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11 Reviews
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Thanks Iolo!
Birds have been on my `to do' list for a long while but the subject has been a bit daunting: other people always know so much, and have better binoculars and steadier hands. Having just watched The Secret Life of Birds I now feel equipped to give the subject a go and delve further.

For me there were plenty of secrets, some more spectacular than others, such as...
Published on 10 April 2012 by Farkins

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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good and very informative Series
Found this quite interesting as it tells you basic information about common British birds you don't find on other wildlife documentaries.
Published 5 months ago by Matt Woodward


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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Thanks Iolo!, 10 April 2012
This review is from: Secret Life of Birds [DVD] (DVD)
Birds have been on my `to do' list for a long while but the subject has been a bit daunting: other people always know so much, and have better binoculars and steadier hands. Having just watched The Secret Life of Birds I now feel equipped to give the subject a go and delve further.

For me there were plenty of secrets, some more spectacular than others, such as the aerial passing of freshly caught prey between a pair of hen harriers, or a treecreeper hollowing out a cosy sleeping hole in the bark of a giant redwood. More harrowing though was the story of the pigeons: diligently building their nest in Cardiff, taking turns to sit on eggs for three weeks, despite the rain, then four days of feeding until the sparrowhawk arrived - cruel curtains for the chicks as the helpless parents watched on.

I now know how to recognise, and where to find, many more types of birds but I suspect some enthusiasts will feel short-changed by the exclusion of certain species - did I blink and miss the osprey? That apart, I think it makes a fantastic introduction, or a great reminder, of the rich variety of our bird life across Wales, and aspects of behaviour most of us miss - both an inspiration and a snapshot in time.

Huw Jenkins, guest editor of Natur Cymru
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A hidden gem of a series, 4 Mar 2014
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This review is from: Secret Life of Birds [DVD] (DVD)
This is a beautifully filmed and quite charming series, in which the ever-affable Iolo Williams visits various locations in Wales, showcasing the remarkable birdlife of this rugged and picturesque land.

The filming and production is of the high quality one would expect from the BBC, and there are some quite breathtaking sequences: Starlings gathering in their thousands to roost, glossy Black Grouse strutting their stuff at the lek, and, best of all, a stunning male Hen Harrier performing a dramatic aerial display fight, including a food-pass to the female. But this series doesn't simply target the more glamorous species, and I really liked the fact that, alongside the crowd-pleasers, it also focuses on more ordinary, everyday birds.

As personable and as passionate as Chris Packham, Iolo could scarcely be a better qualified guide on this voyage of discovery through Wales. And while Iolo rightly seems proud of his country and its amazing wildlife, he never displays the kind of puffed-up nationalistic fervour that, as an English former resident of Wales, I have encountered all too often, and which can be quite off-putting.

My only gripe - and it is a tiny one - is that the five half-hour episodes are spread out over three discs, and it would be nice to have them all on one.

In addition to this, there is surely something of a mismatch between the title of this series and the fact that it ONLY focuses on Wales. The rather parochial feel to the whole thing is perhaps understandable given that these programmes appear only to have been broadcast in Wales. However, for a general DVD release called 'The Secret Life of Birds', I have to say that it does feel a little odd at times. The majority of the species featured are not exclusive to Wales, nor even especially associated with it, though it sometimes felt as if the country exists in isolation from the rest of Britain, e.g. Fulmars being described as 'kind of a Welsh version of an albatross' (why not a British version, seeing as they occur all around the UK coast?).

In short, this is a beautiful portrait of the wonderful birdlife of Wales, and as such it is highly recommended - particularly as an accompaniment to the brilliant DVD `Wild Wales', which is also presented by Iolo.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A film as a film should be, 8 Nov 2012
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This review is from: Secret Life of Birds [DVD] (DVD)
I enjoyed this film tremendously and I am going to watch it many more timesSecret Life of Birds [DVD]. It is so beautiful! Every shot is a pretty picture, the information is interesting and the man guiding the viewer does a great job. Never too long in the picture, always good information, he adds to the film. Did they make more films?
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Cymru am byth, 8 Mar 2013
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This review is from: Secret Life of Birds [DVD] (DVD)
A six-part series spread over three discs, running about 2 hours. Filmed in the best BBC house style; Iolo Williams is an excellent guide who communicates his love for birds (and his native country) in an easy-going and informative manner. Be aware though, that this DVD only covers bird-life in Wales, not the whole of the UK: maybe the title of the series should have reflected this. That said though, for those of us who just like to sit back and watch a well-photographed natural history programme about anywhere on our island, this is just the ticket. In answer to the comment on peterb0's post, there are no sub-titles on these discs.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good review of birdlife in Wales, 21 May 2012
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Mr. Richard Comrie (Durham England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Secret Life of Birds [DVD] (DVD)
This is a good review of birds and birdwatching in Wales. It focusses on the main species that you are likely to find in Wales and where to see them.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars secret life of birds, 8 May 2012
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a great 3 part set dvd's . good narration and excellent photography. well done to IoIo for making it very entertaining
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommended, 7 April 2013
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Superb details and work presented in the series. I enjoyed watching it and it was very educative for bird watching.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 21 July 2014
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F. W. Hamilton (Belfast Northern Ireland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Secret Life of Birds [DVD] (DVD)
Excellent product & service
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good and very informative Series, 9 Feb 2014
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This review is from: Secret Life of Birds [DVD] (DVD)
Found this quite interesting as it tells you basic information about common British birds you don't find on other wildlife documentaries.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly entertaining, 27 Dec 2013
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This review is from: Secret Life of Birds [DVD] (DVD)
Christmas present for a bird lover, came across this while searching for the famous one! Great camera work and interesting to watch.
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