The BBC's "Life in the Undergrowth", presented by the seemingly indefatigable David Attenborough, takes us down into the diminutive world of the invertebrates. There are a lot of them - they outnumber us two hundred million to one - but, apart from spotting the occasional wasp, bee, fly or spider, we rarely pay them any attention.
The television series takes us down to their scale, using the latest in technology to get astonishing close ups of the insect world. And the images are truly astonishing. The tiniest creatures are revealed in their everyday struggle for survival. You are left with total admiration for their problem solving skills - they have each evolved to find a niche which they can exploit and in which they can thrive. There are spiders with ingenious means of capturing their prey … and there's a millipede which climbs inside caves and hunts bats! They live lonely lives, they live in vast societies. They climb high, they delve low. Some fly, some tunnel. There is such variety, each episode holds you rapt.
And my favourites? I am not happy with spiders - now there's an admission - but they fascinate me. So do ants, and the presentation of the ultimate society at work is utterly absorbing. But, my absolute favourite is the mating of the leopard slugs, incredibly beautiful, incredibly tender, incredibly erotic - and I am not planning to see a therapist.
The series explores the many worlds of the invertebrates and also offers invaluable insight into the way the films were made. It's an instructive set of DVD's which should inspire you not only to look more closely at the teeming life which surrounds you, unnoticed, but which may also stimulate your interest in photography and science. A series you can watch again and again, and, if you are hooked, I advocate that you look at the buglife.org website for further information on the subject.