Wildlife show. Josie and Poppie fix up a swan's leg and get some bats in a flap when they give them a wiggly treat, and Dick gets spiky in the hedgehog hospital.
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This show features professionals working with unpredictable animals.
Quite right. So do not - repeat, do not - try any of this at home.
No, no, no, no, no.
Did you know that now, right now, there's people all around the country working their socks off
to help wounded wildlife and poorly pets?
We've managed to get VIP passes for willing helpers
who are going to get stuck in at the busiest vets', wildlife sanctuaries
and rescue centres.
We did it! We did it!
'On today's show, Josie and Poppy fix a swan's leg...'
Have some breakfast.
'..and get some bats in a flap when they give them a wiggly treat.'
'Harriet and Georgina meet rare British wildlife.
'They help some wolves wolf down a feast. But clearing the table would put anyone off their dinner.'
'And we meet hedgehogs who need a hose down.'
I can't believe something so small smells so bad.
'It's tough and dirty work... but someone's got to do it.'
Today, I'm at Harper Asprey Wildlife Rescue Centre.
I know it looks just like a home. Well, it IS a home.
It's home to wounded wildlife,
whether it be a sick squirrel or a feverish fox,
any animals that need TLC, this is the place to bring them.
That's the animals sorted. Where can I find a top team of helpers?
Meet two girls having a song and dance about helping animals.
Josie and Poppy are two sisters living it up in London.
'And although they'd love a pet, their mum just won't let them.'
-Please, please! Please!
It's totally not fair, because lots of my friends have got pets.
I feel like I'm missing out on something.
These girls aren't on the ball
when it comes to wildlife in our country.
I don't know much about British wildlife,
because round here, there isn't much,
and I'd like to learn, basically, what it is.
I think we can do something about that.
-Josie, Poppy, welcome to Harper Asprey. Are you all right?
-Good. Are you animal lovers?
-Yes, we love them.
-You love them?
-But you'd like your own animals.
Cats and dogs and horses and rabbits.
This place isn't so much about cats and dogs,
but it is about British wildlife that needs rescuing and helping out.
-Shall we go in?
-Good. All right.
The people who run Harper Asprey have converted a normal house
so they can look after all sorts of wounded wildlife.
There's ducks in the bathtub. There's deer in the garden.
They look after hundreds of injured animals every year.
-Hazel, hi. How you doing? You all right?
This is Josie and Poppy. They're keen to help out. What's first?
-First thing is to feed the bats and see if they can fly properly.
-THE GIRLS LAUGH
-How do you feel about that?
Why are bats scary?
You see them in horror movies. They're evil.
So it's just the IDEA of bats that you're scared about.
You might like them by the end of the day.
-Is this something they can do, feed them?
-Let's get you some clothes, and we'll go from there.
'A quick change into some elegant protective clothing. Perfect!
'Soon the girls will see there's nothing scary about bats.
'And on the menu today are these tasty-looking mealworms,
'but first they need, erm, well, their heads chopping off,
'which will stop the worm and bat suffering.'
Hazel, why is it important to cut the heads off the mealworms?
Sometimes, apparently, if you don't,
the mealworm eats the inside of the bat,
-which is not very pleasant.
So, who wants to chop some heads off some mealworms?
I think Josie does!
Ha-ha! Because you've been a horrible sister and put her forward,
I think YOU should have to do it now!
-Is that fair?
You've volunteered yourself to chop the heads off mealworms.
'The baby bats need their breakfast, so it's an essential job.
'But will the girls manage to get the gruesome grub to the bats?
'First, let's see what Dick's team have ahead of them
'at a British wildlife centre in Kent.'
Today, I'm at Wild Wood.
You might ask why it's called Wild Wood. Well, there's lots of wild animals and we're in a wood.
Genius. They look after threatened British animals. Helping hands are never turned away.
This place is packed to the treetops with all sorts of British animals,
from those you'd expect to some you most certainly wouldn't.
Our eager helpers will have their work cut out here.
Meet Georgina and Harriet.
Thankfully, we've got two girls who are up for the challenge
but aren't wild about wildlife.
And while Georgina has a soft spot for animals...
I like wild animals, but I'm kind of scared to get too close to them.
..she's not alone in saying wildlife gives her the heebie-jeebies.
