Steve Backshall Biography

(British Naturalist, Explorer and Presenter Known for His Wildlife Documentary Program ‘Deadly 60’)

Birthday: April 21, 1973 (Taurus)

Born In: Bagshot, Surrey, England, United Kingdom

Steve Backshall is an English naturalist, explorer, author, public speaker and television presenter best known for his BBC wildlife television series, Deadly 60. The show bagged him a BAFTA for best Children's Television Presenter in 2011 and inspired numerous spin-off series. Passionate about exploring hidden places and discovering newer animal species from around the world, he has frequently been part of expedition teams in shows like Expedition with Steve BackshallLost Land of the TigerLost Land of the Volcano and Lost Land of the Jaguar. He has also taken a series of dangerous challenges in shows like Personal Expedition: Mount Asgard, Extreme Mountain Challenge and Down the Mighty River with Steve Backshall. Earlier, Backshall began his career writing for Rough Guides and then joined National Geographic Channel as Adventurer in Residence. He worked there for five years before moving to BBC where he began presenting the children wildlife show, The Really Wild Show. Also an author, he has written numerous nonfiction books and a fiction series, The Falcon Chronicles. In 2020, he was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) for his wildlife and conservation work. He credits his parents for instilling in him a love for nature and wildlife.

Quick Facts

British Celebrities Born In April

Also Known As: Stephen James Backshall

Age: 51 Years, 51 Year Old Males


Spouse/Ex-: Helen Glover (m. 2016)

children: Logan James David Backshall

Born Country: England

Naturalists TV Presenters

Height: 6'0" (183 cm), 6'0" Males

City: Surrey, England

More Facts

education: University Of Exeter

Childhood & Early Life

Stephen James Backshall was born on 21st April 1973, in Surrey, and grew up in a smallholding in Bagshot village surrounded by different types of wild and domestic animals who he counted as his best friends.

His parents, both employed with British Airways, were outdoor and nature enthusiasts and hugely responsible for instilling in him a love for wildlife and conservation from a very young age.

For his education, he went to Collingwood College in Camberley and Brooklands College, Surrey. Thereafter, he set out all by himself to explore India and Africa.

Upon return, he enrolled himself in the University of Exeter and pursued English and theatre studies. This was followed by a year of martial arts training in Japan.

In 2020, he completed his MSc in Bioscience from Canterbury Christ Church University.

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Steve Backshall began his career as an author with British Travel Guide book and reference publisher Rough Guides. He wrote the guides for Indonesia and South East Asia.

In the year 1997, after an unsuccessful attempt to walk solo across the western half of New Guinea, he had an idea for a television series. He stayed in the Colombian jungles and filmed a video there which was liked and bought by National Geographic Channel. He was employed by the channel as Adventurer in Residence in 1998.

Between 1998 and 2003, he produced, filmed and presented adventure and natural history programmes for the channel. These programmes included Earthpulse, The Toughest Race, SOS: Save Our Seas, Dive the World, Adventure Diaries India and A Walk in the Desert.

In 2003, he left National Geographic to join BBC TV where he began presenting the children wildlife show, The Really Wild Show, for CBBC. The show, for which he travelled to Australia's east coast, Central America and Southern Africa, continued up till 2006. Thereafter, he became a part of BBC Natural History Unit's expedition team.

Between 2006 and 2008, he worked on BBC shows like Expedition Borneo, Springwatch Trackers, Lost Land of the Jaguar, Ultimate Caving and Secret Wilderness Japan.

He also filmed, Inside the King Cobra, for Sky One channel in 2006 and Venom Hunter for Discovery TV in 2008.

In between, in 2007, his book, Venom: Poisonous Creatures in the Natural World, came out which elaborated on world’s most venomous creatures and Steve’s own encounter with them.

In 2009, the wildlife documentary programme – Deadly 60 – designed majorly for children and young people started airing and saw Steve Backshall and his crew travelling the world to find the sixty most dangerous animals in the world.

The show continued for three seasons (2009, 2010 and 2012) and inspired a number of spin-offs series.

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Presented by Backshall, these shows included a live magazine program Live 'n Deadly (2010-2011); a studio-based format show Deadly 360 (2011) as well as travel adventure shows Deadly Pole to Pole (2013), Deadly on a Mission: Pole to Pole (2014) and Backshall's Deadly Adventures (2015). There were short filler programme too including Deadly 60 Bites and Deadly Art.

Diary style books detailing how each animal was found and filmed were released for series one and three too.

He presented three-part nature documentary series, Lost Land of the Volcano, in 2009 and Lost Land of the Tiger, in 2010. Along with other scientists and explores, he travelled to the extinct volcano of Mount Bosavi, in Papua New Guinea in the former and to Bhutan with the hope of filming endangered tigers at record elevations in the latter.

More wildlife books authored by Steve Backshall came out during this period. These included Wildlife Adventurer's Guide (2009), Looking for Adventure (2011) and Predators (2011).

As an author, he also ventured into the fiction genre and published the first book – Tiger Wars – of his Falcon series in 2012. The subsequent years saw the release of three more books of the series – Ghosts of the Forest in 2013, The Wilds of the Wolf in 2014 and Shark Seas in 2016.

In 2014, he participated in the British dance reality show, Strictly Come Dancing, together with Ola Jordan. The two finished eighth in the show.

In 2015, he co-presented a BAFTA award winning live series, Big Blue Live, and the following year presented a television miniseries documentary Steve Backshall's Extreme Mountain Challenge and another documentary Fierce.

The year 2017 saw him presenting a television miniseries documentary Down the Mighty River with Steve Backshall, Japan's Northern Wilderness and Wild Alaska Live as well as a documentary special Meet the Hedgehogs.

In 2018, he presented another documentary, Steve Backshall Vs The Monster Mountain and another spinoff show of the famous Deadly series – Deadly Dinosaurs.

In 2019, he presented television miniseries documentaries Blue Planet Live and Blue Planet Now. The year also saw him hosting Expeditions wherein, along with his team, he set out on ten adventurous expeditions around the world taking up activities like rafting, trekking and mountain climbing. A book – Expedition: Adventures Into Undiscovered Worlds - about these experiences has also been published.

In 2020, the fourth series of Deadly 60 began airing on CBBC.

More nonfiction books authored by him continued to engage the readers including Deadly Detectives: Top Tips To Track Wildlife (2013) and Mountain: A Life On The Rocks (2015).

Awards & Achievements

In his career till now, Steve Backshall has been awards numerous times. These include a BAFTA for Best Children's Television Presenter in 2011 for Deadly 60.

In 2020, for his charity and wildlife conservation work, he was named Member of the Order of the British Empire. The year also saw him winning Explorer of the Year Award given by the Scientific Exploration Society.

Family & Personal Life

Steve Backshall married Olympic rower, Helen Glover, in 2016 and the couple has three children including twins.

Steve backs numerous charities in UK and abroad and firmly believes that exposing kids from the very beginning to outdoors is essential to instill in them a love and passion for nature and environment.

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