Shared Planet

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Albatross And Fishing2014102820141103 (R4)

Can we share the ocean with albatrosses?

Albatrosses are giant flying seabirds that inhabit the southern oceans. Many species have been studied intensively over decades on their breeding grounds in the sub-Antarctic and the Pacific. Clever studies involving satellite tracking and simple observations from ships have shown they can disperse and forage across the whole of the southern ocean. Monitoring of their populations has shown a marked decline in their numbers since the 1980's so much so all albatross species are now threatened. A key cause of albatross decline was found quickly after the decline in populations was noticed; long-line fishing hooks baited with squid and floating on the surface after being deployed was an easy meal for an ocean scavenger and often their last. Shared Planet visits this story many years after it broke to report a cautious success on the high level conservation measures that were put in place involving biologists and the fishing industry. On this trajectory, it seems, we might be able to share the ocean with albatrosses and catch fish.

Are We Getting Used To Less Wildlife?2014092320140929

The diversity and abundance of wildlife is declining across the world. As people grow older they notice the changes but for each new generation the baseline is reset. Is each generation is getting used to living with less and less wildlife? With so many other distractions do young people today notice the wildlife around them? Monty Don explores whether shifting baselines are a problem for conservation or simply inevitable in a system already subject to natural fluctuations.

Beavers In Business2014110420141110 (R4)

The European beaver was hunted to extinction for its fur, meat and the aromatic secretions from sacs near its anal glands. Now it is coming back throughout Europe , either naturally or by being introduced, as here in the UK. Wherever they settle they transform the landscape by building dams and channels and create a landscape of pools and watercourses that hold back flood water, pollution and silt from entering the main rivers. In these times of severe weather events and flooding beavers are doing for free what landscape engineers would do at great cost. Viewing nature in terms of the services it provides, or evaluating nature in financial terms, is a growing movement in conservation. Nature can be seen on balance sheets and hopefully respected for all that it gives us for free. But there is concern that monetising nature leaves it open to the ruthless world of finance and trading and diverts attention away from the real aims of conservation. Monty Don grabs this thorny issue and chairs a debate between the writer and conservationist Tony Juniper and the economist Clive Spash. There are no easy answers but plenty of food for thought.

Belugas2014090220140908

The St Lawrence River in south east Canada is a popular spot for many species of whale including a resident small population of the world's only entirely white whale, the beluga. Plans to build a new terminal in the St Lawrence to ship oil from northern Canada to the rest of the world have made some of the residents of one particular tourist town particularly concerned. The protesters claim the development will be right at the heart of the belugas critical habitat, which at worst could threaten the future survival of this small population. As the demand for oil increases are some wildlife casualties inevitable? And as attention turns further north into the icy waters of the Arctic are we adequately prepared to clean up in the event of a spill?

Blue Whales - When Giants Collide2014111120141117 (R4)

Blue whales are increasingly being hit by ships, especially off the coast of California. As whale numbers recover from hunting and the number of ships that ply the oceans increases this is a growing problem. What can be done? Monty Don explores this little known threat to whales, a threat that is found in all oceans all over the world and effects most species of whale. It seems that the welcome news that whale numbers are slowly rising is being countered by concern over ship strikes, most of which are fatal. A simple solution is to slow the speed of ships down to around 10 knots, but this has financial implications for the shipping industry, so a balance has to be struck. Technology could help, but it is expensive, not reliable in choppy seas and in the case of sonar could fill the ocean with more noise. How can we share the oceans with giants and still move 90% of traded goods by boat?

Community Protection20140114

Deer Management20140107

Do We Care Too Much About Nature?20131231

Giant Otters In The Pantanal2014090920140915

Monty Don explores the future of the Pantanal and its resident the giant otter.

The Pantanal is a huge wetland which lies predominantly within the borders of Brazil. It boasts a diverse array of wildlife including the giant otter, which at two meters long is the world's largest species of otter. Protected by its remote location and the difficulty and expense of developing wetlands, the Pantanal has remained largely intact. However Brazil has seen years of rapid economic development, and while growth may have slowed for now, it's only a matter of time before the opportunities the Pantanal holds will be worth the costs. In this episode Monty Don finds out what the future holds for the Pantanal.

Ground-nesting Birds2014091620140922

Can dog-walkers share the planet with ground-nesting seabirds?

Ground nesting birds such as terns are particularly vulnerable to being disturbed. People are increasingly accessing the countryside for all sorts of recreation from walking and mountain biking to bird watching and photography. Is disturbance really a problem for wildlife? And how can we limit the effect while still encouraging fun and healthy ways to spend our time.

Half And Half2015011320150119 (R4)

Should half the earth be set aside for wildlife? Monty Don and panel of experts discuss.

The world has lost so much wildlife some conservationists think half the earth should be set aside for nature to ensure the world can continue to provide all the services we need such as clean water, unpolluted air and soils, healthy food and so on. But one recent study shows that 50% of wildlife has disappeared in the last 40 years. As human population grows and pressure on resources increases many feel there needs to be a bold plan to ensure we can share the planet with other forms of life so that they and us can continue. One proposition is called Half Earth - make half of the earth just for nature. The vision is for a meandering network of nature corridors that open out into huge parks set aside for wildlife. In a special programme from the Natural History Museum in London Monty Don and a panel of experts in subjects ranging from conservation science to urban planning and economics discuss whether this could work?

Hen Harriers: Trust In Conservation2014102120141027 (R4)

Hen harriers are persecuted because they eat grouse. Can a solution be found?

