“The Rewild Podcast” series will see travelling photographer and filmmaker James Shooter visit a wide range of European rewilding initiatives, with stories showcasing the people, passion and positive message of European nature recovery.
Rewilding on the road
Launching today, a new podcast series is set to take listeners on an immersive audio journey across Europe, meeting many of the passionate people and inspiring initiatives currently enabling nature recovery on the continent. A collaboration between Rewilding Europe and series presenter James Shooter – a UK-based conservation photographer and filmmaker, and former Outreach Manager at Scotland: The Big Picture – “The Rewild Podcast” will bring each of Rewilding Europe’s rewilding landscapes to life, as well as taking an in-depth look at the work of many other leading European rewilding organisations, including members of the European Rewilding Network.
James Shooter, who has sold his house and left his job, will travel around Europe for a year with his wife, two children and dog in a motor home to put the podcasts together. For the keen rewilder, the journey is about more than simply challenging himself and seeing as much wild nature as possible.
“My family and I are naturally excited at the thought of experiencing some of Europe’s finest wildest places,’ he explains. “But aside from this, I want to tell listeners some really informative, entertaining and inspiring stories through these podcasts. These days there’s always a lot of bad news about the environment and nature. I want to use this series to spread the positive message of rewilding – to demonstrate to people how it can and does enable nature recovery, and to showcase the range of benefits it can deliver. And through this message, hopefully get more people involved in the rewilding movement.”
The Rewild Podcast playlist will see each episode explore one European rewilding initiative. Lasting 30 to 40 minutes, every podcast will feature interviews with several contributors, as well as on-site sounds, natural soundscapes, and music samples.
“These podcasts will really go behind the scenes of rewilding,” explains Shooter. “Rewilding is about people as much as nature, so I want to give passionate rewilders a platform to not only discuss the work they do, but why they do it too.”
One podcast will be aired on the last Monday of every month, with January’s kick-off edition focusing on the Affric Highlands rewilding landscape, which became the ninth member of Rewilding Europe’s landscape portfolio in 2021.
“Many visitors come to Scotland for romantic notions of wildness, but the ecological truth is that the country is massively nature-depleted,” says Shooter. “The Caledonian Forest, for example, once stretched over much of the land, but today only a few scattered remnants remain. I’ll not only discuss why this is, and various other challenges facing Scottish nature, but look at the solutions provided by rewilding, in the Affric Highlands and beyond.”
Continuing the Scottish theme, February’s podcast will look at ERN member Seawilding, which is working to restore seagrass beds and oyster populations in Loch Craignish and support the creation of green jobs.
Podcasts on the rise
Twenty years ago nobody had heard of a podcast, yet today the industry is booming, with new podcasts and their listeners joining the audio medium every day. Podcasts have surged in popularity, with over 2.4 million available to access on a variety of digital platforms.
The ever-increasing use of smartphones has made it easier for people to consume digital content such as podcasts. Without the same content control as exists in radio and television, podcasting has allowed creators from all walks of life to make shows that appeal to large and diverse audiences.
“The Rewild Podcast is a really accessible, down-to-earth show that will appeal to anyone who wants to learn about and be inspired by rewilding in Europe,” says Shooter. “You don’t need any background knowledge to tune in – simply listen while you’re relaxing, driving, or ideally out in nature somewhere.”
Episodes of the Rewild Podcast can be listened to on bigger platforms, such as Spotify and Apple. Alternatively, subscribe to the series on the Podbean channel page to receive new episode notifications.
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