Actress Joanna Lumley hails world's finest wildlife filmmakers in awards held in Bristol.

The World's best wildlife filmmakers gathered in Bristol last night for the "Oscars" of their industry.
The 2008 Panda Awards, which recognise and reward the best wildlife and environmental films from around the globe, were held at Temple Meads' Passenger Shed. Actress, humanitarian and animal rights campaigner Joanna Lumley hosted the awards, which are part of the Wildscreen Festival.

Wildlife filming legend Sir David Attenborough presented the top award, the Golden Panda, to Bristol's very own BBC Natural History Unit for its programme Armoured Giants – The Cold Blooded Truth.

Life in Cold Blood, Golden Panda award winners

The Natural History Unit had a successful night, picking up five awards. As well as the Golden Panda, the Bristol department won the Earth Sciences Award for Earth: The Power of the Planet – Atmosphere, in which presenter Dr Iain Stewart shows how the atmosphere has shaped the world we live in.

It also picked up the Natural History Museum Environment Award for Battle to Save the Tiger, which examines the threat of extinction faced by the tiger, and the Films at 59 Award for best sound for Galapagos: Born of Fire, which follows the lives of the animals living on the group of islands that shaped Darwin's theory of evolution.

The Bristol Natural History Unit also won the best editing award for Expedition Guyana, in which an international team of naturalists, filmmakers and climbers travel deep into the heart of the jungle to search for animals that live in the little-discovered South American country.
The unit was also co-producer on a number of other winning programmes.

The Panda Awards, which have been running for 26 years, are the most prestigious in the natural history filmmaking calendar.

More than 420 entries were received this year, with 22 prizes handed out at the Bristol ceremony.

This is Bristol

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