Episode 17 Weather Watchers with Barra Best


Download Subtitles

SRT

ASS


Episode 17

Barra Best experiences how the climate shapes people's lives and discovers that while nothing can be done to change the weather, people can use it to their advantage.


Similar Content

Browse content similar to Episode 17. Check below for episodes and series from the same categories and more!

Transcript


LineFromTo

# Into each life some rain must fall... #

0:00:180:00:23

In the wettest areas of Northern Ireland, over 55 days of rainfall

0:00:240:00:29

is the norm in the three months of winter, and over 45 days in summer.

0:00:290:00:34

I'd like to be able to report that the sun shines continuously in summer,

0:00:340:00:39

but that just wouldn't be true.

0:00:390:00:40

# All the ducks are swimming in the water... #

0:00:400:00:45

You'd be disappointed if I didn't say it,

0:00:450:00:46

so I'm not going to let you down.

0:00:460:00:48

It's great weather for ducks.

0:00:480:00:50

# All the ducks are swimming in the water... #

0:00:500:00:52

And this isn't an old wives' tale.

0:00:520:00:54

Research has confirmed that ducks like hanging out there in the pond

0:00:540:00:58

to enjoy the rainy weather.

0:00:580:01:00

Something else that relies on rain is bogland.

0:01:000:01:03

And the blanket bog of Cuilcagh Mountain in County Fermanagh is one

0:01:030:01:07

of the finest examples in Western Europe.

0:01:070:01:09

This may look like a nice scenic path for the ordinary rambler,

0:01:170:01:20

but of course it's doing something important for the conservation of this area.

0:01:200:01:24

Yeah.

0:01:240:01:25

The sole and only reason we put the boardwalk in is to help

0:01:250:01:28

conserve the habitat.

0:01:280:01:30

What was basically happening was the footfall of walkers was eroding this

0:01:300:01:34

rare blanket bog, so we had to take some remedial action to protect it.

0:01:340:01:38

-Today's quite a nice day, but it's not great for the midgies here.

-No!

0:01:380:01:40

We're being eaten alive. I think we need to go for a higher altitude.

0:01:400:01:43

Yes, I think so. We could try and find a bit of breeze.

0:01:430:01:46

-Well, we're halfway up.

-Mm-hmm.

-It's longer than it looks, isn't it?

-It is, yes, indeed.

0:01:510:01:54

But some of the views are spectacular.

0:01:540:01:57

The views are certainly worth it, there's no doubt.

0:01:570:01:59

You're looking right across Fermanagh here.

0:01:590:02:01

Out into Donegal, Sligo.

0:02:010:02:03

It's pretty breathtaking, all right.

0:02:030:02:05

And, what, we've got about 200 or 300 steps still ahead of us.

0:02:060:02:09

Well, we'll get there.

0:02:090:02:10

-So, no trees.

-No, no trees, no.

0:02:200:02:22

Peat's not a very good growing medium, so it's only

0:02:220:02:24

specialised plants that can tolerate those nutrient-poor conditions.

0:02:240:02:28

We're almost at the top.

0:02:360:02:37

BARRA EXHALES

0:02:370:02:38

'The trail across the bogland is over 7km long and takes us to the

0:02:380:02:43

'summit of Cuilcagh Mountain, but so far it's been worth it.'

0:02:430:02:47

Well, here we are, Richard.

0:02:470:02:50

Up to the top.

0:02:500:02:51

660 metres.

0:02:510:02:53

And it's still quite squelchy, isn't it?

0:02:540:02:56

And you can really tell that the rainfall shaped this land in front of us.

0:02:560:03:00

Yes, it has a profound effect on the landscape around us.

0:03:000:03:03

And how important is the bogland and why?

0:03:030:03:05

Well, the bog is important in its own right for its biodiversity

0:03:050:03:08

and its intrinsic environmental value,

0:03:080:03:10

but equally it acts as a carbon store.

0:03:100:03:13

This blanket bog and other bogs in Ireland are literally storing millions of tonnes of carbon.

0:03:130:03:18

The peat is basically vegetation which hasn't completely rotted,

0:03:180:03:21

so it's locked away in the bog over thousands and thousands of

0:03:210:03:24

years, so this is really almost playing the same role as the

0:03:240:03:28

Amazon rainforest in helping with climate change.

0:03:280:03:33

This is a European-protected habitat and without that level of rainfall, it wouldn't exist.

0:03:330:03:38

So, essentially you don't mind Fermanagh being called one of

0:03:380:03:40

-the wettest counties of Northern Ireland, if not Ireland?

-At times.

0:03:400:03:43

No, on my day off I'd rather it was a bit drier maybe sometimes, but what can you do?

0:03:430:03:47

-But, still, like today, the views are breathtaking, aren't they?

-Yes. Aw, it's fabulous. It really is.

0:03:470:03:51