Liz Bonnin

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Liz Bonnin
Liz Bonnin sitting in meadow 2 Credit Andrew Crowley.jpg
Bonnin in June 2018
Elizabeth Bonnin

(1975-09-16) 16 September 1975 (age 44)[1]
NationalityIrish, formerly French
EducationTrinity College, Dublin (BA)
Royal Veterinary College (MSc)
OccupationTelevision presenter
Years active2002–present
Musical career
OriginParis, France

Elizabeth Bonnin (born 16 September 1975) is a French-born Irish science, wildlife and natural history presenter, who has worked on television in both Ireland and the United Kingdom.[2][3] She is also a biochemist and wild animal biologist.[4] She presented morning show RI:SE and music show Top of the Pops in the early 2000s.

She is best known for presenting wildlife and science programmes including Galapagos, How the Earth Works, Animals in Love, Stargazing Live, Blue Planet Live, Cats v Dogs: Which is Best? and Should We Close Our Zoos?.[4]

She co-presented the BBC factual series Bang Goes the Theory from 2009 until 2014 and since 2013, has co-presented Countrywise for ITV.

In 2019, she presented "Meat: A Threat to our Planet?"

Early life and education[edit]

Bonnin was born in Paris to a Trinidadian mother, of Indian and Portuguese descent, and a French-Martiniquan father, who was a dentist.[3][5] Her family moved to Ireland when she was nine years old.[2][3]

Bonnin has a bachelor's degree in biochemistry from Trinity College, Dublin,[2][6] She also holds a master's degree in wild animal biology and conservation from the Zoological Society of London and the Royal Veterinary College (2008), for which she tracked tigers in Nepal.[7][8] She continues to work on big cat conservation programmes at the Zoological Society.[citation needed]


Bonnin began her career by joining an Irish girl pop group named Chill, who signed to Polydor but broke up before recording.[9] The band had performed on Dustin the Turkey's third album Faith of Our Feathers, duetting on "We Are Family".[10] She was offered a job hosting the IRMA Awards which led to presenting roles on RTÉ Television in Ireland, on The Den, Telly Bingo, Millennium Eve: Celebrate 2000 and for two years, Off the Rails with Fiona McShane.[2] At the time she was in a relationship with the publisher John Ryan.[11][12] In 2002, she moved to London to present on a number of TV channels.[13]

In 2002, she became one of the presenters of the Channel 4 morning show RI:SE, specialising in reporting on entertainment-related stories.[14] In the same year she became a regular presenter on Top of the Pops in the UK.[15]

In 2004, Bonnin was locked in a giant kennel along with MPs Paul Burstow, Evan Harris and Ivan Henderson and actress Liza Goddard, BBC Newsround presenter Lizzie Greenwood and DJ Becky Jago in a stunt to launch the annual RSPCA Week to raise awareness and funds.[16]

Since 2005, Bonnin has been involved in science broadcasting. She presented the show Gadgets, Gadgets, Gadgets in 2005[17] and co-presented the BBC science series Bang Goes the Theory on BBC One from 2009 until 2014.[18] In 2008, Bonnin presented a documentary series Science Friction on RTÉ One which looked at taboos in discussions of scientific topics (such as paedophilia and nuclear power) in Ireland.[2][19] She also contributed to BBC Two's series on the work of the London Natural History Museum, Museum of Life.[20]

In October 2010, she joined the cast of Autumnwatch and in January 2011, she presented segments of BBC Two's Stargazing Live from various areas of Hawaii including atop Mauna Kea.[21] In May 2011, she co-presented BBC One's Egypt's Lost Cities.[22]

Personal life[edit]

Bonnin grew up with her older sister Benni, while she said that "I was extremely close to my granny, who passed away in 2003."[citation needed] She has moved back to London.[citation needed]

Bonnin is a role model for EDF Energy's Pretty Curious programme, which is aimed at encouraging teenage girls to study science-based subjects at school.[23] She has said in a 2016 interview, "FHM offered me a spread but I said no."[1]


