Sir David Attenborough believes natural history programmes – and presenters like himself – are soon to be a thing of the past.
“I suspect that in the future you won’t need nature jockeys like me,” admitted the veteran broadcaster behind such landmark TV programmes as Life on Earth, Planet Earth and Frozen Planet. “In fact, you won’t need specialist cameramen as we have at the moment because making nature films has become easier and easier and easier.”
Attenborough was speaking at the launch of Natural Curiosities, his new series for UKTV channel Eden. The show, which will be broadcast in January, examines evolutionary anomalies like the giraffe’s elongated neck and the chameleon’s extremely long tongue.
Such programmes are facing extinction because of “dedicated amateurs” said Attenborough: “There are lots of dedicated people out there who want to do nothing more than film the mating of a dragonfly on a pond that’s maybe within a hundred yards from their home, and you’ll be putting that on the web.”
“Paradoxically, as human beings become more dominant in the world, and more detached from the actuality of the natural world, you’ll keep up with it by these kind of visions which dedicated amateurs will put on the web.”