Gillian Burke

Gillian is a biologist with an eye for drama and storytelling. She is a bright new face to TV presenting but no stranger to broadcasting. Already an accomplished narrator and voice-over artist, Gillian has recently taken her rich vein of stories in front of the camera. Following guest appearances on Springwatch and Autumnwatch last year, several field reports and a live segment alongside Martin Hughes-Games for Winterwatch, Gillian has since been announced as the latest addition to the BBC’s much-loved Springwatch team.

Having earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Biology from Bristol University, Gillian pursued a career in natural history filmmaking, working her way up the ranks from Researcher to Producer/Director on several Animal Planet and Discovery Channel series.

Gillian is passionate about sharing her love of the natural world through film, and is a particular champion of the animals most people love to loathe. Her film credits hint at her reputation for being happy to work with the outcasts of the animal kingdom – from Ultimate Guide to Spiders & Ants for Discovery Channel; to King Cobra! & Anaconda! for Animal Planet’s Snakemaster series; to the ground-breaking, and one of the highest grossing IMAX films to date, Bugs! 3D – this is literally as big as it gets for a film about insects!

Her filming experience has had her herding llamas in the high Andes to free-diving with swarms of sea snakes in the South China Sea; from crawling through rattlesnake dens in the Arizona desert to climbing a living, writhing mountain of cockroaches & centipedes in a bat cave in Borneo. 

Her narration and voice-over work has earned her credits on films like the gritty art-house documentary Sylvia: Tracing Blood, about the secret life of the female Mossad agent, played by Daniel Craig, in Steven Spielberg’s film "Munich”. She has also narrated behind-the-scenes films for Disneynature’s ninth cinematic release Born In China and the award-winning, feature-length special Clash of Africa’s Giants for Animal Planet.  She has read several audiobook titles and recently won an industry Earphones Award and praise for her narration for The Sudden Appearance of Hope by Claire North for Little Brown Book Group.

Gillian has lived and worked in four of the five continents and with African, Native American, European, Asian, Polynesian and Oriental ancestry, she has genuine claims to world citizenship.

Gillian is proud to be born in Kenya, where she was blessed with a feral childhood spent barefoot and crouched in makeshift hides intently watching for birds and other wildlife.  At the age of 10, her family moved to Vienna, Austria. Although the ‘bush-to-ballet’ contrast could not have been starker, she loved and embraced her new, cultured life but never lost her natural curiosity and passion for the natural world.

Gillian lives by the sea where she enjoys paddle-boarding, snorkeling and kayaking.  She is a competent skier, horse-rider and qualified PADI-Advanced diver with over 100-logged diving hours. Gillian loves her all-weather outdoor fitness and strength training, where she is pursuing an arguably misplaced ambition to improve her Olympic lifting technique.  She also does a weekly voice ‘work out’ with a Gospel Choir where she sings in the soprano section and solos.