Hen harriers are persecuted in the British Isles because they eat grouse. Seals cause problems for salmon fishermen; lions eat the livestock of pastoralists in Africa and so on. All over the world there are conflicts between people and wildlife, often with devastating consequences. In Shared Planet this week Monty Don looks at how we are approaching solving these issues, who is taking the bull by the horns and getting people around a table to come up with a shared solution? Conflict resolution is growing area that brings together scientists, local people, businesses, NGOs and many others who are affected by wildlife conflict. It is a demanding task finding a solution that all parties feel they can accept, on a par with the negotiations undertaken with trade unions by ACAS. This new area for conservation brings political and social science to sit alongside traditional conservation ideas. Monty Don investigates.

Insects And Street Lights2014101420141020 (R4)

Artificial lighting is ubiquitous in the developed world - but the effects of night time illumination on wildlife are not yet fully understood. While we know that artificial light changes the behaviour of some animals we're still a long way from knowing whether those changes can damage wildlife populations. This week Monty Don finds out what we do know with particular regard to an important but often overlooked group of animals - insects.

Lemurs out on a Limb20150105

Lemurs out on a Limb20150105

The lemurs of Madagascar are the most endangered mammals on earth - driven to the edge of survival by habitat loss and hunting. Many different lemurs inhabit different parts of the island's forests but as these are cleared for development, food and fuel, so the lemurs are disappearing from the face of the earth. Monty Don explores what is being done to save these endearing mammals, including communities working together to find alternative ways of living that allows them to live in peace. Eco-tourism, community conservation projects and education are all being used to help local people as well as tourists value the lemurs, but is it too little too late? And is there the political will to save them?

Lemurs out on a Limb20150105

The lemurs of Madagascar are the most endangered mammals on earth - driven to the edge of survival by habitat loss and hunting. Many different lemurs inhabit different parts of the island's forests but as these are cleared for development, food and fuel, so the lemurs are disappearing from the face of the earth. Monty Don explores what is being done to save these endearing mammals, including communities working together to find alternative ways of living that allows them to live in peace. Eco-tourism, community conservation projects and education are all being used to help local people as well as tourists value the lemurs, but is it too little too late? And is there the political will to save them?

Mahogany2014100720141013 (R4)

Beautiful and durable, mahogany has been highly prized and traded internationally for centuries. Reaching the impressive height of 60 meters or more they are true giants of the forest. Selective logging of mahogany was unchecked across much of its range until international agreements restricted its trade. But has this been enough? Monty Don finds out more about the big-leaf mahogany and whether we can continue to use its beautiful wood without forfeiting its future.

Mangroves - Putting Nature Back?2014111820141124 (R4)

Can we share the planet with mangrove forest?

Mangroves - Putting Nature Back?20141118

Monty Don will be posing to experts who specialise in large scale restoration projects, like the Can Gio mangrove in Vietnam which was destroyed by Agent Orange during the Vietnam War, whether a restored mangrove forest can ever be the same as the original.. Some argue that we could never hope to reproduce what we destroyed, but as long as what we create functions and is biodiverse, then that is all that matters. Others say that in our fast changing world there is no permanence and our best strategy is to build in resilience for the future. Difficult, fascinating problems that raise many questions about our understanding of nature and wilderness.

Natural Symbols20150120

In the final programme of the series a panel of experts from different disciplines choose an object they feel represents our relationship with nature. Recorded in the Natural History Museum in London in front of an audience Monty Don explores how our connection to nature has changed through time and what we may need to do to ensure we live on a vibrant planet in the future. The four guests from different areas of expertise from archaeology to conservation science to oceanography choose one thing that tells a big story. Monty Don explores how each object shows how our view of nature has changed since our time as hunter gatherers. Over the thousands of years we have lived on earth we have become increasingly divorced from the nitty gritty of the natural world. Where are we heading and what do we need to do to enable all of life to share this one planet? As population increases and stress on resources gets more intense there has never been a more important time to assess our impact on planet earth.

Ocean Governance20140128

Ocean Plastic And Seabirds2014093020141006 (R4)

Plastic litter has the knack of finding its way into the ocean. Unfortunately this means that seabirds that have, until relatively recently, been safe to assume that the objects floating on the surface are food are getting a stomach full of trash. Shared Planet finds out how bad the situation is for seabirds like the fulmar and the simple things we can do to reduce the problem.

Orangutans And Drones2014120920141215 (R4)

Orang-utans live in the peat rainforests of Malaysia and Indonesia. It can be tough terrain to travel through on foot so studying and surveying wild orang-utans is difficult and dangerous. Can drones help to answer questions about the number and distribution of the 'people of the forest' and monitor illegal logging of this endangered ape's habitat? This week Shared Planet explores the potential of drones to help us share the planet with orang-utans - but also explores the possible pitfalls of using this controversial technology.

Orangutans And Drones20141209

Orang-utans live in the peat rainforests of Malaysia and Indonesia. It can be tough terrain to travel through on foot so studying and surveying wild orang-utans is difficult and dangerous. Can drones help to answer questions about the number and distribution of the 'people of the forest' and monitor illegal logging of this endangered ape's habitat? This week Shared Planet explores the potential of drones to help us share the planet with orang-utans - but also explores the possible pitfalls of using this controversial technology.

Pit Stops and Stopovers20141223

Pit Stops And Stopovers2014122320141229 (R4)

The Amur Falcon and the Swan Goose are both migrating birds. These birds, like many other migrating birds, need to rest, feed and refresh en route. Some journeys are thousands of miles and rich feeding habitat is disappearing for development. Wetlands, estuaries and coastlines are often the focus of industrial expansion, tourism and new housing, yet they are also the places most needed by migrating waders. Inland there are problems too as water bodies, scrub and insect rich grasslands are quickly taken over for agriculture and urban development. What can be done? In Nagaland in north-eastern India the Amur falcon has recently congregated at a newly built reservoir to feed on the rich insect life that it supports. Hundreds of thousands, millions even, of these small birds of prey come together for a few days and in the past have been heavily hunted and trapped for food. Yet local people, encouraged by NGOs and the churches, have decided to let the birds be. In America the migrating monarch butterfly is being helped by people planting nectar rich flowers and protecting the trees they like to roost in. Some of the challenges are huge, others easy to solve. Monty Don explores the trials of migration.

