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Sir David is also known as a man who is often reticent to take the spotlight - he hates being referred to as a national treasure, for example, as I just did there - and that was laid bare on BBC News this afternoon.
Attenborough was left exasperated by presenter Naga Munchetty, who kept asking him about himself and his meetings with the Queen and the Royal Family rather than the thing that he had actually been invitd on to talk about - the state of Britain's butterflies.
"Plastics have become such a concern now for businesses and people in their everyday lives and that is down to you," began Munchetty.
Clearly deflecting the talk from himself, Sir David answered: "I don't know about that - a lot of very powerful voices have been working at this for a while."
"You recently had a discussion with the Queen," she continued. "We're very keen to know whether you discussed plastics when you did meet her."
"No we did not. No we did not," replied the TV legend curtly.
Munchetty kept going, evidently not getting the point, saying: "Prince Charles is a big advocate of helping the environment - it's an issue that does appear to be held closely to the royal family's heart."
But Attenborough again gave her short shrift, answering curtly: "That may be, yes."
Munchetty continued: "I understand your reluctance for that conversation but perhaps you'd be keen to talk about the launch of the RRS Attenborough? The boat recently launched..." - only for Attenborough to abruptly cut her off.
"I wanted to talk about the big butterfly count. That's why you invited me here," he replied, bluntly.
"Of course and we will do and we will continue to," assuaged Munchetty, before delving back into her chat about David himself, rather than his campaign.
"But we can't resist the opportunity to talk about more [than that] because you're so fondly held in many people's hearts.
"An example of that is the naming of that boat and the launch of which you were at - was that a significant moment for you?"
"Yes it was," answered Attenborough, clearly annoyed once more.
"And how did you feel when you saw it launch?" continued Naga.
"It was a very moving occasion," replied the veteran presenter, wearily.
Seeing as Naga Munchetty was reticent to ask her interviewee about his work with butterflies, let's look into it here.
Sir David is the public face of The Big Butterfly Count, an initiative of Butterfly Conservation. They're asking people to count the butterflies that come into their garden over the summer, with the goal of gauging national number.
"I have been privileged to have witnessed some truly breath-taking wildlife spectacles in far-flung locations but some of my most memorable experiences have happened when I've been simply sitting and watching the wildlife that lives where I do," said Attenborough, who is the President of Butterfly Conservation.
"A few precious moments spent watching a stunning red admiral or peacock butterfly feeding amongst the flowers in my garden never fails to bring me great pleasure.
"Spending time with nature offers us all precious breathing space away from the stresses and strains of modern life, it enables us to experience joy and wonder, to slow down and to appreciate the wildlife that lives side by side with us."
To take part in The Big Butterfly Count, simply download their chart from the website and then sit in your garden, a park, a wood or anywhere out in nature for 15 minutes, counting butterflies - then submit your findings. Easy.
Featured Image Credit: PA
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