passion for nature
Nature's Calendar is very close to my heart.
have a profound interest in getting people off their sofas and into the wilds
where they can look at animals, rather than just studying them on the television
about nature- Chris Packham|
needs to be experienced first hand...
You have to be able to touch it,
see it, smell it and exercise your curiosity - and that's what Nature's Calendar
is all about.
Sometimes we're so overwhelmed by TV images of glamorous
animals in exotic locations, that we often forget that there's some really beautiful
wildlife at the bottom of our gardens.
I want to destroy the mystique
about wildlife. For me, home is where the heart is.
I've travelled all
over the world but my favourite animals are right here at home.
a myth that you have to be an expert to watch wildlife. You don't have to be a
You can be just like me and spend time watching
and studying these animals just for fun.
Take Badgers, for example.
Watching this nocturnal creature isn't a mystical art - it's practical common
Anyone can go out and find a Badger sett and have great fun doing
When I was younger, I studied Badger excrement for five years, but
you don't have to get quite so carried away with poo as I did!
been passionate about nature from an early age.
As a child I transformed
our home in Southampton into a menagerie bristling with a diversity of species.
Snakes, spiders, finches and foxes all soiled my parents' carpets!
ever-growing passion for wildlife has shaped my career.
I studied Badgers
for several years and this led to a degree in Zoology at Southampton University.
One of my early TV ventures was presenting the Children's BBC Wildlife
programme, The Really Wild Show.
It was so good that it won a BAFTA.
My more recent BBC programmes include X-Creatures and Watch Out as well as
Inside Out which has included a number of wildlife features.
of my favourite experiences during the filming of Nature's Calendar was watching
Dolphins in the Moray Firth.
The sight of these remarkable marine creatures
is truly awesome.
Another favourite moment during the series was my visit
to Bass Rock where I saw an amazing bird spectacle on the cliffs of this rocky
Thousands of birds pack onto its cliffs and stacks in summer - making
it bird central.
I've rarely seen so many birds up close and personal.
highlight of the series was my trip to Gilfach Farm in Wales, a good place to
watch Badgers in July and August.
And summer is a really excellent time
to watch some of the UK's birds - especially breeding birds such as Puffins and
Check out my amazing trip to Lundy Island.
the UK travel thousands and thousands of miles for a sight like this without realising
just what treasures we have on our own doorstep.
This is exactly what our
programme sets out to do - raise awareness of the depth and diversity of wildlife,
fauna and flora around the British Isles.
through a lens
on Nature's Calendar and Nest Box Special has been really great fun.
It has given me the chance to revisit some fantastic places around the British
Isles as well as finding new ones that made filming a real treat.
stayed in some dodgy 'Fawlty Towers' style hotels, endured bouts of sea sickness,
survived bad weather, and eaten some strange local delicacies, but it's all been
I wouldn't have swapped this experience for anything, and
I hope that you will feel the same way too when you watch the TV series.
Most of all, I hope that Nature's Calendar will make you feel as passionate about
nature as I do.
So get off your sofa, get out there and enjoy the great
British outdoors. Its sure to satisfy the most curious of creatures!
top nature spectacles
1. Seabird spectacle
at St Kilda
Remote, hostile and geologically spectacular, St
Kilda hosts Britain's biggest seabird colony and the sights, sounds and smells
of hundreds of thousands of birds all wheeling over this rock in a blue sky mean
it's an ornithological nirvana.
long as I live, the simple amazement of a caterpillar melting and then re-forming
as a butterfly, or the aquatic stage of a dragonfly emerging as an adult to be
one of the most dynamically flighted insects, is astonishing.
You can watch
it on the side of your own garden pond or in a jam jar on your dining room table.
3. Dolphins of Chanonry Point
Dolphins at Chanonry Point provide a spectacle which is totally surprising in
Often considered exotic creatures of the Caribbean and warm waters,
most people fantasise about getting close to them far overseas, but on the beach
here, you can get wet when they breach.
from a fairy tale - the idea that an animal can produce its own light, turn itself
on and off and give us such a simple yet beautiful spectacle in a patch of old,
dry grass appeals to our sense of childlike wonder.
I'm not really an acoustic person, and it's not
the complexity nor the beauty of all of their rich songs with all of its flutey
cadenzas, whistles and trills...
For me it's the fact that this unassuming
little brown bird sits in a bush and pumps out the volume. They are so loud that
if you get within a metre or two it hurts your ears.
fact that a fish can smell its way back to the very stream where it hatched as
an egg and left years before is frankly astonishing.
To see them so desperate
and so driven to return to their birthplace leaves you in awe of their overpowering
7. Bats swarming
them swirl, all chattering, in a great bat disco-go-round is amazing - the trick
is to try and imagine what's going on in their tiny bat brains.
it's a visual treat for us to see so many of these enigmatic and inaccessible
animals together, it's really all about the sound and what they're saying to one
8. Rare Orchids
an iconic and extremely beautiful plant which has been driven to the brink of
extinction by everything bad that we've done to our countryside in the last 50
Visiting the site where it can found is a bit like having an audience
with a precious plant princess, especially as you have to kneel down to get a
really good view.
numbers of what you normally perceive to be a rather dull, everyday bird can be
a fantastic experience.
It's a kaleidoscopic dizzying swirling display,
but the most impressive aspect is the sound
avian white noise.
Deer are Britain's biggest mammal.
They're brash, brutal and if you go
to Richmond Park they'll bash each other to pieces right before your eyes.
you're sensible you can get so close that you can smell their hormones. The closest
you can legally come to Britain's wildlife coliseum.
Meet the rest of the Nature's Calendar
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