Big Cat Diary

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Big Cat Diary
Big Cat Diary logo
Also known asBig Cat Week (2003–2006)
Big Cat Live (2008)
GenreNature documentary
Presented byJonathan Scott (1996–2008)
Simon King (1996–2008)
Saba Douglas-Hamilton (2002–2006)
Jackson Looseyia (2008)
Kate Silverton (2008)
ComposerDavid Poore
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original languageEnglish
No. of episodes76 (including specials)
ProducersKeith Scholey
Robin Hellier
Production locationKenya
Running time30 minutes
Production companyBBC Natural History Unit
Original release
NetworkBBC One
Release11 September 1996 (1996-09-11) –
24 December 2008 (2008-12-24)
Orangutan Diary

Big Cat Diary, also known as Big Cat Week or Big Cat Live, is a long-running nature documentary series on BBC television which followed the lives of African big cats in Kenya's Maasai Mara. The first series, broadcast on BBC One in 1996, was developed and jointly produced by Keith Scholey, who would go on to become Head of the BBC's Natural History Unit.[1] Eight series have followed, most recently Big Cat Live, a live broadcast from the Mara in 2008.

The original presenters, Jonathan Scott and Simon King, were joined by Saba Douglas-Hamilton from 2002 onwards. Kate Silverton and Jackson Looseyia were added to the presenting team for Big Cat Live.


Currently available on Region 2 DVD are the 2004, 2005 and 2006 series of Big Cat Week (packaged as series 1 to 3, with series 1 and 2 being packaged together), the 2007 series of Big Cat Diary (packaged as series 4 of Big Cat Week) and highlights from Big Cat Live (packaged as Big Cat Special). There is also a trilogy of books written by Jonathan and Angela Scott, with each focusing on the stories concerning the lions, cheetahs and leopards of the Big Cat Diary format of the show.

In 2012, Seasons 1 and 2 of the original Big Cat Diary show was made available to download on iTunes and Amazon's Instant Video services. These episodes are DVD quality or better; however, no DVD or any other physical media are available for these two seasons. Additionally, Seasons 3 and 4 of the original Big Cat Diary series are not available at all as of August 2012.

The name and format of the show has changed several times. The following table illustrates the TV air dates and DVD release dates (if applicable) of each of the seasons.[2]

Overall Season Season Name Season Year – TV air Season Year – DVD Release Availability Notes
1 Big Cat Diary – Season 1 1996–1997 n/a iTunes, Hulu,
2 Big Cat Diary – Season 2 1998 n/a iTunes, Hulu
3 Big Cat Diary – Season 3 2000–2001 n/a Hulu
4 Big Cat Diary – Season 4 2002 n/a None as of February 2015
5 Big Cat Week – Season 1 2003 2006 DVD Released in same DVD package
6 Big Cat Week – Season 2 2004 2006 DVD Released in same DVD package
7 Big Cat Week – Season 3 2006 2007 DVD
8 Big Cat Week – Season 4 2006 2008 DVD
9 Big Cat Live – Season 1 2008 (late) 2009 DVD Released as Big Cat Special


  1. ^ "BBC factual boss quits". Broadcast Now. 21 April 2008. Retrieved 31 August 2008.
  2. ^ "Big Cat Diary - All Seasons -". Archived from the original on 28 May 2013. Retrieved 29 August 2012.

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