Somerset Wildlife Trust

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Birds Britannia

 29th Oct 2010

How the British learned to love birds…

puffin ©

We British are more obsessed with birds than any other nation on earth. From feeding ducks in the park to listening for the first cuckoo in spring, from inspiring some of our best loved poetry to filling our stomachs, and from boosting the economy to providing comfort during times of crisis, birds have long been at the centre of our nation’s history. This unique relationship between the British and our birds reveals as much about us as it does about the birds themselves.

Birds Britannia is a new series that takes us on a journey from exploitation, through appreciation, to delight. It tells of how, for centuries, we regarded birds purely as objects to be used for our benefit ­ for food and fuel, sport and recreation. And how gradually, over time, we came to value them, cherish them, and finally to understand what they truly mean to us.

BBC Natural History

Made by the BBC Natural History Unit for BBC Four, the series runs 9 pm from Wednesday 3rd November:

Wednesday 3rd November: Garden Birds
Wednesday 10th November: Waterbirds
Wednesday 17th November: Seabirds
Wednesday 24th November: Countryside Birds


Contributors include: David Attenborough, Mark Cocker, Jane Fearnley-Whittingstall, Christopher Frayling, Kate Humble, Rob Lambert, Helen Macdonald, Jeremy Mynott, Desmond Morris, Andrew Motion, Bill Oddie, Tony Soper. 

Narrated by: Bill Paterson

Series Producer: Stephen Moss