The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge today released a video showing Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis questioning Sir David Attenborough. The royal children met the famed naturalist last week, when Prince William watched a private screening of Attenborough’s new documentary.
George asked the wildlife expert about extinct animals: “What animal do you think will become extinct next?”
“Well, let’s hope there won’t be any,” said Sir David. “There are lots of things we can do when animals are in danger of extinction. We can protect them.”
Sir David spoke of mountain gorilla of central Africa, which were “very, very rare” 40 years ago. However, the group has grown from 250 to over than 1,000, thanks to public awareness and global fund-raising.
“So you can save an animal if you want to and you put your mind to it,” he told the seven-year-old Prince.
“People around the world are doing that because animals are so precious, ” he added. “So let’s hope there won’t be any more that go extinct.”
Attenborough presented George, seven, with a tooth from an extinct giant shark, which lived 23 million years ago during their meeting last week; it was found on a family holiday to Malta in the late 1960s.
Princess Charlotte, meanwhile, revealed her interest in spiders with her question! “I like spiders, do you like spiders too?” she asked, appearing to be wearing her school uniform.
“I love spiders. I am so glad you like them!” said Sir David. “I think they’re wonderful things.”
“Why is it that people are so frightened of them? I think it’s because they have actually got eight legs, which are much more than us. And if you’ve got eight legs you can move in any direction – so you can never be quite sure which way that spider is going to go!
“But spiders are so clever. Have you ever watched one try to build its web? That is extraordinary. How does it make this circular web like that… how do they do it? Try and watch and see how they do it – it’s marvellous.”
Louis’ question rounded off the short video, which was the first time he has been heard speaking in public. “What animal do you like?” he quizzed, stumbling over the word ‘animal a touch; the Prince is two and a half.
“I like monkeys best because they are such fun,” Sir David replied. “Mind you, you can’t have monkeys sitting around the home because that’s not where they live,” he cautioned.
“So what can you have at home that you like? Well, which would you choose – a puppy or a kitten?” He paused. “It’s a very difficult question. I think I’d go for a puppy.”
The young Royals have join a roster of celebrities, including David Beckham, Billie Eilish and Dame Judi Dench, who have been asking Sir David for his opinions on all things natural, to coincide with the launch of his film ‘David Attenborough: A Life on This Planet’.
The Cambridge children are known to be big fans of Sir David’s. In September 2019, when the Duke and Duchess had an engagement with Attenborough to name a research ship after him, Catherine admitted her children were ‘very upset’ they couldn’t join them.