Animal Magic (1962-1984): Programme 407
An instant hit, Animal Magic was a fun-filled show, using an entertaining format to teach children about animals and their care. Covering infant gorillas, the origins of the elephant's trunk and challenges police horses face, Animal Magic: 407 is a lively, action-packed animal spectacular, typical of the hugely popular show.
A runaway success, much of its longevity is attributed to its charming host Johnny Morris, his appealing manner making a star not only out of himself but many of his creature companions. Discovered by renowned BBC producer Desmond Hawkins telling jokes in a local pub, 'Zookeeper Morris' combined knockabout clowning with a gentle knack for storytelling. Adopting an anthropomorphic approach, he creates various voices for his animal friends.
Beginning wildlife enthusiast Terry Nutkins' stint as co-presenter, Animal Magic 407 was the first to include his hand-reared sea lion, Gemini, who featured heavily in the show and even had a song recorded about her. A light-hearted and engaging children's show, Animal Magic ran for twenty one years providing a whole generation with a keener understanding of animals, their needs and personalities.