Aubrey Manning

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Aubrey Manning
Born Aubrey William George Manning
(1930-04-24) 24 April 1930 (age 87)
Chiswick, London
Nationality English

Aubrey William George Manning, OBE, FRSE, FRSB, (born 24 April 1930 in London, UK) is a distinguished English zoologist and broadcaster.


Manning was born in Chiswick, but moved with his family to Englefield Green in Surrey when the Second World War broke out.[1] He was educated at Strode's Grammar School in Egham, at University College London, where he read zoology, and then at Merton College, Oxford,[2] where he completed his DPhil under Niko Tinbergen. After National Service, he joined the University of Edinburgh as an assistant lecturer. His main research and teaching interests are on animal behaviour, development, and evolution. He has been involved with environmental issues since 1966, and with the Centre for Human Ecology since its inception at the University of Edinburgh in 1970. He was Professor of Natural History at the university from 1973–1997. In December 1997, a gallery in the Natural History Collection of Edinburgh University was named in his honour on his retirement. He is now Emeritus Professor.

Honours and public offices[edit]

Manning was elected Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh (1973), and received an OBE in 1998. He also holds honorary doctorates from Université Paul Sabatier in Toulouse, the University of St Andrews, and the Open University. He received the Zoological Society of London Silver Medal in 2003, for public understanding of science.

Among his many posts, he has been Chairman of Edinburgh Brook Advisory Centre, Chairman of Council of the Scottish Wildlife Trust, and a trustee of the National Museums of Scotland and of Project Wallacea. He was President of the Royal Society of Wildlife Trusts from 2005 to 2010, and is Patron of Population Matters, (formerly known as the Optimum Population Trust).[3]

Writing and broadcasting[edit]

He has written An Introduction to Animal Behaviour (1967) published by Cambridge University Press, which is now in its fifth edition. His television broadcasts have included: BBC Two's Earth Story, "Landscape Mysteries", and Talking Landscapes. His radio broadcasts included The Rules of Life for BBC Radio 4 and the Open University in 2006.[4] He also broadcast five series of Radio 4's Unearthing Mysteries, Sounds of Life, and Origins: the Human Connection.


In 1959, he married the zoologist Dr. Margaret Bastock (d. 1982) with whom he had two sons. In 1985, he married Joan Hermann, PhD, with whom he had another son.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "OU on the BBC: Rules of Life – Meet Aubrey". Open University. 24 October 2005. Retrieved 21 December 2012. 
  2. ^ Levens, R.G.C., ed. (1964). Merton College Register 1900-1964. Oxford: Basil Blackwell. p. 426. 
  3. ^ "Population Matters Patron". Archived from the original on 25 June 2014. 
  4. ^ "The Rules of Life". BBC Radio 4. 2005–2006. Retrieved 21 December 2012. 

External links[edit]

Non-profit organization positions
Preceded by
David Bellamy
President of the Wildlife Trusts
Succeeded by
Simon King