Pit Stops and Stopovers20141223

The Amur Falcon and the Swan Goose are both migrating birds. These birds, like many other migrating birds, need to rest, feed and refresh en route. Some journeys are thousands of miles and rich feeding habitat is disappearing for development. Wetlands, estuaries and coastlines are often the focus of industrial expansion, tourism and new housing, yet they are also the places most needed by migrating waders. Inland there are problems too as water bodies, scrub and insect rich grasslands are quickly taken over for agriculture and urban development. What can be done? In Nagaland in north-eastern India the Amur falcon has recently congregated at a newly built reservoir to feed on the rich insect life that it supports. Hundreds of thousands, millions even, of these small birds of prey come together for a few days and in the past have been heavily hunted and trapped for food. Yet local people, encouraged by NGOs and the churches, have decided to let the birds be. In America the migrating monarch butterfly is being helped by people planting nectar rich flowers and protecting the trees they like to roost in. Some of the challenges are huge, others easy to solve. Monty Don explores the trials of migration.

Sharing Our Lives With Wolves2014121620141222 (R4)

Few creatures have infiltrated our psyche as much as wolves. They haunt our imagination and appear in our stories, myths and legends. They are at once the embodiment of the devil and of the wild, enough dog that we relate to them, but also rugged, unpredictable and wild. They roam vast, untamed landscapes and then appear in our midst, hunting sheep and spreading fear. Our relationship has been so conflicting that they were almost eradicated from the earth by the end of the 19th Century. But since being protected they are slowly coming back in both Europe and America. Are we now able to live with them? Do we want to? Monty Don explores the enigma that is the wolf and looks at how our attitudes have shaped their destiny.

Sharing Our Lives With Wolves20141216

Few creatures have infiltrated our psyche as much as wolves. They haunt our imagination and appear in our stories, myths and legends. They are at once the embodiment of the devil and of the wild, enough dog that we relate to them, but also rugged, unpredictable and wild. They roam vast, untamed landscapes and then appear in our midst, hunting sheep and spreading fear. Our relationship has been so conflicting that they were almost eradicated from the earth by the end of the 19th Century. But since being protected they are slowly coming back in both Europe and America. Are we now able to live with them? Do we want to? Monty Don explores the enigma that is the wolf and looks at how our attitudes have shaped their destiny.

Snapping Turtles - Taking the Long View2014112520141201 (R4)

What do elephants, snapping turtles and guillemots have in common? They are all examples of 'long-lived' animals with some species living longer than the careers of the scientists who study them. In this episode of Shared Planet Monty Don talks to Tim Birkhead and Phyllis Lee, both scientists who have studied the behaviour of long-lived species and both argue that you discover insights into long-lived animals can will help their conservation and our ability to share the planet with them.

Snapping Turtles - Taking the Long View2014112520141201 (R4)

What do elephants, snapping turtles and guillemots have in common? They are all examples of 'long-lived' animals with some species living longer than the careers of the scientists who study them. In this episode of Shared Planet Monty Don talks to Tim Birkhead and Phyllis Lee, both scientists who have studied the behaviour of long-lived species and both argue that you discover insights into long-lived animals can will help their conservation and our ability to share the planet with them.

Snapping Turtles - Taking The Long View2014112520141201 (R4)

What do elephants, snapping turtles and guillemots have in common? They are all examples of 'long-lived' animals with some species living longer than the careers of the scientists who study them. In this episode of Shared Planet Monty Don talks to Tim Birkhead and Phyllis Lee, both scientists who have studied the behaviour of long-lived species and both argue that you discover insights into long-lived animals can will help their conservation and our ability to share the planet with them.

Snapping Turtles - Taking The Long View20141125

What do elephants, snapping turtles and guillemots have in common? They are all examples of 'long-lived' animals with some species living longer than the careers of the scientists who study them. In this episode of Shared Planet Monty Don talks to Tim Birkhead and Phyllis Lee, both scientists who have studied the behaviour of long-lived species and both argue that you discover insights into long-lived animals can will help their conservation and our ability to share the planet with them.

The Future Of Corals20150106

The Future Of Corals20150106
The Future Of Corals2015010620150112 (R4)

Coral reefs are renowned for their beauty and diversity, and they provide us with a wondrous spectacle. Full of colourful fish, patrolled by sharks and visited by a host of exotic creatures from manta rays to turtles, they bring breath-taking colour to our seas. But what is their future? As our climate warms, so too do the oceans and corals are highly sensitive to changes in temperature. The increasing level of CO2 in our atmosphere means more is dissolved in seawater, making our oceans ever more acidic and hindering their ability to build their structures. Mass coral bleaching, when large areas of corals die and turn white, was unknown before the 1980s, now they are increasingly common in many areas of the ocean. The lack of build-up of new coral due to acidification is now measurable and many scientists are wondering how long coral reefs will survive. Monty Dom explores the future of coral in our stressed oceans and explores what can be done.

The Future Of Corals20150106

Coral reefs are renowned for their beauty and diversity, and they provide us with a wondrous spectacle. Full of colourful fish, patrolled by sharks and visited by a host of exotic creatures from manta rays to turtles, they bring breath-taking colour to our seas. But what is their future? As our climate warms, so too do the oceans and corals are highly sensitive to changes in temperature. The increasing level of CO2 in our atmosphere means more is dissolved in seawater, making our oceans ever more acidic and hindering their ability to build their structures. Mass coral bleaching, when large areas of corals die and turn white, was unknown before the 1980s, now they are increasingly common in many areas of the ocean. The lack of build-up of new coral due to acidification is now measurable and many scientists are wondering how long coral reefs will survive. Monty Dom explores the future of coral in our stressed oceans and explores what can be done.

