Lucy Cooke

Lucy Cooke

The unexpected truth about animals with Lucy Cooke

Location: Oxford University Museum of Natural History, Parks Rd, Oxford, Oxfordshire, OX1 3PW
In this talk, zoologist and television presenter Lucy Cooke (Springwatch, Curious Creatures) dispels the myths and reveals the scientific truths about some of the world’s most – and least – popular animals.

Event details


19:30 to 21:30
A static map of The unexpected truth about animals with Lucy Cooke

About the event

We have a long history of getting animals wrong. We get tripped up by our egos and our urge to anthropomorphise. Penguins are cute, so we want to think of them as monogamous breeders and devoted parents. The inscrutable nature of evolution itself doesn’t help. It’s a process that unfolds across deep time, and sometimes the things that work – say, the sloth’s ultra-slow metabolism and upside down lifestyle – just look weird to us.

Vultures are unclean (myth) – Vultures hoover up pestilence and poop out purity – their acidic excrement is such an effective disinfectant you could use it as a hand sanitiser (truth).

Sloths are lazy evolutionary losers that sleep all the time (myth) – Sloths are one of the most successful tropical mammals and sleep less than 10 hours a day (truth).

Lucy Cooke unravels these myths, revealing the unexpected truths she’s uncovered whilst personally snooping on sloths, stalking drunken moose and spying on tobogganing penguins.

Please note: the talk will include reference to the reproductive behaviour of animals. Parental guidance is advised - get in touch if you have questions at

This event is part of the Oxford Festival of Nature which is a two week festival of all things nature run by BBOWT and collaborative partners across the city of Oxford. It runs between the 25 May 2019 – 9 June 2019. There are so many events to come along to and learn about wildlife and nature around you. From comedy nights to children’s night-time safaris – there is something that everyone can take part in. For more information about the Oxford Festival of Nature visit our webpage:




£12 / £10 concessions

Additional booking information

16+ years only

Know before you go


Guide dogs only
(including Assistance dogs)


Accessible to all including wheelchair users

Contact us

Contact email:
Oxford University Museum of Natural History Logo

Oxford University Museum of Natural History Logo