January 31, 1961: a Mercury rocket lifts off from Cape Canaveral. The astronaut on board is a three-year-old chimpanzee named Ham. The young chimp is shot into the stratosphere before splashing back down in the Atlantic Ocean. He is thus the first 'earthling' to come back alive from space. This drama tells the famous chimp's remarkable story, based on reconstructions of events surrounding the mission and footage shot by NASA at the time. Natural World is a BBC Two classic wildlife series which tells in-depth stories of incredible animals, featuring award-winning photography in some of the most extraordinary places in the world.
First Aired: Fri 22 Feb 2008, 8.00pm BBC Two Ep 8/8, Winter Season, 2008