South Scotland

Dumfries nature festival seeks 'next Attenborough'

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Media captionThere are more than 100 events during the Wild Spring Festival

The 10th annual Dumfries and Galloway Wild Spring Festival is hoping to find the next Chris Packham or Sir David Attenborough.

More than 100 events will be held between 29 March and 31 May, including shark conservation, badger watching and horseback treasure hunts.

Last year, the area was designated a Unesco World Network of Biosphere Reserve.

It is one of 598 Unesco reserves worldwide, with only three in the UK.

For the first time, the festival will offer a dedicated series of activities during weekends in May in conjunction with the local tourist board.

Wilma Finlay, chair of Destination Dumfries and Galloway, said: "We would like to challenge more young naturalists to set their alarm clock and take part in one of the Wild Spring Festival's many unique and surprising festival adventures that will get them up close to the wide array of animals, mammals, birds, fish and fauna.

"From sharks, frogs and fishtails to badgers, red kites, barnacle geese and buzzards and from red deer, reptiles and red squirrels to bats, moths and bugs - there is a huge array of wildlife for them to discover throughout Dumfries and Galloway.

"Many of the festival events are free and most are hosted by some of the country's best wildlife experts, offering a fantastic opportunity for all budding Chris Packhams, Sir David Attenboroughs or Kate Humbles."

The Unesco World Network of Biosphere Reserves seeks to encourage conservation as well as sustainable use.

The festival is also marking the Year of Natural Scotland 2013.

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