What does the world’s greatest naturalist say about the Great Barrier Reef?

WITH Attenborough fever hitting the ABC in April 2016 – thanks to a stunning three part series about the glories of the Great Barrier Reef – we look at what the world’s greatest naturalist has to say about that brilliantly hued underwater world that sits in Australia’s front yard, and of course the series.

  • “It is fantastic, better than travelling to the moon.” As quoted to The 22/12/2015.
  • “The most exciting natural experience of my life was the first time I dived on a coral reef. Being on the Reef is a revelatory, thrilling and unbeatable experience and with this project, we are going to be able to share it with millions. As I entered the water I remember suddenly seeing these amazing multi-coloured species living in communities – just astounding and unforgettable beauty. So I’m very excited to be returning to the reef with all the latest technology and science to see one of the most important places on the planet in a whole new way.”
  • “Since my first visit, we have learned so much more about the reef; scientific breakthroughs have revealed astounding stories and with new technologies we are able to explore the reef in ways previously thought impossible. I knew that there was such a trove of natural history here, and that I had to come back to continue telling the story that I started in 1957.”
  • “Beyond the inherent value of such an ecosystem, we can look at what the Great Barrier Reef has done for us. What we have learned from it, and what we are still learning, are irreplaceable pieces of natural science. But the Great Barrier Reef is more than just that—it is also a tourist attraction, and an integral piece of Australia’s culture and history.”
  • “Showing branching corals, shoals of fish, sea urchins and multitude of different colours, a picture of a coral reef is one of the common cliches of travel magazines. But that makes a reef none the less wonderful when you first see it for yourself.”
  • “Diving here (the Reef) is a thing that anybody can do, but it’s a marvellous experience because you see some of the most beautiful creatures you ever saw in your life. Many of which you’ve never seen before, because on a coral reef there are all kinds of forms of life which you never knew existed.”
  • “If I go on a holiday I go to Italy or Tuscany … but if you are saying where do you go to have fun in making a film I say go to north Queensland anytime, anytime yes. Daintree or somewhere like that. It’s such a marvellous place, there’s so many things there that nobody has really seen or very little known about in the rest of the world. You’ve got the reef and the plateau, it’s just great.”

In his recent interview with US President Barack Obama, Attenborough says the 300-metre descent for the latest shoot was ‘just mindblowing’.

  • “The moment when you first dive on a coral reef with tanks so that you are weightless that is enough to make it a memorable event for you, but when you can do it on a reef with this multitude of multicoloured organisms, the likes of which you’ve never seen before, and you can just with a flick of your fin you can go down, or you can go up, and see these great sharks and things coming in from the ocean, that surely has to be one of the great sensations.”


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