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Olivia Binfield: Britain's Amazing Animal Protector - P1/2    
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Hallo, tender-hearted viewers, and welcome to Animal World: Our Co-Inhabitants. On today’s program we present part one of a two-part series featuring eight-year old Olivia Binfield, a little girl with a big heart.

Although just a child, Olivia dedicates herself to protecting and preserving our animal friends. For example, in 2011 she appeared on the popular British TV show, “Britain’s Got Talent,” reciting her poem “Endangered Animals.” Olivia presented the poem with Lucy, her boa constrictor friend, draped lovingly around her neck. Here is Olivia’s recitation of “Endangered Animals.”

Come on, Don’t you have a heart?
You don’t want these animals to depart.
Forget the X Factor and the top 10 singing chart.
Look at the most endangered animals and the Poison darts (frogs).
The Amur leopard, Siberian tiger and Polar bear.
They’re so gorgeous, it’s just not fair!
If I say their Latin names, will you listen more?
Oh Louis (Walsh), please don’t say this is a bore!
Varanus komodoensis: Komodo Dragon, by the way.
Why does man have to take them all away?
Why does he hunt and poach?
Man, you are such a fool!
Snakes skinned alive for handbags?
That is just not cool.
Please listen to my passion, although it may not be in fashion.
I cannot sing it, you might laugh.
I cannot dance, you would say that I was daft.
But I am seven and I want these animals to last.

How did you get into writing poetry? Did you read poems?

I did read a couple of poems and my grandpa is a poet and he’s a really good artist. We just have the same feeling for poetry.

Why did Olivia decide to compose this poem?

When I went on "Britain’s Got Talent," I decided to write a poem to show that we shouldn’t harm animals. And animals are cute. They deserve looking after. "Britain’s Got Talent" is watched by many people. And if I could spread the word, the best way to do it would be on "Britain’s Got Talent." And I can show thousands and millions of people who watch it.

When and how did you first become interested in animals?

I became interested in animals when I was very young, and I have always loved them ever since then.

Can you tell us about Lucy, your pet Boa Constrictor.

Well, Lucy is really friendly and she would never harm any human. And I’ve had her for a while. And when the sun shines on her scales, it turns purple and different colors. And it’s really beautiful. She is really nice. And I sometimes play with her. She is really elegant, and she often tears up little branches that we put in the tank.

Why did you choose Lucy out of all your pets?

Lucy is really clever. And she's really brave. And she won’t run off or anything. She's very calm.

What other pets do you have?

I have three dogs. One's a mommy and she has two puppies. The mommy and the girl dog are chocolate and the boy dog is yellow. And then I’ve got a rabbit called Aslan, and we have two horses, Bonnie and Boo.

Do you see any ways that they show that they love you?

Yes, because I do have these books, and they tell me about dog language. And when they lick you, it means they love you.

Aslan really loves being picked up and snuggling in your arms. And when he goes in your arms, he’s really quiet. And he loves being hand-fed. And Bonny and Boo will neigh and swish their tails and they eat their hay on your arm. And it's really cute.

Olivia next showed us her room, which is filled with toys and books about animals.

This is the hooved animals and dog area. Over here, we have the bears and monkeys and that is the trees. This is reptiles, birds and amphibians. And this is the cats. This down here is my water area and this is other animals.

Can you tell us about your photos as well?

That’s me on my birthday and I was kissing a tortoise. This is when I went to Durrell (Wildlife Park, UK). This was one of the bats I stroked. This down here is one of the Aye-ayes I saw near a cove here. And this was the type of Poison Dart frog that I held. These are some lions and these are some monkeys that we saw hopping around the enclosures.

Here is a little tiger I got when I went to a wild place and I named it after one of the tigers I saw. He’s called Bruno. The tiger Bruno is one of the most comfortable ones. He actually laid by us. And he didn’t growl or anything. He was really tame, pretty much. But he was still wild. And he was really cute. And he was one of the oldest tigers there in the place.

Olivia is deeply concerned about the thoughtless and cruel ways in which humans often treat our animal co-inhabitants.

Well, there’re lots of ways we harm animals. We cut down trees which are important for animals that live in trees. Sometimes we poach for sport and lots of people kill them for medicine like tiger bones and tiger wine and fur. People kill them for fur, like tiger skins and coats, and sometimes even people use them for carpets, which really isn’t nice.

Because of her compassion for animals, Olivia decided on her own at age three not to eat meat.

Some of the teachers tried to make me eat meat, but I said "Nope.”

I remember that we went for a drive, and she saw the lambs in the field. And then she put two and two together that the food was from animals. And so she said, "I'm never eating animals, no animals." And she wanted to know all the names of the animals, the cow and the beef, so that she would never eat any of them. I support her totally because it’s what she wants and it’s what she believes in, so I’m absolutely behind her.

And was it easy to get the school in alignment with it?

Yes, the school has been fine. They were a little bit (hesitant) to begin with. I think they thought she was just being fussy. But now they know what she’s like and they all want to hear her stories.

Ms. Binfield fully supports her daughter’s efforts to help preserve and protect our animal co-inhabitants.

I just remember loving animals and thinking you could always rely on them and you can’t rely on people, and that animals are always there for you and love you no matter what. If you're having a bad day, they don't mind. They’re always there for you. So I think I just love all animals. And I'd love to help them.

How do you encourage and support her passion?

Whatever she wants to do in the holidays, if she wants to go and see a certain animal or something, we go and do it. I am constantly buying books. She has hundreds and hundreds of books, information books, and very heavy encyclopedias. She just sits and reads all of them, all the time. So I’m constantly buying books in that way, and all the wildlife things that we can, that she wants to join.

Let’s now hear one more fine poem by Olivia, entitled “Going, going, gone.”

You may say I’m only seven,
But I don’t want the animals to go to Heaven
Before they’ve had a decent life.
I don’t want them to be cut up with a butcher’s knife.
You may say I’m rather small,
But what I believe in my heart is big and tall.
Endangered animals need to be saved.
Those who hunt and kill them are depraved.
Michael (McIntyre), I hear you do a funny pitch.
But it’s no joke when the Red lemur ends in a ditch.
David (Hasselhoff), I hear you're from the big USA,
So help us to keep greedy poachers away.
Forget Baywatch, let's animal watch, eh?
Beautiful peace-loving vegetarian Amanda (Holden),
You share this trait with the Giant panda.
The Black rhino has lived for a million years.
Why kill it for its horns?
That’s just superstitious fears.
The African wild dog, The Pygmy hog,
The Hamilton frog, The Hispid hare,
The Polar bear, The Common skate,
Who are we to decide their fate?

How does Olivia encourage other children to treat animals with respect? To find out as well as hear another of her poems, please join us again tomorrow on Animal World: Our Co-Inhabitants, as we present the concluding part of our interview with the delightful, dedicated, young animal advocate, Olivia Binfield.

For more information on Olivia Binfield, please visit www.OliviaBinfield.co.uk
or follow her on Facebook. Read her tweets at www.Twitter.com/OliviaBinfield

Thank you for presence today on our program. May all beings on Earth be forever free, respected and allowed to live in dignity.
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