Year Title Roles Channel
1999–2000 Millennium Eve: Celebrate 2000 Co-presenter RTÉ One
2000–? Off the Rails Co-presenter
2002–? RI:SE Co-presenter Channel 4
2002–2003 Top of the Pops Co-presenter BBC One
2003 Never Mind the Buzzcocks Guest BBC Two [24]
2004–2005 Wild Trials Presenter RTÉ
2005–? Gadgets, Gadgets, Gadgets Co-presenter
2008 Science Friction Presenter RTÉ One
2009–2014 Bang Goes the Theory Co-presenter BBC One
2009–2010 Country Tracks Co-presenter BBC Two
2010 Museum of Life Co-presenter
2010–2011 Autumnwatch Guest presenter
2011— Stargazing Live Co-presenter BBC One/BBC Two
2011 Egypt's Lost Cities Presenter BBC One
Springwatch Guest presenter BBC Two
2012 Super Smart Animals Presenter BBC One
Horizon: The Transit of Venus Presenter BBC Two
2013 Tomorrow's World: A Horizon Special Presenter
Operation Snow Tiger Presenter
2013— Countrywise Co-presenter ITV
2013 Animal Odd Couples Presenter BBC One
How the Earth Works Co-presenter Discovery Channel
2014 Cat Watch 2014: The New Horizon Experiment Presenter BBC Two
Animals Through The Night: Sleepover At The Zoo Co-presenter BBC Four
2015 Big Blue Live Co-presenter BBC One
Animals in Love Presenter
India: Nature's Wonderland Co-presenter BBC Two
2016 Cats v Dogs: Which is Best? Co-presenter
Horizon – Should We Close Our Zoos?
Nature's Epic Journeys Presenter BBC One
2017 Galapagos Presenter
Wild Alaska Live Co-presenter
2018 Drowning In Plastic Presenter
2019 Blue Planet Live Co-presenter
Would I Lie to You? Guest
Snow Animals Presenter
Meat: A Threat to our Planet? Presenter


  1. ^ a b John Meagher (15 May 2016). "Former RTE star Liz Bonnin on choosing science over celebrity: 'FHM offered me a spread but I said no'". Retrieved 9 December 2016.
  2. ^ a b c d e Jarlath Regan (15 November 2014). "Liz Bonin". An Irishman Abroad (Podcast). No. 61. SoundCloud. Archived from the original on 8 December 2015. Retrieved 2 December 2014.
  3. ^ a b c "About Liz". Liz Bonnin. Archived from the original on 11 December 2016. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  4. ^ a b "Liz Bonnin - The Gordon Poole Agency Ltd". The Gordon Poole Agency Ltd. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  5. ^ "Why Liz Bonnin dream's of living in provence". Coventry Telegraph. 1 July 2011. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  6. ^ "Meet Liz Bonnin". Retrieved 4 November 2010.
  7. ^ Jeremy Torrance. "Nature UK: Autumnwatch: Ask Liz Bonnin a question". BBC. Retrieved 4 June 2012.
  8. ^ O'Connor, Stuart (16 April 2010). "Liz Bonnin: 'I'm still a nerd, just a different type of a nerd'". The Guardian. Retrieved 11 August 2010.
  9. ^ "Can Liz Bonnin RI:SE to the Occasion?". ShowBiz Ireland. 14 June 2002.
  10. ^ "Dustin-Faith of our Feathers track list". Retrieved 2 December 2014.
  11. ^ "Olaf bares all". The Irish Times. 25 November 2000. Retrieved 3 April 2017.
  12. ^ Jackson, Joe (14 September 2000). "John Ryan Interview". Hot Press Magazine. Retrieved 3 April 2017.
  13. ^ "Liz Bonnin and Gordon D'Arcy". RTÉ. Retrieved 14 April 2008.
  14. ^ "Liz Bonnin". Retrieved 14 April 2008.
  15. ^ "Top of the Pops 2 – Trivia". BBC. Retrieved 14 April 2008.
  16. ^ "MPs in the doghouse for charity". BBC. 26 April 2004.
  17. ^ Gadgets, Gadgets, Gadgets on IMDb
  18. ^ "Talking Shop:Liz Bonnin". BBC. 3 June 2009.
  19. ^ "SCIENCE FRICTION ***New Series***". RTÉ Press Centre. 4 February 2008. Retrieved 2 December 2014.
  20. ^ "Museum of Life" (Press release). BBC. 11 November 2009.
  21. ^ "Stargazing Live: TV Gold". 6 January 2011.
  22. ^ "Egypt's Lost Cities". 31 May 2011.
  23. ^ Huffington Post UK
  24. ^ ""Never Mind the Buzzcocks" Episode #12.10 (TV Episode 2003)". IMdb.

External links[edit]