Charlotte Uhlenbroek was born in London, but spent only 10 days on British soil before her parents moved to Ghana. Her Dutch father was an agricultural specialist with the UN who took his family round the world with him. Her mother is English.
From the age of five to fourteen she lived in Kathmandu, Nepal where her love of animals developed. Her family kept a menagerie of animals - cats, dogs, rabbits, guinea pigs and parrots - many of them rescued by Charlotte. She used to wander the streets of Kathmandu trying to rescue stray dogs. To Charlotte, Nepal will always be a special place.
She furthered her interest in animals through her degree in Zoology and Psychology, at the University of Bristol. After university, Charlotte spent four years in the forests of Gombe, Tanzania, studying the communication of wild chimpanzees, under the auspices of world-famous Jane Goodall for her PhD. She lived in a tiny hut on the shores of Lake Tanganyika and spent her days with the chimps in the forest.
One of Charlotte’s greatest nightmares are killer bees - she has been chased through the African jungle by swarms of them. She's wary of crocodiles too - "you can’t negotiate with them!" Her favourite animals are elephants, wolves and of course, chimps.
She supports various organizations including the Ape Alliance, Fauna and Flora International, World Development Movement, Compassion in World Farming, Free Tibet, and the Jane Goodall Institute.
Charlotte's first appearance on the screen was in the BBC Natural History Unit's Dawn to Dusk series, in a programme on Gombe and its chimps. Her talent was recognised and she went on to present BBC2's Chimpanzee Diary as part of the Animal Zone.
Respected and admired by her peers Sir David Attenborough named Charlotte as his potential successor believing she has the knowledge and the skills required. He said “I would be happy to see Charlotte take on a presenting role like this. She knows what she is talking about and is an excellent presenter.”