A WREXHAM-based wildlife photographer has spoken out about her time with David Attenborough and how people can be more environmentally friendly ahead of the release of her new book.

Sue Flood, 53, Rossett, was born in St Asaph and grew up in Hawarden.

Earlier in her career, she worked with the BBC as an associate producer on television series such as The Blue Planet and Planet Earth.

Now, she is one of the world’s few woman full-time professional wildlife photographers – a career choice heavily influenced by her years growing up amid the natural beauty of North Wales and the travel stories she heard from her father, Howard, who lives in Hawarden.

Ms Flood said: "North Wales has some beautiful parts and some fantastic scenery.

"If you do something like climb Snowdon you can see the beauty of the surrounding countryside.

"My dad Howard had been in the Merchant Navy and I was always told stories about his travels which made me want to explore further afield."

In the introduction to her new book, Emperor- The Perfect Penguin, she explains: "I'd sit and listen as my father regaled us with tales from his travels. It all seemed impossibly exciting and exotic to a little girl growing up in a tiny village in North Wales."

She added: "When I was at school, I used to love watching these nature documentaries.

"It whetted my appetite for adventure but, when I said I’d love to make wildlife documentaries with David Attenborough, my teacher replied 'no one gets to do that!'"

Despite this, Ms Flood fulfilled her ambition and worked with Sir David for 11 years on series such as The Blue Planet, Planet Earth and other documentaries.

She said: "People always ask me if he is at nice as he seems on TV but he's even nicer!

"He’s the first person to give credit to the team of people he’s working with and he has inspired me and millions of others.

"I have the best job in the world and it’s a huge privilege to document the natural world in this way.

"Eighteen months ago I was very lucky to spend six weeks camping in the Antarctic, surrounded by Emperor Penguins; they are my favourite animal to photograph.

"Our nearest neighbours were 450 miles away and it was -25 degrees in my tent.

"Another of my favourite encounters was swimming with a humpback whale and her calf in Tonga.

"I was in the water with her and the current pushed me towards them, and I had to put my hand out to gently fend myself away from her.

"It was truly awe-inspiring to look this huge, gentle animal in the eye from just a metre away!.

After her experiences with marine life, Ms Flood is keen to encourage people to ditch single-use plastics.

She explained: "I think we can all do something to take little steps in helping the environment.

"Iceland have been great and are stopping using palm oil in their products.

"I have started to keep a reusable cup in my car and I also buy milk in paper cartons instead of plastic.

"If you can buy things which aren't packaged in plastic, please do. There is way too much packaging on supermarket products so make a choice and let your local shop know. Don’t use straws. Don’t use plastic bags - carry a fold up bag with you so you don’t need to waste plastic"

Ms Flood will be returning closer to home in 2019 to teach 1 and 2 day wildlife photography courses at Chester Zoo, inspiring the next generation of wildlife photographers.

As well as working with Sir David Attenborough, Sue has also travelled on photo assignments with many other well-known people – among them, Michael Palin, who will be speaking at the launch of her latest book and wrote the foreword for Emperor - the Perfect Penguin.

In addition, one of the witnesses at her marriage three years ago to her childhood sweetheart Chris Graham, also from North Wales, who met Sue at Ewloe Green primary school when she was 9, was Sir Richard Branson.

She has also been nominated for the Royal Photographic Society's Hundred Heroines award which celebrates women in photography today.

Emperor- The Perfect Penguin will be released on September 18, 2018 and will be available on Amazon or all good bookshops.