I don't like rats because they have really long tails and sharp teeth.
I'm scared of spiders. I don't like snakes either.
Wolves, I don't really like, because they just howl.
That's quite a list, Harriet.
At least you don't get wolves in Britain any more.
Apart from at places like Wild Wood in Kent.
Yes, it's fair to say these two are not fans of all things furry.
In fact, they are much happier behind closed doors.
'So what have we cooked up for them today?'
-Ah, Georgina, Harriet, how are you doing?
-Georgina, you're the expert on wildlife, I hear.
-No, not really.
Oh, sorry. Wrong way round.
-Harriet, you're the expert on wildlife.
-Do you want to learn?
-Are you here to learn about British wildlife?
-Let's be having you.
-This is Georgina and Harriet.
Everything you've got in here is British wildlife, right?
That's right. Wild Wood's full of animals that live in our woodlands
and animals that USED TO live in our woodlands.
We are dedicated to restoring rare and extinct species
-back into our countryside.
-What are the girls doing first?
Today, we are going to let you give the wolves their breakfast.
-Are wolves British wildlife?
-We don't have wolves in this country.
But they used to live here about 350 years ago.
But they were made extinct.
Why were they made extinct?
It's all because we invented guns and we shot them all, unfortunately.
Oh. What a lovely ending to a story...
Ready, girls? Let's feed some wolves.
'Whoa, and there they are, wolves.
'It's hard to believe a creature like this once roamed free in Britain.'
-Who are these two?
-This is Nigel and Mishka.
I've known these two since they were puppies.
Are they tame?
These two are very tame to a certain extent.
These were hand-raised wolves.
So they like being cuddled. But they can also bite.
-Ah. Do you think they're hungry?
-They haven't eaten for three days.
-Girls, they must starving.
No need for the girls to worry,
as the wolves will be in a separate cage the whole time.
The first thing they need to do is pick up all the bits of manky meat,
otherwise the wolves' cage could get pretty grim.
A rotten job, you might say. And you'd be right.
These are the bones and the skin of the animals
that they've been eating over the last three days.
-It stinks. Can you smell it?
Wolves may seem scary, but they are, in fact,
the same species as a pet dog.
What's more, they are very timid and attacks on humans are very rare.
Not sure that's any comfort to Harriet,
who's not howling mad about wolves.
Are they territorial?
That's how wolves live. They live in little territories.
A pack occupies a hunting territory.
They fiercely defend it against any other wolves. They'll have fights to the death.
'Whoa! They'd better get on with the task and get out of their territory!'
Right, the job now is pick up all these old bones
and that bit of old skin there.
We need to put it in this bin here.
So Georgina and Harriet have some bones to pick.
First, it's on with some protection. Then we're on to clearing the table.
But what was on the menu three days ago?
Urgh, slimy skin.
Wow, that was pretty smelly.
Urgh, I don't even want to know what that one is.
Well, they've cleaned up the carnage.
But how will the girls do when they have to fix up a fresh meaty treat?
'Back at the wildlife rescue centre in Surrey,
'sisters Poppy and Josie are getting to grips
'with their first wild encounter...'
Grab a mealworm.
'..feeding bats a gruesome, grubby treat.'
And just chop the head off.
-It's still moving!
-It still wiggles a bit, but not to worry!
'This might look mean, but it stops bats and mealworms from being hurt.'
If there are any mealworms watching this,
we apologise for these scenes.
'Now it's Josie's turn.'
-Would YOU stay still?
-I think that's probably enough now. Hazel?
-OK. I'll bring the bats over.
Come and have some breakfast.
-Is it smaller than you thought?
-Yes, I thought it'd be, like, big.
What kind of bats are these, Hazel?
These are pipistrelles, which is the smallest bat in this country.
Mm-hm. What's their lifespan?
They actually live for an incredibly long time
for such a small creature. Pipistrelles can go up to 11 years.
Some of the bigger ones, like the greater horseshoe bat,
go up to almost 30 years.
-Girls, what's it like for you?
-Is it good?
It's giving it a good munch there.
It looks like he's gorged himself. Don't you think, Hazel?
Yeah, he's had plenty.
They're ready to burn off that food by having a good flap.
-He's ready to go!