The Medicinal Planet20140121

Wildlife And Drought In East Africa2014120220141208 (R4)

As East Africa gets hotter and drier livestock are increasingly being grazed inside wildlife reserves. Inevitably this leads to predation by big cats. What does the future hold for the pastoralists, wildlife and the way of life of the Samburu? Monty Don explores this increasingly difficult issue with a field report from Samburu where a severe drought is taking its toll. Climate change predictions show that conditions will get worse and wildlife experts discuss the challenges ahead for nature and people.

Wildlife And Drought In East Africa20141202

Monty Don presents the series that explores the complex interface between a growing human population and wildlife.

0101The Problem Of Population2013061120130617

Monty Don presents Shared Planet, the series that looks at the crunch point between human population and the natural world. In this programme Howard Stableford reports from Connecticut on the complex decline of the once very ubiquitous Chimney Swift, a story Monty Don believes is the paradigm for the series. The wider issues of human population and nature are explored in the studio with Lord May, past president of The Royal Society and from Vienna, Professor Wolfgang Lutz, a specialist in human population dynamics.

Monty Don presents Shared Planet, the series that looks at the crunch point between human population and the natural world. In this programme Howard Stableford reports from Conneticut on the complex decline of the once very ubiquitous Chimney Swift, a story Monty Don believes is the paradigm for the series. The wider issues of human population and nature are exploreed in the studio with Lord May, past president of The Royal Society and from Vienna, Professor Wolfgang Lutz, a specialist in human population dynamics.

0102Can We Save It All?2013061820130624

With so many species and habitats under threat, how do we decide what to conserve?

A giant hamster in Alsace provides Monty with a puzzling dilemma, how do we decide what to conserve? With so many pressures on so many creatures and habitats how to decide where to put our energy and money is difficult. Monty Don explores the issues, do we save the creatures that appeal to us or those that are most useful? Is a beetle better to save than a hamster? Shared Planet explores the crunch point where the natural world and human population meet. Monty Don presents the series and invites a field report each week from around the world where people and wildlife are negotiating the same space: different stories, different outcomes, and different issues. How is the Giant Hamster negotiating it's bit of the planet in the Alsace region with land owners who need its home for crops. Should we try to save everything?

0103Global Collapse2013062520130701

Monty Don explores the link between the loss of wildlife abundance and human activity.

Monty Don presents Shared Planet, the series explores the crunch point between human population and the natural world. In this weeks programme we have a report from Northern Kenya about the Grevy's Zebra, the worlds most stripy Zebra and a species in decline for many different reasons, all of which appear to be attributed with human activity. Monty Don examines the wider issues of species abundance and people and interviews one of the authors of a recent paper " Can a Collapse of Civilisation be Avoided" published by The Proceedings of The Royal Society with one of its authors Professor Paul Ehrlich from Stanford University. Also in the programme Dr Joe Smith from The Open University, an expert in environment and the media, exploring how the media should keep up with such apocalyptic headlines.

0104Valuing Nature2013070220130708

How much is a honey bee worth? Can you put a price tag on a mountain? Monty Don explores the value of nature. Some believe the only way to preserve nature is to show that it can pay its way in a world driven by money, others disagree saying nature is too precious to be left to the whim of markets. Monty Don discusses if we should put a price tag on nature and if so how do we value it? This week there is a report from St. Andrews in North East Scotland where Trai Anfield explores the value of the Eden Estuary to both nature conversation and human activity. Estuaries and mud flats protect our coastlines and filter water entering the sea, as well as provide food for many birds - but here and all over the world coastlines are under threat from development. Jonathan Aylen from the Manchester Business School thinks valuing eco-system services is a good idea in theory but very hard to put into practice. Environmentalist Tony Juniper and Dr Bill Adams from the Department of Geography at University of Cambridge also join Monty in the studio to discuss the pros and cons of valuing nature.

How much is a honey bee worth? Monty Don explores the value of nature.

0105Building In Wildlife2013070920130715

Monty Don presents Shared Planet, the series that looks at the crunch point between human population and the natural world. In this week's programme the focus is towns and cities, with a report from North America about their largest Swallow, the Purple Martin. Purple Martins are totally dependent on human habitation east of the Rockies for nest sites. West of the mountain range they largely nest in their ancestral way using abandoned woodpecker cavities. As we clear land to build the world's towns and cities what is the impact on the natural world and are there ideas to embrace wildlife in built environment planning?

0106Living With Carnivores2013071620130722

Monty Don presents Shared Planet, the series that looks at the crunch point between human population and the natural world. In this week's programme we report from India where John Aitchison revels in the sight of two tigers, who magnificent though they are, are now in effect in an island population, separated from the farmland that surrounds the National Park by an electric fence. Lion biologist Craig Packer from the University of Minnesota will be speaking to Monty about his observations in Tanzania where upward of 100 people a year are being killed by lions raiding villages, the lions allegedly being driven to switch their prey to people by lack of their preferred prey outside the national parks. David Macdonald, Professor of Wildlife Conservation at Oxford University, will be exploring this area of conflict with Monty in the Shared Planet studio.

Monty Don presents Shared Planet, the series that looks at the crunch point between human population and the natural world. In this week's programme we report from the Himalayas where Snow Leopards have been implicated in eating the goats of local people. Lion biologist Craig Packer from the University of Minnesota will be speaking to Monty about his observations in Tanzania where upward of 100 people a year are being killed by lions raiding villages, the lions allegedly being driven to switch their prey to people by lack of their preferred prey outside the national parks. David Macdonald, Professor of Wildlife Conservation at Oxford University, will be exploring this area of conflict with Monty in the Shared Planet studio.

