David Attenborough

Born: May 8, 1926

Occupation: Broadcaster

Quotes of David Attenborough

David Attenborough

One in eight plant species face extinction.

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David Attenborough

People must feel that the natural world is important and valuable and beautiful and wonderful and an amazement and a pleasure.

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David Attenborough

An understanding of the natural world and what's in it is a source of not only a great curiosity but great fulfillment.

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David Attenborough

People are not going to care about animal conservation unless they think that animals are worthwhile.

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David Attenborough

I can mention many moments that were unforgettable and revelatory. But the most single revelatory three minutes was the first time I put on scuba gear and dived on a coral reef. It's just the unbelievable...

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David Attenborough

I just wish the world was twice as big and half of it was still unexplored.

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David Attenborough

There are some four million different kinds of animals and plants in the world. Four million different solutions to the problems of staying alive.

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David Attenborough

What I am interested in with birds, just as I am with spiders or monkeys, is what they do and why they do it.

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David Attenborough

Dealing with global warming doesn't mean we have all got to suddenly stop breathing. Dealing with global warming means that we have to stop waste, and if you travel for no reason whatsoever, that is a...

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David Attenborough

Getting to places like Bangkok or Singapore was a hell of a sweat. But when you got there it was the back of beyond. It was just a series of small tin sheds.

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David Attenborough

It is that range of biodiversity that we must care for - the whole thing - rather than just one or two stars.

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David Attenborough

I don't run a car, have never run a car. I could say that this is because I have this extremely tender environmentalist conscience, but the fact is I hate driving.

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David Attenborough

The question is, are we happy to suppose that our grandchildren may never be able to see an elephant except in a picture book?

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David Attenborough

Crying wolf is a real danger.

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David Attenborough

Everyone likes birds. What wild creature is more accessible to our eyes and ears, as close to us and everyone in the world, as universal as a bird?

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David Attenborough

I think a major element of jetlag is psychological. Nobody ever tells me what time it is at home.

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David Attenborough

Birds are the most popular group in the animal kingdom. We feed them and tame them and think we know them. And yet they inhabit a world which is really rather mysterious.

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David Attenborough

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...

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David Attenborough

Being in touch with the natural world is crucial.

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David Attenborough

If I can bicycle, I bicycle.

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David Attenborough

As far as I'm concerned, if there is a supreme being then He chose organic evolution as a way of bringing into existence the natural world... which doesn't seem to me to be necessarily blasphemous at all.

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David Attenborough

We keep putting on programmes about famine in Ethiopia; that's what's happening. Too many people there. They can't support themselves - and it's not an inhuman thing to say. It's the case. Until humanity...

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David Attenborough

Well, I'm having a good time. Which makes me feel guilty too. How very English.

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David Attenborough

The only way to save a rhinoceros is to save the environment in which it lives, because there's a mutual dependency between it and millions of other species of both animals and plants.

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David Attenborough

It's a moral question about whether we have the right to exterminate species.

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David Attenborough

All our environmental problems become easier to solve with fewer people and harder - and ultimately impossible to solve - with ever more people.

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David Attenborough

Before the BBC, I joined the Navy in order to travel.

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David Attenborough

I believe the Abominable Snowman may be real. I think there may be something in that.

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David Attenborough

I don't approve of sunbathing, and it's bad for you.

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David Attenborough

I suffer much less than many of my colleagues. I am perfectly able to go to Australia and film within three hours of arrival.

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David Attenborough

I'm luckier than my grandfather, who didn't move more than five miles from the village in which he was born.

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David Attenborough

I'm not a propagandist, I'm not a polemicist; my primary interest is just looking at and trying to understand how animals work.

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David Attenborough

I'm not an animal lover if that means you think things are nice if you can pat them, but I am intoxicated by animals.

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David Attenborough

I'm swanning round the world looking at the most fabulously interesting things. Such good fortune.

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David Attenborough

If I can make programmes when I'm 95, that would be fine. But I would think I'll have had enough by then.

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David Attenborough

London has fine museums, the British Library is one of the greatest library institutions in the world... It's got everything you want, really.

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David Attenborough

Natural history is not about producing fables.

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David Attenborough

The climate, the economic situation, rising birth rates; none of these things give me a lot of hope or reason to be optimistic.

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David Attenborough

There is no question that climate change is happening; the only arguable point is what part humans are playing in it.

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David Attenborough

You have to steer a course between not appalling people, but at the same time not misleading them.

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David Attenborough

You know, it is a terrible thing to appear on television, because people think that you actually know what you're talking about.

