Brit explorer Ed Stafford explains why he no longer films his 'Marooned' series naked


Naked And Marooned's Ed Stafford has admitted that the nudity for which his survivalist Discovery series is remembered for was "a stunt".

The 40-year-old explorer embarked on an extreme survival challenge on a remote island in the nude back in 2013.

When asked how Marooned With Ed Stafford differs from the previous incarnation, Ed said he will be seen wearing "a full set of clothes".

Ed Stafford is wearing clothes in his new series  (Discovery)
Ed Stafford is wearing clothes in his new series (Discovery)

"It's an evolution of the whole concept. Gone is the nakedness - a stunt that was long past its sell-by-date," he told the Press Association.

"The programme stands alone without me needing to be naked. I wear shorts in most of the episodes and in northern Norway, I'm even allowed to wear a full set of clothes.

"But the evolution is more than cloth deep. This series, Discovery Channel have allowed me to make these almost like little snapshot films about life: about successes and failures; about stressing and calming yourself; about why we even bother to get up in the morning," he added.

Marooned With Ed Stafford (Discovery)
Marooned With Ed Stafford (Discovery)

"These shows go into more emotional depth than any other adventure show I've watched."

In Marooned With Ed Stafford, airing on Discovery Channel UK, the intrepid Brit tackles new challenges in some of the most inhospitable and extreme environments - equipped with nothing but an emergency phone, medical kit and his camera to record his adventures.

In 2010, Ed became the first man to walk the length of the Amazon River in South America. He walked for 860 days. Why does he feel the need to tackle these kinds of feats?

Explorer Ed Stafford (Jonathan Brady/PA)
Explorer Ed Stafford (Jonathan Brady/PA)

"The answer to the 'Why?' question has definitely changed over the years," Ed said. "Initially I was driven by a fierce immature desire to prove myself - it no doubt originated from a deep insecurity, but I had a huge drive to beat my chest and show off.

"I now find myself in the enviable position to be able to still go on extraordinary adventures and keep myself grounded and humble by doing so. My motivation is now far more that I want to continue to put myself in situations where I have to think outside of the box.

"If I'm innovating and experimenting then I'm learning and growing wiser. For me that's a very good reason to keep going."

 Ed Stafford (Jonathan Brady/PA)
Ed Stafford (Jonathan Brady/PA)

On the subject of the best and worst thing he ate while filming Marooned With Ed Stafford, the Peterborough-born explorer is honest to a degree that is not for the faint-hearted.

"Although it sounds disgusting, giant bird-eating tarantulas are quite yummy," he stated.

"Indigenous Indians pin their legs back against their bodies and wrap them in a leaf. That way they can't move but they are kept alive so that they will be fresh when cooked."

Former soldier Ed Stafford (Keith Ducatel/PA)
Former soldier Ed Stafford (Keith Ducatel/PA)

He said: "I had no need to keep my tarantula alive, but just roasted it in the flames to remove the little irritating hairs and then just ate it. The abdomen was the most squeamish part to eat - I just shut my eyes and swallowed - it was full of unidentified warm juices."

If you think that sounds vomit-inducing, there's more.

Former solider Ed Stafford (Keith Ducatel/PA)
Ed Stafford (Keith Ducatel/PA)

"The worst thing I ate was seemingly innocuous tadpoles. They were abundant in Patagonia and I decided that they could provide a good source of fats and proteins. But the little reptiles are really just a sack of intestines at the early stage of development so I was just eating multiple bags of faeces."

The former soldier added: "They tasted sharp - exactly the taste that makes you think, "I really shouldn't be eating these." They had a kind of after hit of nausea that accompanied them too."

Marooned With Ed Stafford is broadcast on Discovery Channel UK on May 8 at 9pm.