0107Oil & Wildlife2013072320130729

Monty Don presents Shared Planet, the series that explores the crunch point between human population and the natural world. In this week's programme we have a report from the Arabian Gulf off the coast of Qatar where we witness oil rig legs encrusted with life, pods of dolphins and work monitoring the arrival of migrant whale sharks to the area. With the Deep Horizon incident in the Gulf of Mexico still fresh in many minds are oil rigs and ocean wildlife in conflict or can oil and wildlife share the same space. David Paterson, Executive Director of the Marine Alliance for Science and Technology for Scotland is in the Shared Planet studio to explore the issues.

0108 LASTWhat Is Sustainability?2013073020130805

Monty Don presents Shared Planet, the series that looks at the crunch point between human population and the natural world. In this week's programme we have a report from Gloucestershire on the waxing and waning of Eel populations. Jonathan Porritt, one of the founders of the sustainability charity Forum for the Future will be in the Shared Planet studio to explore the issues and the wider implication of sustainability.

0201Agricultural Crops And Wildlife2013090320130909

Monty Don presents Shared Planet, the series that looks at the crunch point between human population and the natural world. In this week's programme we have a field report from England with Simon Potts, Professor of Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services at Reading University. Simon Potts's research looks specifically at how effective bees and other pollinators are and their abundance in agricultural landscapes - a crucial link in food security. Monty Don explores some of the issues with Vandana Shiva in Delhi, a board member of the International Forum on Globalisation and an author of over 20 books about biodiversity, food and economies.

0202Rat Eradication - Is It Worth It?20130910

Monty Don presents Shared Planet, the series that looks at the crunch point between Human population and the natural world. In this week's programme we have a field report from South Georgia where Tony Martin, Professor in Zoology at Dundee University and working with the South Georgia Heritage Trust, has embarked on a programme to remove 100% of rats on South Georgia. Human activity over the decades and centuries have inadvertently introduced Brown Rats to islands and mainlands and the rats have driven local extinctions of birds and caused havoc on many seabird populations, eating the chicks in the nest. Is the wildlife benefit worth the effort it takes to return such areas to a situation before Brown Rats were introduced?

0203Wildlife Aliens And Diseases2013091720130923

Does human population increase mean more disease for wild and domestic animals and plants?

Does the increase in human population mean more diseases for domestic and wild animals and plants? As trade between different countries and continents increases we move more animals and plants around the world. With them go diseases that can be devastating for local wildlife. Ash die-back and the Varroa mite on bees are two recent examples that are causing real concern. Monty Don explores how our need for worldwide trade is carrying pests and diseases to places where there is no resistance.

The Varroa mite is an Asian species that has lived on the Asian variety of honey bee (Apis cerana) without causing too much damage to a colony. Where it has evolved it breeds only on male bees and, as they are not as numerous as females in a colony, it has little effect on the hive. Man moved colonies of the European honey bee (Apis mellifera) to Asia, and at some point in the last century the mite 'jumped species' onto the European honey bee. In European hives the mites can breed in the cells of worker bees. This alters the population dynamics of the mites and they multiply out of control so that - without human intervention - the colony will die. Varroa has now spread across the globe, reaching the UK in 1992. There are now very few wild colonies of honey bees left in the UK - they have been largely wiped out by the introduced Varroa mite and the viruses it transmits.

What can be done? Do we have a plan to stop this happening again and can we forsee what the next crisis will be?

0204Elephant Poaching In Africa2013092420130930

With the illegal trade in ivory on the up, what is the future for Africa's elephants?

Monty Don presents Shared Planet, the series that looks at the crunch point between human population and the natural world. In this programme a field report from Saba Douglas-Hamilton of Save the Elephants from the Samburu National Park in Kenya. Saba sees first-hand the sight of an elephant shot for its ivory. From Kenya, Monty Don explores some of the wider issues in Africa with David Western, Chairman of the Africa Conservation Centre in Kenya, ex Director of the Kenyan Wildlife Service and Adjunct Professor at University of California, San Diego. With many commentators and scientists saying the end markets for ivory are too large to supply from legally traded ivory, what argument will save elephants from the huge market incentive to kill elephants for their ivory?

0205Religion And Nature2013100120131007

Can the major religions of the world play a role in conserving the natural world?

The world human population is increasing and although in some parts of the world increased secularism is reported, nevertheless more people on earth are affiliated to a religion than not. Can the major religions of the world play a role in conserving the natural world? Monty Don explores how religious teachings might help people get more involved in conservation. In southern India the city of Bangalore is the third most populous city in India and one of the fastest growing. As the city expands to accommodate new migrants from the surrounding countryside the nearby national park - Bannerghatta - is under pressure. People now live in the buffer zone that was designed to separate people and wildlife. Elephants now regularly damage crops and farmland as their traditional sites are settled by people. The Christian based conservation organisation A Rocha has established a programme in Bannerghatta to both help the people who are losing their livelihood and the elephants who are being poisoned and persecuted. Can this example be replicated around the world where wildlife and people come into conflict? Professor Mary Evelyn Tucker and Bishop James Jones join Monty to explore how religion and conservation fit together.

0206Sharks2013100820131014

are one of the great icons of the oceans and yet are in severe decline.

