Episode 5 Autumnwatch Unsprung

Episode 5

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It's time for Unspring. Now, Sun spring is a dynamic progress, you


never know exactly what is going to happen, it's completely unscripted.


So I don't think it's a programme that you want to introduce with


jazz or the blues. What we need to introduce Sun spring is a bit of


I tell you what, Chris, I think the glam rock has got our audience


moved. Say hello, audience. ALL: Hey. And amongst them is Richard


Taylor-Jones, who will join us. And the lady who produced the programme


you've just seen. Well done! So get your questions, anything you want


to say to us into Level headed. Live. What next? We must do an


official change ever of our tea cosy. We have a special tea cosy.


Look at that. What a work of art! What species is that, Chris? Can


you tell? I'm going to with hold judgment on that. We have a treat


here, because Lynn, hello. Here is the real person. She is the one who


makes these fantastic tea kosies for us and has done for years.


You have to put the tail up. It's beautiful. And you are going to


Croatia for us, live. This is live...An Apple cosy. And we'll cut


through to her to see how it is coming on throughout the programme.


Live Croatia, whatever next! We're at Slimbridge so let's start


with some goosey-type of questions. A picture from Ian W, why are these


geese hanging upside down. They really are. These geese are


whiffling. What they do to lose altitude very fast is basically not


fly! They flip on to their backs and it makes them entirely unaero-


dynamic and they fall from the sky. So if they're trying to land


quickly, to get away from a predator, or join their friends in


a small space, they will basically whiffle and turn themselves upside


down and tumble to the ground. you ever seen one of them get it


ronk? No, but I have - wrong? No, but I have seen one fly into things.


I saw a goose take off and hit a Impala directly in the backside, it


was rather ignominios end to the bird.


And don't forget that many birds can fly into your patio windows, so


do put stickers on them to help prevent that. And this watcher says


do Canada geese never, never shut up? Well, they have to communicate


with one another and when they're flying in the typical V pattern the


one at the front is doing more of the work because it's creating an


air flow to make it easier for the others to fly. So obviously the


poor goose at the front can't do all the work all the time, so they


do swap over so they have to communicate. But whether they do it


all the time, I don't know. One of the things they're worried about is


losing moisture when they're migrating they don't want to lose


moister. And if you're always hanging....! What are they saying


to each other?, "Your turn N." they don't want to lose their


youngsters, otherwise they'd be doomed. Keep your questions coming


in. It's quiz time. This week we've been very inventive, I think.


Because we have some wild foul which we've transformed into sort


of stained-glass images. You've got to try and guess what this abstract


image of a bird is. This one we're going to tell you. Here it is, now


watch it transform. And it will turn into the barnacle goose.


So these are part of the quiz. This is A. Try and identify this bird.


What do you reckon audience? Don't say. Did you get it? ALL: Yes.


is bird B. Slightly harder? Here is I have to say, this is the first


quiz that I think I've got all three right. If you sit at home


every week, like I do thinking, "I don't know any of those" you might


be able to get all of these. Last week, we were asked about giant


spiders. We're not coming to that yet. No, it comes later in our


running order, but we're telling you now. But we don't want to scare


all those people who don't like spiders off.


Now. Our live animals today are hedgehogs. But we'll come to them


in a minute. Now, we have been a little bit light on videos from you


at home up to now. We really, really want them. And all of a


sudden they've come flooding in. Let's have a look at some. This is


from John. It's a deer. What is going on? 4 And there you


just saw something jump up, and he's rushing around. Let's see what


it was. And it is a...fox! And not


surprising, the fox. And it had a youngster there, in the grass, and


it was very worried about that fox coming in and doing that youngster


a bit of mischief. That was very nice footage. Thank


you, John. This is from Derek. Oh that my


garden was like this! Have you seen anything like this,


Chris? These are goldfinches. They have become an increasingly common


garden bird. They're taking advantage of garden feed,. Look at


the lawn, it's covered and the tree too. There were about 80 to 100


there. Chris, do you remember this week we met someone who said, "Why


don't I have any birds in my garden this year? They've all gone there!


I think he lives near the countryside and they've been out


foraging, and they've suddenly discovered those feeders and


flocked in. Do they normally come in pairs,


frinches.. I had two in my garden. They were sitting either side of


the feed are. Very spiritual. But they didn't last for long,


because a great big sparrowhawk came in and got one!


David Bradley, this is curious, has sent us video of an animal that it


is hard to get exited about, but these are fresh-water shrimp.s.


They're climbing up a trickle of fresh water. And it had rained and


this pond had filled up and the shrimps were migrating up to it.


Theories. Firstly, they want to colonise new areas. So they could


be moving just to get into that new area. They might be moving from


stagnant water, with not a lot of oxygen, into fresh water full of


oxygen to keep them happy. It was fascinating. I've never seen


anything like it. Keep them coming in, they're brilliant.


