PBS’s Nature strand is celebrating its 40th year of global leadership in Wildlife programming.
A highlight episode for the anniversary year is SEASON OF THE OSPREY (October 27).
I’m honored to have co-xecutive produced OSPREY for director Jacob Steinberg and the co-production partners Love Nature and The WNET Group.
The project is loaded with personal meaning:
- 40 years ago was also a very big year for me: That’s when I arrived in New York from Melbourne.
- After months of struggle, I landed my my first real job in the U.S.: It was for WNET, New York’s public TV station.
- Years later I left CBS International to set up my own strategic consulting practice. Who was my first client? WNET!
I have always loved both birds and wildlife programs, and was immediately blown away when several years ago, Jacob shared his intimate footage of this magnificent raptor.
I signed on as EP, and here we are, just weeks from premiere on PBS’s distinguished Nature platform.
- WNET’s 40th anniversary season press release follows below. It lists the exciting new episodes for 2021-22.
- Here is the link to the trailer for WNET’s new season.
- And Love Nature‘s press release announcing the production.
Watch out for my upcoming series of podcasts and posts. I’ll cover both the making of SEASON OF THE OSPREY and the science of the Osprey, including the inspiring story of how the beloved species was rescued from extinction.
(Photo credit: Michael Fleisch)
(NEW YORK – August 10, 2021)
The WNET Group’s Emmy- and Peabody Award-winning series Nature celebrates its 40th anniversary with new episodes Wednesdays at 8 p.m. beginning October 20 on PBS (check local listings), pbs.org/nature and the PBS Video app.
Season 40 premieres with My Garden of a Thousand Bees, which follows wildlife cameraman Martin Dohrn, who filmed all the bees he could find in his tiny urban garden in Bristol, England, during the COVID-19 lockdown. By the end of the summer, Dohrn saw more than 60 species of bees and unlocked new knowledge about the diversity of personalities in this insect family.
From the wild Rocky Mountains to the Pony Express Trail, witness some of North America’s most iconic wildlife in their natural habitat, including grizzly bears, bison, wild mustangs, Appaloosas, ospreys, bighorn sheep and many more. Using the latest filmmaking technology, Nature reveals new information about beloved animal favorites, such as elephants, penguins and wild horses, and the threats they face. Animals with Cameras returns for a second installment, featuring animals outfitted with lightweight, specially designed cameras that provide a glimpse into the inner lives of turtles, bats, koalas, sharks, kangaroos and more.
“Throughout its storied history, Nature has inspired millions of people to discover the wonder and beauty of our natural world,” said Paula Kerger, president and chief executive officer for PBS. “As issues of conservation and climate change become increasingly important, this iconic series will continue to educate and enlighten audiences through best-in-class documentary films.”
“It’s been an honor to be with Nature for four decades now,” said Fred Kaufman, executive producer for Nature. “From the beginning, our mission has been to be a voice for the natural world, and we will continue to be that voice for years to come.”
New Nature Season 40 documentaries include:
Nature: My Garden of a Thousand Bees (Season 40 premiere)
Premieres Wednesday, October 20 at 8 p.m. on PBS
A story of surprise and revelation. A veteran wildlife cameraman is bee-obsessed. Seeking refuge from the pandemic in a small city garden, he is filming the wild bees that live there with mind-blowing results. From giant bumblebees to scissor bees the size of a mosquito, he has seen more than 60 species of bee. But more importantly, he is developing a close relationship with an individual bee he follows through its entire life.
Nature: Season of the Osprey
Premieres Wednesday, October 27 at 8 p.m. on PBS
A veteran pair of ospreys return home to a Connecticut saltmarsh. Over one summer they must battle their enemies, withstand the elements, and hunt hundreds of fish, all to raise the next generation of these consummate sea hawks.
Nature: The Elephant and the Termite
Premieres Wednesday, November 3 at 8 p.m. on PBS
Witness the creation of one of Africa’s greatest wildlife meeting places and the site of extraordinary drama: the waterhole. From mighty elephants to tiny termites, an entire community of creatures call the waterhole their home.
Nature: Born in the Rockies (two-part special)
Premieres Wednesdays, November 10 & 17 at 8 p.m. on PBS
Journey deep into the wild heart of North America’s Rocky Mountains and experience this rugged land through the eyes of its iconic wildlife. Follow the drama as newborns make their way in one of the world’s most challenging and spectacular habitats on Earth.
Nature: Animals with Cameras (two-part special)
Premieres Winter/Spring 2022
Animals become wildlife cinematographers when they are fitted with lightweight, specially designed cameras in this two-part series that feature turtles, sharks, koalas, bats, kangaroos and more. Our animal “camera specialists” reveal behavior new to scientists.