Sharks are in decline across the world's oceans. It can be argued sharks have an image problem with reports of attacks on swimmers and surfers. Persecution and deliberate killing to clear areas near swimming beaches are only a contributor to shark decline. Legal fishing, by-catch, catching sharks for their fins are large contributors to shark decline. In this programme Monty Don talks to a wildlife cameraman who has filmed sharks for 20 years and recorded his observations of shark decline in his dive logs. In the Shared Planet studio we have Kelvin Boot and invited guests to talk about the ways in which the experts believe we can share the oceans with the large diverse group of fish. And a report from Fiji where a single living shark is allegedly worth $50,000 a year in dive tourist revenue.

are in decline across the world's oceans. It can be argued sharks have an image problem with reports of attacks on swimmers and surfers. Persecution and deliberate killing to clear areas near swimming beaches are only a contributor to shark decline. Legal fishing, by-catch, catching sharks for their fins are large contributors to shark decline. In this programme Monty Don talks to a wildlife cameraman who has filmed sharks for 20 years and recorded his observations of shark decline in his dive logs. In the Shared Planet studio we have Kelvin Boot and invited guests to talk about the ways in which the experts believe we can share the oceans with the large diverse group of fish. And a report from Fiji where a single living shark is allegedly worth $50,000 a year in dive tourist revenue.

0207Soil Science2013101520131021

Human population pressure on soils can impact on the earth worm, reducing soil fertility.

Shared Planet explores the link between a growing human population and wildlife and there is no other part of the natural world that is under as much pressure as the earth's soils. We rely on them to grow healthy crops, which they can only do if they support an appropriate community of bacterial, fungal and invertebrate life. Wildlife too depends on this diverse life that thrives in the soil, everything from birds to plants to insects. The earth worm is the surprising champion of soils and an animal that looks vulnerable in the face of human population pressure.

Producer Andrew Dawes.

0208Fragility And Niche2013102220131028

Monty Don explores the vulnerability of wildlife that need specialist conditions to live.

Some wildlife is fragile and will die out if it loses particular conditions. Some butterflies need a particular rare plant, or some birds certain trees for example. This week's field report comes from the heart of England where the needs of the Duke of Burgundy butterfly are revealed, our most endangered butterfly. In an increasingly crowded world is it possible to preserve fragile wildlife with so much demand on space. Monty Don explores whether it is possible for fragile wildlife to thrive in a world where the use of land changes from one generation to another, often linked to demand from an increasing global population.

Producer Andrew Dawes.

0209Restriction And Choice2013102920131104

Monty Don asks if people are prepared to forgo personal choice to protect wildlife.

In Australia some housing estates put restrictions on what people can do to protect koalas. They can't own dogs or cats for example and the Koala's needs are paramount. But how many people are prepared to give up lifestyle choices so that wildlife can thrive? Or are the needs and rights of people greater than those of species under threat? Monty Don explores whether people are prepared to forgo personal choice for wildlife in a world where human population is increasingly putting pressure on many species.

Producer Andrew Dawes.

0210Human Rubbish And Wildlife2013110520131111

More and more rubbish is put in landfill every year. Can rubbish tips and industrial sites be modified to help wildlife thrive in an increasingly crowded and consumerist world? The UK produces more than 100 million tonnes of rubbish annually, including 15 million tonnes of food. Much of this ends up in landfill; how can these sites be used to help wildlife? This week's field report comes from Essex, from a reclaimed landfill site which is now a wildlife haven. But is this a one-off or can it be replicated around the world? Monty Don explores the world of waste and wildlife in a world where human population is growing and consumerism increasing.

Producer Andrew Dawes.

As more rubbish is put in landfill and the human population grows, can this help wildlife?

0211Sequoia - Nowhere To Go2013111220131118

Climate change is causing some National parks in America to re-think their boundaries. As the earth warms many species try to move to cooler climates but national parks are rooted in one place. The Sequoia National Park in California runs mainly east-west but now plans are being formed to shift it to run north-south, allowing species that need cooler temperatures to thrive. But in an increasingly crowded world, and with climate change continuing to change the earth, can we protect our treasured areas? Monty Don explores how climate change, national parks, wildlife and people are sharing the earth.

0212Traditional Societies2013111920131125

The Ethiopian bush crow relies on local tribes for survival, but the tribes are changing.

Traditional societies and the wildlife that depends on them are disappearing. Can we preserve these fragile species? Or is the pressure to develop too great in our world? This week's field report comes from Ethiopia where one of the most endangered birds in the world, the Ethiopian Bush Crow, teeters on the verge of extinction as the traditional societies they rely upon disappear. This beautiful bird needs a particular regime of grazing and scrub to survive, but the societies that provide the right habitat are fast disappearing as development and modernisation takes over. Can we, should we, pour resources into protecting the crow when there is so much demand for money and space? Monty Don explores, with renowned writer Jared Diamond, the value of traditional societies and what we lose when they finally vanish.

and the wildlife that depends on them are disappearing. Can we preserve these fragile species? Or is the pressure to develop too great in our world? This week's field report comes from Ethiopia where one of the most endangered birds in the world, the Ethiopian Bush Crow, teeters on the verge of extinction as the traditional societies they rely upon disappear. This beautiful bird needs a particular regime of grazing and scrub to survive, but the societies that provide the right habitat are fast disappearing as development and modernisation takes over. Can we, should we, pour resources into protecting the crow when there is so much demand for money and space? Monty Don explores, with renowned writer Jared Diamond, the value of traditional societies and what we lose when they finally vanish.

0213Wildlife Conflict2013112620131202

Conflict between people and wildlife is increasing, what are the solutions?

As human population grows there is increasing conflict between people and nature. Competition for space and resources is intense in many areas and increasingly some species are regarded as pests when they raid crops, damage forestry or compete with us for game. Identified as one of the greatest challenges for conservation in the 21st Century, solutions are actively being sought. Whether it is living with big cats, birds of prey or reptiles, solutions will require conservationists to sit down with those who want to eradicate unwanted wildlife and be willing to accept compromise. Monty Don explores where the hotspots are, what is happening to broker solutions and what the future looks like in an increasingly crowded world.