-Let's do it. Pop the tools down. Let's move on.
'After a nice feed,
'these bats love to stretch their wings.
'Bats can carry nasty diseases,
'so if you ever see one injured and lying around,
'don't touch it. Ask an adult to call an animal rescue centre.'
Their navigation is incredible, not bumping into anything.
How does he know where he's going?
They use echolocation. It emits a really high-pitched squeak,
which then bounces off the object and back to its hearing.
'Bats have developed this superhero hearing
'so they can listen out for things in the dark.'
You can't hear the squeak, can you? You can't hear it at all.
-But bats can hear each other's?
-Girls, what do you think?
Still scared of them?
No. I don't think so.
'Wow! That's two girls who didn't have a clue about wildlife
'who are suddenly batty about bats.
'But how will the girls manage when they help sort out a sickly swan?'
Ooh, he's pooed.
He pooed in the blanket.
Georgina and Harriet are about to give the wolves a tasty treat
at the wildlife sanctuary in Kent.
Ready? Look at that! Fresh meat.
Ah, stunned silence from the chefs.
No let-up on a job like this,
cos somebody's ready for their breakfast.
You've got to put the meat down. Just drop it there.
That's it. And I'll put this one there.
Let's get out of the cage, and then we can let the wolves in. Come on.
This lever here pulls the trap door open
and allows the wolves to get their food.
So it's time to open the trap door.
One, two, three and pull!
As hard as you can. That's it. Look, here come the wolves.
They're a bit scared.
What will the wolves think of the girls' hard work?
Which do you think they'll go for? Oh, look, it's a bit of shoulder.
He's using his canines to rip the meat off the bone.
What they really want is the marrow that's inside the bones,
to get all the vitamins.
That's like sweeties for the wolves, the best bit.
That one there has just weed on that bit of meat.
'Well, yes, he's weed all over the meat to say, "That bit is mine."
'And yes, I don't think anyone else will take it.'
Thanks, girls, you've done a great job.
The wolves are enjoying their breakfast,
so let's find the next thing to do.
The girls have been welcomed at the wolves' enclosure,
but how will they rate when they meet a very rare rodent?
-It's not scary at all.
-Do you want to have a stroke?
'Now it's time to see if I can trick Dick into a stinking cage clean-up.'
You have to pick an envelope, any envelope.
They all contain important tasks to do within these four walls.
Four of them are utterly brilliant jobs,
but one is a horrible, horrible job.
You may pick.
Ah, I've got a horrible, horrendous hedgehog hose down.
'Not sure my old friend realises he's been duped
'into the stinkiest job possible.'
I can't believe something so small smells so bad.
It's bringing tears to my eyes.
There's me thinking you were getting over emotional.
There you go, fella. A new blanket.
Do you know why these beasts are called hedgehogs?
Because they live in hedges?
Partly right, but also because they snuffle around like pigs.
Another name for a pig is hog, so hedge and hog.
Also like pigs, they like to sniff out their grub,
including such foods as caterpillars, slugs and mice.
'Ew! That's a lot of smelly hedgehogs.
'As long as he doesn't find out I completely stitched him up,
'everything will be fine.'
Katy, I've finished. It might've been horrible but I enjoyed it.
'What were the other challenges, Dom?'
Horrible horrendous hedgehog...
..horrible horrendous hedgehog... Horrible...
They're all the same!
Back at the Wild Animal Park, Georgina and Harriet
are doing their bit for British wildlife.
Next up they're helping endangered mammals.
The hundreds of cages here are home to water voles.
These rare rodents are really suffering
because they're losing their homes in the wild,
but also they have lots of predators including mink, owls and cats.
Have you heard of a water vole before?
They're sometimes called water rats or ratty.
I've heard you don't like rats. What about rats don't you like?
They carry disease and they bite.
There's a few key differences. They've got little ears.
They don't have big ears like rats,
and their tail has lots of fur on, not like a rat's.
'Not sure the girls are convinced, Peter.
'They're doing a brilliant job, but still aren't fans of wildlife.'
So, watery voles, girls.
Peter, a water vole may be a bit like a rat?
It is. They used to be known as water rats a long time ago.
Georgina won't like the sound of that! She doesn't like rats.
-Would you like to go in there, Georgina?
-Harriet, would you do it?
-Come on, get in.
What are we going to do with them?
We need to get inside and find them.
We take the straw out, find the little fellas,
then weigh them with special scales.
Harriet, please step forward. Brave girl.
First, Peter and Harriet clean out the dirty straw
to find the water voles.
There's one by me feet.
Found one. Another one.
Nice one, Harriet.
So all they need to do now is catch one.
Should be simple enough.
Smaller than you thought?
Phew, we got one!
There is a water vole.
Why have they got orange teeth?
The orange is an extra layer of enamel.
It's much harder than our teeth.
Their teeth are much sharper.
That allows them to gnaw bits of wood, crack open seeds,
and eat things like that.
And they're fast.
Oh, they're very fast. Of course, they have to be fast.
They get hunted by foxes and all kinds of things.
They're constantly being taken by other animals.
'Not only that, water voles have been eaten
'by the introduced American mink, which means they're very rare.'
See, it's not as scary as you thought. Do you want a stroke?
He's weighed to see if he's a healthy size
and checked for a microchip so he can be monitored in the wild.
How big do they get?
Only a little bit bigger than that one.
Some of the males are a bit bigger. But they don't get much bigger.
You're doing a fantastic job for the voles, Peter.
-Harriet, did you enjoy that?
Georgina, you weren't as scared as we thought. You stayed close by.
You're a tough girl.
'So he's big enough and has a chip in place.
'He's ready to be released.
'Great job, girls.'
'That's the water voles sorted,
'but how will the girls do when meeting their very big cousins?'
-It's quite cute.
Back in Surrey,
Poppy and Josie are about to help a swan who may have broken a leg.
The sanctuary's been looking after him
but he's showing no sign of recovery.
So it's time to see local vet, Jill.
Hi. This is Sidney the cygnet.
He's got a hurt leg.
-We were wondering if you could help.
Let's have a look at him.
'Sidney is around four months old,
'which is why he's grey and looks shabby.
'When he grows up he'll be a beautiful white swan.'
-Have you ever been this close to a swan, girls?
I have, but it was chasing me.
Yes, they can be quite vicious when they're older.
'So don't approach a swan if you see one.
'Right now poor old Sidney is far too busy feeling sorry for himself
'to be vicious to anybody. Jill the vet needs to find out why.'
Oh, there's a big bump here.
A really big swelling.
It's quite firm.
Have a feel of that. It almost feels like bone.
Oh, my gosh. That's a lot bigger.
He may have broken his leg,
and now he's got a nasty swelling.
So what we need to do is take an X-ray and go from there.
Are you OK?
'The girls are great vets' assistants.
'All is going well until...'
-Oh, he's pooed!
He pooed in the blanket.
'Nice. Now, because X-rays can be harmful,
'Poppy and Josie need to leave the room. Off you go, girls.
'The picture is taken
'and goes off to be developed like printing out your photos.'
Here's the X-ray.
'So, what can we see?'
You see Sidney sitting on the plate?
This is his neck and head, and this is the leg in question, OK?
This is his normal leg and this is the leg that's damaged.
You can see straightaway that unfortunately
he's broken the main bone in his leg.
His body is doing a good job of trying to heal it.
But he is going to be left with a limp
because this leg is about four centimetres smaller than the other.
What do we need to do next then?
Really he just needs time and recuperation to heal.
When he's fully functional he'll be released.
'It's good news for Sidney!
'And one of those beautiful moments that nothing can spoil...'
'Apart from Sidney pooing again.
'With an almost clean bill of health and not such a clean blanket, Sidney
'can head back to Harper Asprey to be looked after until he's well.
'Good work, girls.
'Join us later when Poppy and Josie get to release some dapper ducks
'back into the big, wild world.'
Back on there!
'First off, it's time to meet a very cute customer.'
Will you give me a hand with this deer taking it to its new home?
How very dare you. You know I've got a bad back.
You're always trying to pass the buck.
Very good, buck, male deer.
Do you want facts?
There are six different breeds of deer in Great Britain.
This Muntjac deer is the smallest,
and it's been brought over from China.
Georgina and Harriet, two girls who aren't too wild about wildlife,
are about to meet a massive rodent.
Sophie the vet has come to give Peter and the girls a hand
with very special new arrivals. The adult beavers have had babies.
With any luck they'll be part of a programme
to be released back into the wild.
We've got two young beavers, about three months old.
We're going to catch them up today, get a weight on them,
see if we can give them a quick health check
and get microchips into them so we can identify them later.
Did beavers used to live in this country?
Yeah, they were quite prolific.
In the 16th century they died out. There haven't been any since.
There's recently been reintroduction programmes, particularly in Scotland.
We're trying to reintroduce them into the natural wildlife.
It's an exciting time for beavers.
'Peter goes in to bag the beaver babes, called kits.'
'Beavers can chew their way through tree trunks.
'So Peter has to be very careful not to be bitten.'
Here we go.
'These big rodents were hunted out of Britain hundreds of years ago
'for their skins, to make hats.
'So it's great that people are now working hard to reintroduce them.'
Why do you release beavers into the countryside?
Because beavers burrow into river banks.
They create a habitat where rare water voles can live,
where butterflies and rare bird species, all those can live
and make homes in the area where the beaver have excavated.
It's vital to save our rarest wildlife
to have beaver back in the countryside.
'Wow! This helpful beaver is massive and it's just a baby.'
-It's quite cute.
Really soft fur.
-He would be. Do you think you'd be feisty if I picked you up?
Peter and Sophie weigh them to make sure they're putting on weight.
If they are, it means they are healthy. Good news all round.
5.2 is good at this stage.
Sophie gives the young beaver a chip that will help identify it
when it eventually swims free in the wild.
By running that scanner over the beaver,
we're checking that the chip is in place and reading properly.
That allows us at later dates to identify
the animals if they require treatment
or if we need to release them back into the wild.
The beavers will soon be on their way home.
Who knows, you might well see them in the countryside near you.
-You like the beavers, girls?
This morning you didn't really want to look after British wildlife.
You never took much interest in it.
-What do you think now?
-It's been exciting.
Would you like a job looking after these ratty rodents?
I don't like the ratty ones, but beavers are all right, yeah.
You've learned about British wildlife
and you might get a job out of it too. Nice one. Do you like that?
Brilliant! We made it.
Poppy and Josie are back at the Surrey Wildlife Rescue Centre
with Sidney the swan, who has a poorly leg.
That looks great.
Sidney's back in your care now and looks happy to be here.
He'll be with us for a couple of weeks on pain killers.
Once he's fit and healthy, he'll be released into the wild.
Releasing birds is something that you do a lot?
Yes, we have mallard ducks that need releasing today,
if the girls want to help.
-They can help with that?
-They may get wet.
-Do you fancy that? Do you want to herd some ducks?
-Let's herd some ducks.
You have to be nice and calm.
'They have come in for different reasons.
'But they are all healthy and ready to leave here.
'Oh, a bit too ready to leave.'
No, back on there. Come on.
OK, forget it. Just pick him up.
-Dom's got one.
-I've got one here.
-Don't be scared of them.
-You have got to have lots of confidence.
We are trying to put the last one in and two of them have run out.
I think that's remedied now.
-Is that the last one?
We should have seven in there.
One, two, three, four, five, six, seven.
Good work, well done. That's seven ducks successfully
boxed and ready to go, which means there's only one thing left to do.
Let's get these ducks home.
This is a big moment for the ducks, who spent a long time recuperating.
So it's great that they're going to be out splashing around the pond
where they belong once more.
Girls, very exciting moment for you. Are you happy to be doing this?
-We have seven little ducks who are dying to get home.
Here they all are.
-Say bye-bye, ducks.
-Shall we get them to the water?
-Right, down here?
Lovely. So you ready, girls?
-On the count of three. One, two, three... Go!
There you go.
One, two, three, four, five, six, seven. Well done, ducks!
So you came here with no experience of animals in any way.
At the end of one day you have fed bats,
looked after a cygnet and released ducks.
How has that been as a whole experience?
-It's been quite good, yeah.
Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd
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Josie and Poppie fix up a swan's leg and get some bats in a flap when they give them a wiggly treat. Harriet and Georgina meet the rarest of British wildlife when they help some wolves wolf down a feast. And Dick gets a bit spiky in the hedgehog hospital.