Nature – Penguins: Meet the Family
Premieres Winter/Spring 2022
A celebration of one of Earth’s most iconic and beloved birds, featuring footage of all 17 species of penguins for the first time, from New Zealand, Cape Town, the Galapagos Islands and Antarctica.
Nature: The Ocean’s Greatest Feast
Premieres Winter/Spring 2022
New filming technology brings the story of South Africa’s annual sardine run vividly to life like never before. Between May and July each year, the sardine run sees billions of sardines spawning and travelling up the coast, providing a feast for an array of marine predators.
Nature: American Horses
Premieres Winter/Spring 2022
Following the popularity of Equus: Story of the Horse, Nature turns its cameras to the uniquely American horse breeds that helped shape our nation, such as the Mustang, Appaloosa, Morgan and Quarter Horse.
Nature: Running with the Beest
Premieres Winter/Spring 2022
It is one of nature’s most spectacular events – the million strong wildebeest migration across the heart of East Africa culminating in the dramatic moment they must cross the Mara River. See how this iconic wildlife event is a major moment in the life cycle for every predator, prey and scavenger involved.
Led by executive producer Fred Kaufman, Nature pioneered a television genre that is now widely emulated in the broadcast industry, bringing the natural world to millions of viewers. Consistently among the most-watched primetime series on PBS, Nature continues to innovate through original digital programming and a commitment to converting viewers into doers.
The series has won more than 700 honors from the television industry, the international wildlife film communities and environmental organizations, including 19 Emmys and three Peabodys. Nature received two of the wildlife film industry’s highest honors: the Christopher Parsons Outstanding Achievement Award given by the Wildscreen Festival, and the Grand Teton Award given by the Jackson Hole Wildlife Film Festival. The International Wildlife Film Festival honored Kaufman with its Lifetime Achievement Award for Media.
Nature’s award-winning website, pbs.org/nature, features full episodes, short films, digital series, behind-the-scenes content, news articles, educational resources and more. A new podcast, Going Wild with Dr. Rae Wynn-Grant, will also launch this fall. The series is available for streaming concurrent with broadcast on all station-branded PBS platforms, including PBS.org and the PBS Video App, available on iOS, Android, Roku streaming devices, Apple TV, Android TV, Amazon Fire TV, Samsung Smart TV, Chromecast and VIZIO. PBS station members can view many series, documentaries and specials via PBS Passport. For more information about PBS Passport, visit the PBS Passport FAQ website.
Nature is a production of The WNET Group for PBS. Fred Kaufman is Executive Producer. Bill Murphy is Series Producer. Janet Hess is Series Editor. Danielle Broza is Digital Content & Strategy Lead.
Support for Nature is made possible in part by the Arnhold Foundation, The Fairweather Foundation, Kate W. Cassidy Foundation, Sue and Edgar Wachenheim III, Kathy Chiao and Ken Hao, Charles Rosenblum, Filomen M. D’Agostino Foundation, Lillian Goldman Charitable Trust, Klorfine Foundation, Sandra Atlas Bass, Colin S. Edwards, Gregg Peters Monsees Foundation, Koo and Patricia Yuen, by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and by public television viewers.
About The WNET Group
The WNET Group creates inspiring media content and meaningful experiences for diverse audiences nationwide. It is the community-supported home of New York’s THIRTEEN – America’s flagship PBS station – WLIW21, THIRTEEN PBSKids, WLIW World and Create; NJ PBS, New Jersey’s statewide public television network; Long Island’s only NPR station WLIW-FM; ALL ARTS, the arts and culture media provider; and newsroom NJ Spotlight News. Through these channels and streaming platforms, The WNET Group brings arts, culture, education, news, documentary, entertainment and DIY programming to more than five million viewers each month. The WNET Group’s award-winning productions include signature PBS series Nature, Great Performances, American Masters, PBS NewsHour Weekend and Amanpour and Company and trusted local news programs MetroFocus and NJ Spotlight Newswith Briana Vannozzi. Inspiring curiosity and nurturing dreams, The WNET Group’s award-winning Kids’ Media and Education team produces the PBS KIDS series Cyberchase, interactive Mission US history games, and resources for families, teachers and caregivers. A leading nonprofit public media producer for nearly 60 years, The WNET Group presents and distributes content that fosters lifelong learning, including multiplatform initiatives addressing poverty, jobs, economic opportunity, social justice, understanding and the environment. Through Passport, station members can stream new and archival programming anytime, anywhere. The WNET Group represents the best in public media. Join us.
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