0214Ocean Pollutants2013120320131209

Sea lions in California are developing cancer from ocean pollution. What can be done?

Sea lions in California are developing cancer and the most likely cause is pollution in the ocean. As world population grows and demands on agriculture increase, can we control the amount of damaging chemicals entering rivers and then being taken into the sea? Many of these agricultural and industrial chemicals are long lasting and highly toxic and, although officially banned, substances like DDT and PCBs are still in use in some areas. As pressure grows to control diseases in order to feed a growing world, solutions have to be found to stop these harmful chemicals damaging wildlife. Monty Don explores the problems of keeping our coastal waters free of toxins. Can we grow food and control disease while still protecting wildlife?

0215Eco-tourism2013121020131216

Humans in the form of scientific research or for artistic endeavour have for centuries travelled the world in search of new landscapes and places. It was not until the arrival of cheap air travel in the 1970's that far flung remote areas became accessible to anyone. Seeing and engaging with a wild landscape or animal has been shown to improve our desire to protect nature. But as the sheer numbers of people travelling to see wildlife spectacles increases, is it possible that the wildlife they have come to see may be changing their behaviour in response to this pressure. This week's field report comes a whale and dolphin watching trip in the Azores where tourist boats head off in search of a once in a lifetime wildlife spectacle.

Producer Andrew Dawes.

0216Noise In The Environment2013121720131223

Before the arrival of the Industrial Revolution in the 18th Century many believe the planet was largely a silent place. However what this overlooks is that the natural world is an incredibly noisy environment as species communicate between each other sometimes over vast distances. What has changed is that from around 1800 one species on the planet is arguably losing its ability to hear the presence of natural sound, and that species is Homo sapiens. Today the amount of anthropogenic noise 7 billion people produce across this planet is for many resulting in a disconnection with our natural neighbours and an inability to experience silence. If we can no longer hear the natural world, are we possibly becoming disconnected from everything around us? Monty Don explores this question through the difficulty of hearing natural sounds in the countryside without the interference of human noise.

Producer : Andrew Dawes.

0217Are There Too Many People For Wildlife To Thrive?2013122420131230

Monty Don presents a special edition recorded before a live audience at Bristol University

"Are there too many people on earth for wildlife to thrive?" This is the question we will be asking in a special edition of Shared Planet recorded with a live audience in the Great Hall of the University of Bristol. Together with questions asked by Shared Planet listeners and members of the public in the Great Hall, Monty hosts guests Fred Pearce, an environment writer and author of The Last Generation: How nature will take her revenge for climate change and Kierán Suckling, Executive Director of the Center for Biological Diversity. And of course Shared Planet correspondent Kelvin Boot will make an appearance.

Producer Mary Colwell.

0218Do We Care Too Much About Nature?2013123120140106

"Do we care too much about nature?" This is the question we will be asking in a special edition of Shared Planet recorded with a live audience in the Great Hall at the University of Bristol. Together with questions asked by Shared Planet listeners and members of the public in the audience Monty Don hosts two guests John Burton, Chief Executive Officer of The World Land Trust and Hannah Stoddart, Head of the Economic Justice and Policy team at Oxfam GB. And of course Shared Planet correspondent Kelvin Boot will make an appearance.

Producer Mary Cowell.

0219Deer Management2014010720140113

It is estimated that in the United Kingdom, that the number of certain deer species in our countryside has almost tripled in the last 20 years. Deer are possibly the most likely mammal we are ever likely to see in the wider countryside. However in many areas deer are blamed for destroying crops and woodland, and the booming populations will fuel concerns they are having a harmful impact on other wildlife. Add to this an increasing human population pushing ever deeper into deer habitat, are we at a point whereby the management of deer in Western Europe has become a critical issue? Monty Don explores this question a field report looking at the damage deer can do in our increasingly urbanised landscape.

Producer Andrew Dawes.

0220Community Protection2014011420140120

Worldwide, with an increasing human population using more and more natural resources, it is often local people and local communities who are the first to notice when something is out of balance in the natural world. In Britain it was otter hunt records that first led to the realisation that otter numbers were in steep decline in the late 1950's, a result of chemical leachate into watercourses from adjoining farmland. So how much influence can a local community have in protecting a species for the benefit of the wider community? In this programme Monty Don explores this question through a field report looking at the decline in Napoleon wrasse around the coral reefs of Palau after commercial fishing arrived from other parts of Micronesia in the 1980's. Local fishermen noticed the wrasse were disappearing and brought about their own initiatives to protect the species. This episode also explores the level of success these local initiatives can have in a wider context.

Producer Andrew Dawes.

0221The Medicinal Planet2014012120140127

In recent years some conventional medicines such as anti-biotics have become less effective in treating diseases and infections. With an increasing human population worldwide, the need to discover new medicines for the benefit of human health will potentially become a major issue in the coming years. Many commercially available medicines today can trace their origins to compounds found in the natural world, yet many of those natural compounds are found in rare species, often in natural environments that are now vulnerable due to human activity. Are we in danger of losing these potentially valuable resources before they are even discovered? Monty Don explores this question through a field report from the Elan Valley in mid Wales where a tree lungwort, ravished by pollution and climate change, could provide a potential cure for Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease in humans. Across the world, pharmaceutical companies have begun to revisit the natural world for compounds that may prove beneficial to the future of human health. How many compounds can be sourced from the natural world is impossible to know as until they are discovered and their benefit is unknown, but with increased pressure from human activities in natural areas, what can be done now to ensure the survival of the unknown for future generations?

Producer : Andrew Dawes.

