BBC picks expert for Burma show

By Connie Osborne Friday 29 November 2013 Updated: 29/11 10:34

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Buy photos » Dr Ross Piper is one of a handful of people who explored Burma’s wildlife for a new documentary. Picture by BBC.

A TARDEBIGGE wildlife expert will be appearing on the small screen as a presenter for a new BBC Two documentary.

Dr Ross Piper was one of just a handful of scientists and filmmakers who were selected to explore Burma for the first time in 50 years as part of a three part documentary.

The 37-year-old, who grew up in the village before going on to study zoology and animal ecology at Bangor University, spent six weeks undertaking expeditions across the country.

They included a trek into the mountains of West Burma in search of the one of the country's most endangered animals, the Asian elephant, as well as uncovering forest insects and the Asian golden cat.

The former St Augustine's Catholic High School pupil, who has also had a number of books published, said the trip was one of the best moments in his life and hoped the episodes provided evidence of how important Burma's forests were for the rest of the world.

"It was utterly amazing, I was living the dream. To be one of the first out there is just an unbelievable feeling, we really got to venture into the undiscovered. It was like being a kid in a sweet shop."

He added although the journey was difficult at times - including getting bitten by a tarantula- he hoped the hard work of the team showed the importance of preserving endangered species.

"Our aim was to hopefully influence the Myanmar government into protecting the vast wildlife.

"If people start to visit these beautiful areas maybe they would be more inclined to safeguard them.

"There are still issues with development and Asia's wildlife trade and I just hope this could help change that."

Visit www.rosspiper.net for more information.

Wild Burma: Nature's Lost Kingdom begins tonight (Friday) with the first episode airing at 9pm on BBC Two.

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