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David Attenborough

I mean, it is an extraordinary thing that a large proportion of your country and my country, of the citizens, never see a wild creature from dawn 'til dusk, unless it's a pigeon, which isn't really wild,...

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David Attenborough

I often get letters, quite frequently, from people who say how they like the programmes a lot, but I never give credit to the almighty power that created nature.

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David Attenborough

I've been to Nepal, but I'd like to go to Tibet. It must be a wonderful place to go. I don't think there's anything there, but it would be a nice place to visit.

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David Attenborough

If you watch animals objectively for any length of time, you're driven to the conclusion that their main aim in life is to pass on their genes to the next generation.

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David Attenborough

Many individuals are doing what they can. But real success can only come if there is a change in our societies and in our economics and in our politics.

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David Attenborough

Steve Irwin did wonderful conservation work but I was uncomfortable about some of his stunts. Even if animals aren't aware that you are not treating them with respect, the viewers are.

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David Attenborough

The whole of science, and one is tempted to think the whole of the life of any thinking man, is trying to come to terms with the relationship between yourself and the natural world. Why are you here, and...

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David Attenborough

All we can hope for is that the thing is going to slowly and imperceptibly shift. All I can say is that 50 years ago there were no such thing as environmental policies.

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David Attenborough

Apart from anything else, I am designed by evolution, like we all are: if we see a little thing like that, big eyes, tiny nose, we go 'aaah'. That's what evolution does. We are programmed to do that. So...

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David Attenborough

Cameramen are among the most extraordinarily able and competent people I know. They have to have an insight into natural history that gives them a sixth sense of what the creature is going to do, so they...

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David Attenborough

I don't think we are going to become extinct. We're very clever and extremely resourceful - and we will find ways of preserving ourselves, of that I'm sure. But whether our lives will be as rich as they...

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David Attenborough

I had a huge advantage when I started 50 years ago - my job was secure. I didn't have to promote myself. These days there's far more pressure to make a mark, so the temptation is to make adventure television...

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David Attenborough

I would be absolutely astounded if population growth and industrialisation and all the stuff we are pumping into the atmosphere hadn't changed the climatic balance. Of course it has. There is no valid...

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David Attenborough

I'd like to see the giant squid. Nobody has ever seen one. I could tell you people who have spent thousands and thousands of pounds trying to see giant squid. I mean, we know they exist because we have...

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David Attenborough

I'm absolutely strict about it. When I land, I put my watch right, and I don't care what I feel like, I will go to bed at half past eleven. If that means going to bed early or late, that's what I live...

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David Attenborough

In the old days... it was a basic, cardinal fact that producers didn't have opinions. When I was producing natural history programmes, I didn't use them as vehicles for my own opinion. They were factual...

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David Attenborough

It is vital that there is a narrator figure whom people believe. That's why I never do commercials. If I started saying that margarine was the same as motherhood, people would think I was a liar.

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David Attenborough

It was regarded as a responsibility of the BBC to provide programs which have a broad spectrum of interest, and if there was a hole in that spectrum, then the BBC would fill it.

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David Attenborough

It's coming home to roost over the next 50 years or so. It's not just climate change; it's sheer space, places to grow food for this enormous horde. Either we limit our population growth or the natural...

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David Attenborough

It's extraordinary how self-obsessed human beings are. The things that people always go on about is, 'tell us about us', 'tell us about the first human being'. We are so self-obsessed with our own history....

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David Attenborough

People talk about doom-laden scenarios happening in the future: they are happening in Africa now. You can see it perfectly clearly. Periodic famines are due to too many people living on land that can't...

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David Attenborough

Television of course actually started in Britain in 1936, and it was a monopoly, and there was only one broadcaster and it operated on a license which is not the same as a government grant.

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David Attenborough

The climate suits me, and London has the greatest serious music that you can hear any day of the week in the world - you think it's going to be Vienna or Paris or somewhere, but if you go to Vienna or...

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David Attenborough

The most extraordinary thing about trying to piece together the missing links in the evolutionary story is that when you do find a missing link and put it in the story, you suddenly need all these other...

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David Attenborough

To suggest that God specifically created a worm to torture small African children is blasphemy as far as I can see. The Archbishop of Canterbury doesn't believe that.

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David Attenborough

Very few species have survived unchanged. There's one called lingula, which is a little shellfish, a little brachiopod about the size of my fingernail, that has survived for 500 million years, but it's...

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David Attenborough

We really need to kick the carbon habit and stop making our energy from burning things. Climate change is also really important. You can wreck one rainforest then move, drain one area of resources and...