0222 LASTOcean Governance2014012820140203

The earth is mostly covered by seawater, yet most of the world's oceans are ungoverned - they are the largest of commons in the world. In today's Shared Planet we ask who is responsible for the life in the ocean? Featuring a field report from Scotland, Monty Don explores the problems faced by life trying to compete with us for resources in an area with little or no regulation. The Isle of May is home to a quarter of a million seabirds in the breeding season, yet come the winter months most disperse out to the open sea to spend weeks at the mercy of storms and cold weather. The birds need a rich food supply to survive, yet the fish stocks and all other life in the sea is at the mercy of humanity. Suffering from what is known as "The Tragedy of the Commons", no one owns the oceans and therefore no one has responsibility for them, they are open to exploitation from many nations. Can the seabirds, whales, dolphins, turtles and all the other life that lives in the open ocean be protected? And if so by whom?

Producer Mary Colwell.

0301Disclosure2014060320140609

Monty Don explores the difficulties in keeping secrets and the effects of secrecy on rare orchids and rhinos. For the lady's slipper orchid in England, reduced to a single plant, secrecy was considered the only solution for many years, but when collectors discovered its site, conservation strategy changed. Rhinos, like other creatures with a price on their heads are very vulnerable and even in the 21st century; secrecy still plays a part in their conservation.

0302Nature And The Written Word2014061020140616

Monty Don presents a special Shared Planet in front of an audience from the Hay Festival. Nature has always inspired writers across the generations and cultures. The natural world has been the subject, generated the characters and been there as the canvas on which the rest of the story is written. In this special edition of Shared Planet Monty Don explores the presence of the natural world in fiction and factual writing, past and present and whether any landmarks in human history change the way in which we write about the natural world around us.

0303The Modern Naturalist2014061720140623

Monty Don presents the second of two special programmes recorded at the Hay Festival.

Monty Don presents a special Shared Planet in front of an audience from the Hay Festival. Naturalists have always relied on and contributed to the illustrated guide book to observe and record wildlife, but is this so today? The modern naturalist has more than just books at their disposal, with field guides on mobile phones and tablet computers giving more than just words; sounds and moving pictures too. Monty Don asks whether the traditional naturalist skills are disappearing and with them the naturalist, or whether technology in an increasingly crowded world are liberating naturalists to observe and record wildlife in a different way generating a new generation of naturalists fit for the planet they share with nature.

0304Spix Macaw - Conservation Triage2014062420140630

Is it worth saving the spix macaw, or could more be done with the same resources?

How does the world of conservation set its priorities? Shared Planet reports from Qatar and the effort being spent to save the Spix Macaw from extinction in captivity. Occasionally, when the battle to save a species from extinction has almost been lost, the only alternative is to catch the remaining individuals to be kept safe and bred in captivity with no certainly of ever being returned to the wild. In this episode of Shared Planet Monty Don asks whether last hope fights to prevent single extinctions are viable or do we need to start prioritising conservation funding to secure the future or greater numbers of species?

0305Hector's Dolphin2014070120140707

Hector's dolphin is the world smallest marine cetacean and one of the most endangered. It's a shallow water specialist endemic to New Zealand that shares its space with commercial and recreational fishing. In this episode of Shared Planet Monty Don finds out why Hector's dolphin is so vulnerable and what's being done to protect it.

0305Overland Migration20140701

Overland migrations of terrestrial mammals form some of the most impressive natural spectacles in the world. But humans have been making it more and more difficult for animals to move long distances overland. Roads and railways cause mortalities, fences block the way, growing towns and cities disrupt routes. Monty Don hears from projects in the USA designed to help the pronghorn antelope continue on its lengthy migration and how a road planned for the Serengeti might affect the wildebeest migration.

0306Overland Migration2014070820140714

Overland migrations of terrestrial mammals form some of the most impressive natural spectacles in the world. But humans have been making it more and more difficult for animals to move long distances overland. Roads and railways cause mortalities, fences block the way, growing towns and cities disrupt routes. Monty Don hears from projects in the USA designed to help the pronghorn antelope continue on its lengthy migration and how a road planned for the Serengeti might affect the wildebeest migration.

0307Urban Wildlife2014071520140721

Wildlife in urban areas can be surprisingly diverse - particularly when neighbouring more natural areas. Can the urban jungle actually be better than some rural areas for bees and birds? In this episode Monty Don hears from scientists working to find out just how important our urban areas are for wildlife.

Presented by Monty Don and produced by Brett Westwood.

0308Zoos In The Wild2014072220140728

Monty Don asks if reserves fenced off for the benefit of wildlife are effective.

As more land is developed for industry and housing or converted to produce food the areas we have fenced off for nature are increasingly important. But are the worlds nature reserves essentially made into a fortress to protect the area from development able to function on their own, or do they need constant management. Are they "zoos in the wild". Monty Don hears from Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park in South Africa, the reserve that helped replenish Southern Africa's white rhinoceros population and finds out whether size really does matter for our protected areas.

0309National Parks2014072920140804

The term National Park can be applied to different types of areas depending on where they are situated, some have more protection for wildlife than others. In the United States the traditional National Parks such as Yellowstone or Yosemite enjoy a high level of protection with many restrictions on what people can do. Contrast that with British National Parks which are working landscapes with villages, farms and even industry.

In this week's Shared Planet Monty Don looks at where wildlife fits into this complex mix of wilderness and human activity. In reality how do these much-loved protected areas work for wildlife? Beautiful scenery does not necessarily equal abundant wildlife. And in more human centred National parks, do our needs override those of animals and plants. In the Cairngorms National park plans are underway to build 15000 houses and Loch Lomond has given the go ahead for a gold mine. Join Monty Don to explore the relationship between wildlife and National Parks.

Produced by Mary Colwell.

Monty Don finds out if national parks are good for wildlife.