Naturalist Sir David Attenborough has described humans as a "plague on the Earth" while speaking out about population growth.
The 86-year-old veteran broadcaster, who was educated in Leicester, warned of the need to control the increase in population in order to save the planet.
Talking to the Radio Times, Sir David, who is chairman of the group Population Matters, which calls for smaller family sizes, said if humans did not sort out the problem, nature would do it for us.
He said increasing populations were adding to climate change.
He told the magazine: "We are a plague on the Earth.
"It's coming home to roost over the next 50 years or so.
"It's not just climate change. It's sheer space, places to grow food for this enormous horde.
"Either we limit our population growth or the natural world will do it for us – and the natural world is doing it for us right now.
"We keep putting on programmes about famine in Ethiopia – that's what's happening. Too many people there.
"They can't support themselves. It's not an inhuman thing to say, it's the case.
"Until humanity manages to sort itself out and get a co-ordinated view about the planet, it's going to get worse and worse."
Speaking to the Mercury yesterday, he said: "Western European countries are not growing at such a speed, but those elsewhere are increasing significantly.
"It's a problem for these nations' governments to decide what can be done."
Sir David, who can currently be seen presenting Africa, on BBC2, was speaking to the Radio Times ahead of his new show, Natural Curiosities, which is to be aired on the Eden channel soon.
The five-part series shines the spotlight on evolutionary anomalies and how these curious animals continue to baffle and fascinate.
Sir David, who has six decades of documentary making under his belt, described his presenting style in the Radio Times as a "bit out of fashion".
He said that it was cheaper for producers to put someone in front of a camera describing the way in which animals behave rather than actually showing it.
He said: "The kind of carefully tailored programmes in which you really work at the commentary, match pictures to words, is a bit out of fashion now... regarded as old hat."
For more on Sir David's latest series, see More Magazine on Saturday.