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David Attenborough

You can only get really unpopular decisions through if the electorate is convinced of the value of the environment. That's what natural history programmes should be for.

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David Attenborough

The future of life on earth depends on our ability to take action. Many individuals are doing what they can, but real success can only come if there's a change in our societies and our economics and in...

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David Attenborough

I find it far more awesome, wonderful, that creation; our appearance in the world; should be the culmination, or at least one of the latest products of 3,000 Million years of organic evolution, than a...

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David Attenborough

They always mean beautiful things like hummingbirds. I always reply by saying that I think of a little child in east Africa with a worm burrowing through his eyeball. The worm cannot live in any other...

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David Attenborough

It's like saying that two and two equals four, but if you wish to believe it, it could also be five ... Evolution is not a theory; it is a fact, every bit as much as the historical fact that William the...

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David Attenborough

Its about cherishing the woodland at the bottom of your garden or the stream that runs through it. It affects every aspect of life.

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David Attenborough

Since when has Finland been a rotten place to live in?

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David Attenborough

Children start off reading in books about lions and giraffes and so on, but they also-if theyre lucky enough and have reasonable privileges of any human being-are able to go into a garden and turn over...

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David Attenborough

There are perfectly good independent small nations.

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David Attenborough

The reverse side of the coin in having this extraordinary ability to go anywhere, is that no one anywhere is remote any more.

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David Attenborough

It never really occurred to me to believe in God.

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David Attenborough

Nothing in the natural world makes sense - except when seen in the light of evolution

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David Attenborough

You've got to be fairly solemn [about the environment]. I mean the mere notion that there are three times as many people on Earth as there were when I started making television. How can the Earth accommodate...

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David Attenborough

I don't think whole populations are villainous, but Americans are just extraordinarily unaware of all kinds of things. If you live in the middle of that vast continent, with apparently everything your...

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David Attenborough

I like animals. I like natural history. The travel bit is not the important bit. The travel bit is what you have to do in order to go and look at animals.

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David Attenborough

What humans do over the next 50 years will determine the fate of all life on the planet.

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David Attenborough

Opponents say natural selection is not a theory supported by observation or experiment; that it is not based on fact; and that it cannot be proved. Well, no, you cannot prove the theory to people who won't...

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David Attenborough

‎Using his burgeoning intelligence, this most successful of all mammals has exploited the environment to produce food for an ever increasing population. Instead of controlling the environment for the...

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David Attenborough

How could I look my grandchildren in the eye and say I knew what was happening to the world and did nothing.

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David Attenborough

Can a growing human population still leave space for wildlife?

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David Attenborough

I have no doubt that the fundamental problem the planet faces is the enormous increase in the human population

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David Attenborough

The human population can no longer be allowed to grow in the same old uncontrollable way. If we do not take charge of our population size, then nature will do it for us and it is the poor people of the...

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David Attenborough

Instead of controlling the environment for the benefit of the population, perhaps we should control the population to ensure the survival of our environment

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David Attenborough

[W]hen we look at the graphs of rising ocean temperatures, rising carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and so on, we know that they are climbing far more steeply than can be accounted for by the natural oscillation...

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David Attenborough

I don’t know [why we're here]. People sometimes say to me, ‘Why don’t you admit that the humming bird, the butterfly, the Bird of Paradise are proof of the wonderful things produced by Creation?’...

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David Attenborough

If we and the rest of the back-boned animals were to disappear overnight, the rest of the world would get on pretty well. But if the invertebrates were to disappear, the world's ecosystems would collapse

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David Attenborough

We can now destroy or we can cherish-the choice is ours.

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David Attenborough

The correct scientific response to something that is not understood must always be to look harder for the explanation, not give up and assume a supernatural cause.

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David Attenborough

I'm not over-fond of animals. I am merely astounded by them.

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David Attenborough

The fact is that no species has ever had such wholesale control over everything on earth, living or dead, as we now have. That lays upon us, whether we like it or not, an awesome responsibility. In our...

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David Attenborough

The truth is: the natural world is changing. And we are totally dependent on that world. It provides our food, water and air. It is the most precious thing we have and we need to defend it.

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David Attenborough

Anyone who believes in indefinite growth on a physically finite planet is either mad or an economist

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David Attenborough

This last chapter .. may have given the impression that somehow man is the ultimate triumph of evolution, that all these millions of years of development have had no purpose other than to put him on earth....

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David Attenborough

There's a small worm called Loa Loa Filariasis. This parasite can survive in one environment exclusively- namely, underneath the skin and inside the eyes of human beings. Children and the elderly in tropical...

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