Tony Soper

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Tony Soper (born 10 January 1929) is a British naturalist, author and broadcaster.

Life and career[edit]

Soper was educated at Hyde Park Elementary School and at Devonport High School for Boys, both in Plymouth. He joined the BBC at 17 as a "youth-in-training", subsequently graduating by way of studio manager to features producer in radio, then moved into television.

Soper co-founded the BBC's Natural History Unit as its first film producer, supported by Patrick Beech the then South West Controller. Cutting his teeth on the LOOK series he organised far-flung wildlife filming projects. He presented live television programmes, including Birdwatch, Birdspot, Discovering Birds, Discovering Animals, Beside the Sea, Wildtrack, and Nature. Soper also co-presented Animal Magic with Johnny Morris for a few years in the 1960s. For many years he also had a regular column in the RSPB members' magazine.

As Expedition Leader and a pioneer of wildlife cruising, he has spent the last twenty years exploring both polar regions. He holds a British Yachtmaster's licence and is a qualified compressed air, oxygen, hard hat diver.

Soper's wife Hilary is a wildlife painter, and they have two sons.


A single 23-minute episode of Wildtrack is available as a bonus feature on the DVD and Blu-ray release of David Attenborough's 1979 series Life on Earth.



  • The Bird Table Book (1965, several editions to 2006)
  • Wildlife Begins at Home (1975)
  • Everyday Birds (1976)
  • Discovering Birds (1983)
  • Penguins [with John Sparks] (1987)
  • A Passion For Birds (1988)
  • Owls [with John Sparks] (1995)
  • Wildlife of the North Atlantic (2008)
  • The Arctic: A Guide to Coastal Wildlife (2012)
  • The Northwest Passage (2012)
  • Antarctica: A Guide to the Wildlife (2013)[1]


  1. ^ Chalfont St Peter: Bradt Travel Guides. ISBN 9781841624839

External links[edit]