pandemic to film the series.

Tom Hartwell was the cameraman who spent 8 months on Marion Island

It was filmed in more than 60 different locations, featuring many species of animals and how they cope with the four seasons in different parts of the world over the course of a year.

The story of the penguins can be found from the beginning to the end in the 1st part of the series called “Winter”. The first episode also shows how the animals cope with extreme climates during the winter months in places like Dalen in Norway and Svalbard in the Arctic Circle.


“We’ve definitely seen some crazy stuff,” Hartwell said. “I think with wildlife we ​​all find our home, we find friends in nature, and that’s why we do this work … There was never a dull moment.

“Of course there are times when, you know, it was during a global pandemic, so we were eight months apart, all our family and friends were at home fighting COVID and trying to stay safe,” he said. “So obviously that added to things. But no, it was just amazing. Just the most incredible place.”

A Year on Planet Earth is now available to stream on Fox Nation

Hegseth asked Hartwell if he would name every penguin on the island, and he replied, noting that it would take a long time to do so given how many animals use the island as a breeding ground.

“We’d be there a long time,” Hartwell said. “More than a million penguins go to this island to breed, so I would name them there for a long time.”

“A Year on Planet Earth” is now available Available to stream on Fox Nation.

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