David Attenborough: Life on TV
Sir David Attenborough (UK) has entertained and educated generations of viewers about all the plants and animals in our world. 🐯🌴🐵
His first TV show was nearly 70 years ago. Your grandparents probably watched it when they were kids!
Attenborough is joined by a co-host meerkat in the Kalahari Desert while filming The Life of Mammals series
Longest career as a TV presenter
- Sir David’s first TV show was Animal Disguises on BBC Children's Television on 2 Sep 1953.
- His most recent series, David Attenborough: A Life on Our Planet, was released on Netflix on 4 Oct 2020.
That span of 67 years 32 days means that he has enjoyed the longest career as a TV naturalist and also as a TV presenter overall. 👴
He has appeared on all types of TV throughout the decades - black & white, colour, HD and 3D!
Today, as the world faces the dangers of global warming, Sir David is doing everything he can to help save our environment. 🌍
We only know a tiny proportion about the complexity of the natural world. Wherever you look, there are still things we don’t know about and don’t understand. [...] There are always new things to find out if you go looking for them.
- Sir David Attenborough
Where Sir David’s adventure began
Sir David joined the way back BBC in 1952. 🤯
The next year, he made his first TV show, Animal Disguises.
Animal Disguises explored how colour and markings help animals to camouflage themselves, warn off predators and attract mates. 🐝 🐸
Zoo Quest, first broadcast in Dec 1954, was his first big hit.
Attenborough visited tropical countries, showing viewers animals such as pythons, Komodo dragons and birds of paradise on their televisions.
People in the UK were amazed – they’d never seen these exotic creatures before! 😍
In 1973, Sir David quit his job at the BBC to work on his dream: to create an epic, globe-trotting natural history series.
When it was televised in 1979, Life on Earth was a smash hit with the TV audience worldwide. 😍
No one had ever seen such beautiful, close-up videos of so many animals before, and Sir David presented lots of interesting info about them. 🐟🐞
One of the best moments in the series showed Sir David meeting the gorillas of the Virunga Mountains in Rwanda.
They are an endangered species, but some good news is that their population has tripled in the past 40 years.
It seems to me that the natural world is the greatest source of excitement; the greatest source of visual beauty; the greatest source of intellectual interest. It is the greatest source of so much in life that makes life worth living.
- Sir David Attenborough
Sir David’s lasting legacy
Sir David has a variety of animals and plants named after him. They include:
Zaglossus attenboroughi– a rare species of echidna from New Guinea.
Ctenocheloides attenboroughi- the Madagascan ghost shrimp.
Nepenthes attenboroughii- a carnivorous pitcher plant from the Philippines.
The Attenborosaurus- a long-necked marine reptile.
🌎 Saving our planet 🌎
As our environment continues to suffer, Sir David’s lifelong journey to save it also continues.
He is part of a council, overseen by Prince William, that aims to tackle 5 of the world’s biggest challenges:
• Protecting and restoring nature 🌲
• Cleaning our air 💨
• Reviving our oceans 🌊
• Building a waste-free world 🚯
• Fixing our climate ☀️
Now aged 95, Sir David continues to use his unmatched wisdom and personality to promote eco-friendly ideas and the importance of taking steps to repair the damage we’ve done to our world.
Sir David appears in Guinness World Records 2022 as part of our Hall of Fame celebrities.