Trees A Crowd


Mark Carwardine: "Don’t ever french-kiss a Narwhal”... and other words of wisdom

Season 2, Ep. 1

Mark Carwardine is a zoologist, leading conservationist, broadcaster and photographer. He came to prominence through his book and BBC documentary series “Last Chance to See” which he created with Douglas Adams of “The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy” fame. One of Mark’s big passions is diving - he organises whale and dolphin trips in Baja California, Mexico. In this fascinating conversation dusted with the sounds of nearby Canada geese, coots and black-headed gulls, Mark describes his most moving experience, snorkeling with humpback whales, and admiring their five meter long flippers. He talks about his childhood, rescuing animals wherever he found them, and about creating his own mini zoo. He reminisces about an unforgettable moment from his youth; cramming his idols David Attenborough, David Bellamy, David Shepherd and Peter Scott into his old Hillman Imp, which catastrophically broke down on the way to the train station. From the green woodpecker that sits on his office window sill every day, to the narwhals in the high arctic that you absolutely ‘shouldn’t french kiss’, Mark describes the endless joy that nature brings him. For more information on this podcast, including David's thoughts following this interview, head to:

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Dr William C. Tweed: The secret histories of John Muir’s Giant Redwoods

Season 2, Ep. 18
Dr William C. Tweed is a lover of Big Trees - the Giant Redwoods of California to be precise. An historian and naturalist, he has a career spanning over 30 years working for the US national park service, and after holding several roles at the Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, spent a decade as its Chief Naturalist. Whether it’s describing what a Giant Redwood is through a comparison to the miniscule mosquito, or a deep dive into numerous secret histories of mankind's fascinations with these trees, William will have you captivated, falling in love with, and longing to hug, the giant sequoia. In exploring the tree’s many wonderful evolutionary features, and the serene images he paints of the Sierra Nevada, William explains that our passion for sequoias starts with our love of that which is “big, and old, and rare”, and then continues to grow tall. William explores the history of the “Father of the National Parks” himself, John Muir - how his religious upbringing inspired his writing (his works serving as a “secular Bible” for those devoted to nature) - and how the Sierra Club is still following firmly in Muir’s footsteps today. Among William’s teachings are plenty of digressions and distractions - charming moments of a mind as fascinated by nature today as he has ever been.For further information on this and other episodes, visit: