Episode 1 Autumnwatch Unsprung

Episode 1

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Now it is a very minor aspiration of mind to bring a degree of


sartorial elegance to the world of natural history. I'm afraid on this


occasion I'm going to have to compromise might ethics because I'm


really need something is going to make me feel like a host of a


slightly anarchic programme. Do you know what? I feel and in a plan


coming out, I could release something from the 70s, something


really nasty, because this is We are talking about half-an-hour


of ecological and a key on your television. I have got jacket and a


keep going on. What do you think? will join in with my sartorial


twist. I have a special Unsprung slippers. Look at that! On they


lovely? They are from India. Who have we got in the house? We have


our audience. Did you enjoy the main show? They have to say that.


We have got of course, it would not beat Unsprung without it, level-


headed joke. And of course she is waiting right now for your comments.


Get in contact. Or just. How do they get in contact? On our Web


page. You can go to face Buck. will join us as well. Because it is


later, it is booms. It is booze, not toffee apples. Did you get your


tooth? It has a hair on it now. doesn't go with your code. Nothing


goes with that code. Any Questions? Anything coming? We have some


quick-fire questions. Mike writing Essex. He sent a picture in. --


Mike Wright in Essex. It is a It has unusual, -- coloration. He


says it is an aberration. What is it? It appears to have the brown


colouring that you would expect and the spots. Now, normally you might


think there would be Scales, those things that give the Butterfly and


the moth its colouring, can have been knocked off and dislodged.


Sometimes that makes them look slightly frayed. This is


symmetrical. The fact the four wings are in good condition means


this is an aberration. Mike Wright in Essex. I think he probably


picked it up. No, he didn't. He has been watching butterflies for 50


years. He is no novice. He knows his stuff. That was spotted in


August. Has anyone else seen that? No. Would you like another


question? Terry knows that the Victorians painted kitchen walls


blue because they thought flies did not like the colour. Is it true? Do


flies dislike the colour blue? Can they see colour? That is a very


good question. Interesting. From me, or him? Both of you. Flies have


very different eyes. They are made of different lenses. What we are


not sure about with compound eyes is how they actually perceive the


world. Do they in their brains make that information into one image, or


do they have hundreds of images that they can process at the same


time? As for do flies disliked the colour blue, I have absolutely, I'm


proud to say, I have absolutely no idea. Lots of people have got in


contact about ladybirds because ladybirds are pouring into our


homes at this time of year and they say the best way to stop coming the


minister paint your house purple. Honestly, I have heard that, that


ladybirds hate the Color Purple. Imagine the Clash, ladies --


ladybirds and purple. Anyone tried it? Painting the kitchen blue? You


would have thought someone would have painted that. I wonder if they


can see blue. He will end up with a purple and blue house. A disaster.


Other people like purple and white, I like blue and white. There is


another message. We visited Westonbirt this weekend as well as


admiring the autumn scene I think I've read that the changing colour


can deter certain insect attacks. Did I imagine that, or could there


be something in it? This is one of two series that have been


postulated to explain why leaves turn red. Because the red colour


comes from substances called and the signings, which the plants pump


into the lead before they drop off. There has to be a good reason. Some


people think it is to prevent the sunlight destroying the chlorophyll,


others think it is to stop insect pests away. There is some evidence


to suggest -- there is some evidence to suggest that less


aphids land on red leaves. It may be the case. Later in the series we


will address this when we see more read him at Westonbirt. A good


question, we will get to it in detail later. That was a really


good answer. He is amazing. He does not see these questions before we


fire them at him. He needs appreciation. Can we quickly do the


tea-cosy? What is the Lady's name? Lynne. Lynn, you are amazing. She


delivers these fabulous, the ceremonial change of tea pot. That


is the spring and summer one. This is the autumn one. It isn't it


beautiful? It has a courts. It is gorgeous. I could almost put that


I can't believe that got a round of applause! Do you have the quizzed


trade? Let's clear some room. at the toffee apples. These are all


items which I have collected myself, some of which were secreted under


my bed in a box many years ago. They are all connected to woodland,


so the first one is this. You have to identify which BIRT did this


feather belong to? This is the letter A. You can go on the website


and tell us the answer. Found in woodland, this is exhibit A. This


is exhibit become a slightly more Look at the texture of this ward,


note the absence of something and also look at either end. This was


found in a British woodland but can only have been found in British


woodland relatively recently. we ask, don't say. Has anyone any


ideas about the stick? Yes, we have some bright sparks in the audience


tonight. I have saved the past -- the best until last. I can tell you


from the note in my small pot here that these here, item C, are some


items that I discovered on July 1st, 1984. I found them... What is your


house like?! It is very ordered! I found them in space side, by a


lough. They are quite fragile, very precious. Look at that, in space


side, Scotland, 1984, which is not relevant to be honest. The audience


are not -- are fascinated. There is a fingernail! This is the further,


the, the stick, which has been handled by something that could


only recently have been found in the UK, and some vintage material


here of great repute from 1984, found in a Scottish woodland.


Answers on the website. There are photos of people want to check them.


I think we're going to see a video that has been sending out. Can you


tell me who has ended in? No, there is silence. Let's look at this,


Maureen Nichols, thank you for sending this extraordinary bit of


behaviour, have a look. What is it I am afraid to say it is beating


bat. It is awful, actually. It is getting dark now. It has discovered


a source of protein. I think it will destroy the whole colony.


are smart birds and once they find a source of food they will go back


to it until they have exhausted it. We could not see, it was quite


difficult to see, but they are small bats. Perhaps pipistrelle bat.


They are emerging from a roost. It is nailing them as they come out.


Have you seen that before? Never mind the Gulf. I am with the bats


on this one. Have you seen it before? No, never. Other animals to


catch bats. Cats, unfortunately, will catch them as they come out. I


have heard reports of sparrowhawks taking them regularly. Sparrowhawks


often take bats. It is fun to see that, if anyone sees anything like


that please send it in and let us know about it. You keep talking


because I want to see what is going on outside. Oh no, I have my lovely


slippers on. How is it going? going good. This is. This is booze,


isn't it? Those toffee apples were difficult for my teeth. What have


we got brewing? One of your great expertise is is making boos. I am


doing Yarrow beer. This is Yarrow. A lot of gardeners have it. I'm


also doing and Rosemary beer as well. They are two of my favourite


beers, delicious. Fantastic. You are blowing them up now. Have we


got anything we can taste of yours? Weekend to try some autumn flower


champagne. Autumn flower champagne. This is hedgerow vodka. Has it


really got vodka in it? Have a taste for stoppages a liqueur. If I


call it hedge row liqueur. It is a shy little hedgerow vodka or but a


good traveller. That is strong. Let's go. That is absolutely lovely.


Delicious. Not too much of it. Quite strong. We will get more


later. When are we going to have the beer? It will not be ready for


ages, will it? It will take some time. I'm coming back in a later


showed to finish the beer. Brilliant, on the telly, have this


-- have something every year that matures. We will go back to Chris


and Michaela while we tried these interesting things. I love the way


he has trashed his slippers. I love the way he has trashed his slippers.


Ball away from India. Superb. One of the other highlights in


Autumnwatch is the vast number of photographs that you sent a Flickr


group. By going to the office, sit down and look through hundreds of


them because they are really super pictures. Let's look at some of


What have we got? Richard has sent us this photograph of a hummingbird


hawk moth. It has tried to drink the nectar and it has got stuck. It


has pulled off the flower. Look at this. Sometimes they get stuck.


This prevents the proboscis from disappearing into the moth and it


will die from Deeo hybrid -- from dehydration. Oh no! The composition


is unusual but we won't get into the technical details. When it


comes to photographs we are not snobs. They don't have to be


beautiful. We want them to be interesting. This is... Ruined! All


away from India and they are ruined! Sorry. We like your


photographs if they are interesting, and usual. It is the technical


excellence, but is not what we are after, we want to see what you have


got and what you are enjoying in the countryside. I never thought


you would -- I never thought I would hear you say that. It says it


in the script here. Frankly I am a terrible photographic snob. There


is another picture as well, a humming bird picture. A hummingbird


hawk. You can seek. You can see the pollen. Again, look at the pollen


on the proboscis here. The whole point of the moth, when this visits


pollination. It is allowing the plant effectively to move to the


genes that are present and the pollen. It is another fascinating


photograph although the composition is a little unusual. CAB I show you


would Hummingbird photo? No, we can't. They do look exactly like


hummingbirds. They built around. Wait a minute. Oh dear. What do you


What do you think of this photo, Chris? In fact, you were there.


you know, I have managed to expunge that from my mind. One sensible


thing, these moths are migrants, that come to the UK. Increasing


numbers are coming. They have even gone as far north as Scotland.


Butterfly Conservation are doing a survey. You can get the details


survey. You can get the details from our website, to take part in


the hummingbird hawk moth survey. We even think there might be


breeding in this country now. don't know if you two got into this


story which was in the news a few weeks ago, about those four little


squirrel orphans. They got caught in a storm, and they were orphaned,


and there were taken in by a wildlife centre in Northumberland.


And we kick actually going to speak to someone from there in a minute.


First, let's have a look at those squirrels, they are so sweet. I


think they were only about four weeks old when they were brought in.


So, they have been taken in and looked after, and I think they're


doing pretty well. It really caught the imagination of the British


public. It was in the newspapers and everything. And silly Eileen,


who has been looking after them. We can hear from her now. Can you hear


us? And we can just about hear you. What have you got on your


What have you got on your shoulder?! That is my version of a


parrot. How are they doing? They're doing great. They are really well.


They are now eating everything I can collect, from hawthorn berries,


rosehips X Factor. -- rose hips etc. They're very well camouflaged


against your hair. We can see one of them on your neck, but where are


the other three? There is one over here. That's amazing. Can I just


tell you that we have had them out for an hour to try and calm them


down. It has so worked! Obviously, you have looked after them really


well, they're doing great, but what is going to happen to them?


plan is that they're to young to release, being hand reared, as they


are, so they need to have what we call a soft release. The plan is


that they were going to a pen for the winter, where they will be fed


and looked after. Over the winter... LAUGHTER there will be fed and


looked after in a red squirrel area. Then in late spring, when there is


a plentiful supply of food, we will open the door and allow them to


come or go as they please. But there will still be food put out


for them every day. Eventually, off they will go. You have got a good


red squirrel population near to where you are. We have a lot of


squirrels in Northumberland. He's trying to bury a nut down my back.


Sounds painful. Thank you so much for joining us this evening. Good


luck with them, I hope they have huge success as they go forward


into surviving in the wild. anybody noticed that her hair


matched the squirrels? Beautifully, I could hardly see the squirrels.


She has gone now, it is OK. Sticking with squirrels, I have got


a real treat for you. We have got a little orphan squirrel in the


studio. Christine, bring it in. This is not a red squirrel. Just


take a look at this little cutie. It is an albino grey squirrel. It


is so sweet. I have never seen one of these before. Have you ever seen


one of these before at your rescue centre? No, this is the first one


we have come across. He got beaten up, didn't he? Yes, he was found by


a lady in a graveyard. He had been beaten up by other grey squirrels,


because he looks different. And also, he had a bit of dried blood


around his nose. We think because of his eyesight not being so good


that he may have misjudged his jump from a tree. I did not know that,


so, albinos do not have very good eyesight? No, and also their


hearing can be affected. How old is he? About three months. He had some


bottle-feeding when he first came in. He's still being topped up as a


treat at the moment. But he still likes his nuts and everything.


will happen to him? We are not 100% sure yet. At the moment they're


going to give him a cheque at the vet's. If he can be viable in the


wild, then he might be able to go back into a population with other


albinos. We think there is a population around the Havant area


of albinos. I have seen them in Waterlooville, relatively close to


Havant. They appear for a couple of years, and then disappear. And then


a couple of years later, they appear again. Obviously, the genes


are in the population. Thank you so Jo, anyone getting in on the quiz?


Yes, a few people have got it right. Nearly 300 entries. Shall I tell


you who got it right? The first three were Craig, Janika. This was


the easiest of all of them, I thought, this feather, it was from


a tawny owl. This one is a bit more difficult, the stick, but the park


had been removed, you can see some teeth marks, and also some clean


teeth marks here, this has been handled by a be for. -- beaver.


This lady seems to know a lot... it vegetable or animal? It is


vegetable that has been processed by an animal. It must be one of


your Specials, then. Possibly pine Marten? No. Anyone else? This fine


specimen is actually the excrement that has been produced by Kate


Bekele, the large grass species which lives in the Caledonian


forest. -- caper caillie. It produces deposits like this. And


you can see little bits of pine needle in there. And that has been


in your house since 1984. certainly has, I have got a whole


collection of these sorts of things. If you want to pop round, I know


you have been round before, but you should have said, I want to see


your poo. You told me you once had a hornets nest in your bedroom.


one point I had five active wasps' nest so on coat-hangers, so I could


move them around and put them where I wanted. Did you have a girlfriend


at this time? Well, of a sort, yes. Can I just say, he had a bunch of


Queens in his bedroom. We have had some questions coming in. Andy has


had a grey squirrel on the golf course, burying his nuts. And what


about this weekend? We have got quite a few things to do. I will go


over to the map. We have near Newport, a RSPB reserve. But you


need to contact them before you go. On Sunday, there is a nature


reserve in Hertfordshire which has got a Wildlife Watch. And there are


plenty more events on our things to do website. You can search by


postcode. It will find events near you. As we know, Sunday is going to


be a better day, weather-wise. And so that would be a good thing to go


to. Very important, but your voles boot some, most important of all,


take the kids. Take your grandchildren. If you have not got


grandchildren, grab some off the street. It is essential that we get


young people back in touch with wildlife. I cannot believe you have


got that jacket on still. I forgot I had it on. I have got some


questions here, this one - what is going on here? Does the buzzard


just have a very large crop, or could it be something else? It is a


buzzard, and it has got a very large crop. That's what I just said.


I'm sorry. Are you planning on staying? The thing is, obviously,


if a bird gorges a WRAP tour, like this, it has worked long and hard


to get the food, it will eat until basically it cannot eat any more,


so it is not unusual to see them like this. However, they can get


diseases which caused a gaseous build-up, and they can swell up out


of proportion. This one is particularly large. How does that


gas come out, then? Do you have to ask that? Seriously, it can be a


fatal disease. It is one of the symptoms of the disease. I had a


kestrel once which had this fungal infection of the gut, and sadly, it


killed my little kestrel, and this was one of the symptoms.


chickens are currently eating cabbage. When I go into the run to


collect the eggs, oh, my Lord. Listen, we have really come to the


end of Autumnwatch Unsprung, but can we bring in Andy, because I


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