And how are you getting on, Lynn? That is quick! But it won't fit my


head. I think it's time to bring in our


special guest, Richard Taylor-Jones. And I've brought you this. Thank


you very much. That's to stop me coughing. You've been a very busy


man because not only have you been doing seals, but all the other


guest presenter films. Yes, it's been a busy few weeks. There's an


update about the mystery seals. I wanted to know how many were


there, because nobody seems to know. We did a survey and it is reckoned


150 are there, which is the most recorded around the sands. And I


spoke to Brett Lewis, who has studied the seals for a number of


years. He thinks part of the issue is that more and more wind farms


are going up off-shore, around the Kent coast and those wind farms


could be acting as no take zones, so there are more fish and the


seals are benefiting from the more fish. So, wind farms can cause


problems, but it is an interesting take on it. It would be nice to


have a bof reason to champion - a positive reason to champion


sustainable energy. A couple of questions. Emma says,


"Why do seals lift up their heads and tails when basking. I knew


somebody would ask me this. don't know! If - I've been


Googleing all day. And the best I can come up with is that they're


really happy. But seals do get really, really hot so they want to


expose as much of their surface area to the wind to cool out and by


bending, as much as possible is exposed to the winds. But they do


like it hot, because they come out of the water to get more warmth to


digest their food. A lot of the reasons why we have so many grey


seals in this country is because we have so many islands so they're


protected from predators and humans. And it's there that they come out


of the water to do their digestion. We've been sent a video of a seal


that maybe went to sleep, perhaps to digest. And then had a nasty


surprise! Oh, dear, what happened to all the


water! He's gone to sleep and the tide's gone out. Poor thing. I'd


like to report that he did get off safely. It was a rather beautiful


belly flop. We've all done that. Fallen asleep somewhere strange.


Now, what next? Next week, we are chasing whales. It's weather and


timing. So you haven't found them yet? No, no. You have a programme


next week, you have to have something in it? And the highlight?


I think one of the best things we've done is bring eels to the


forefront. It's been a story that we've all talked about for years,


and it was finding a way to get the story on. Well, thank you very much.


You've done a great job with the guest presenters. And thank you for


finding the grey seals. We've been sent a picture. Chris


loves this. It's from Thomas, aged six. Thank you very much. It's a


buzzard, obviously. Thomas has sent a question too. He


says, "What is the loudest bird call?." Yes, loudest. We had a


dispute about this. I went for nightingale, because they are


really loud when they chuck out their song. One of our researchers


has dug up some facts. Urban noises can force nighting gales to sing


loudy to overcome them, so they break European rules! They can


elevate the volume of their song ten times to drown out the noise of


traffic. European laws have been against exposing workers to more


than 08decibels, but one singing at 90decibels has been recorded.


There's different types of sound This south is not about volume,


it's about distance travelled. And the very low frequencies of that


sound, it's like elephants using infrasound, it carries a further


distance. And these birds want to get the sound through all the reed


beds to communicate with other birds. So, the loudest, I've always


thought was the nightingale, but if you know better, do let us


know..Now It's time to crawl on the floor and look at these wonderful


hedgehogs. And bring in Annie. These come from the hedgehog


hospital which is very near to Slimbridge. It is at this time of


year we have to worry about them. It's Bonfire Night this weekend,


and they start to go into hibernation. But they're not doing


well, are they? No, they're in trouble at the moment. The latest


survey in June, in the 1950s there were 36 million in the UK and that


has now dropped, really worryingly to 1.5 million. That's a dramatic


drop! And there are so many reasons for that drop. One of the main


reasons is the second litter. The second litter is being pushed very


late because the first litter is being pushed late because of global


warming, I believe. No April showers or food for them to put


weight on. And unfortunately, the second litter - these little guys,


there's no way they could hibernate. But if you look, I've brought a few


along today. You'd probably look at this


hedgehog and think it could hibernate. This would be 400 grams


and this won't hibernate. It would die. What will happen is all of


these I've brought. I'll have to open the box. Oh, look, it's full


of them. Wow! This little one here is 300 grams. You'd look at it, but


it's not until you weigh them. If you see a hedgehog out, day or


night. If you could put garden gloves on, they're not going to


bite you. They're lovely. Weigh them in grams and if they're under


600 grams you need to go either to the Hedgehog Preservation Society,


where there are carers all around the UK. Or you need to contact a


local wildlife rescue. What can people do? We've had a lot of


people asking if they should still be feeding them at this time?


please. Keep feeding them, because A, you could collect them as well.


Meal worms, and biscuits. They don't have to hibernate, but they


probably will after four or five frosts when the food is in de clin,


but I have known hedgehogs not hibernate if they are continuing


being fed. It's only a cold spell that would drive them into


hibernation. This is the only one that is up to weight. All the


others would die if they hibernated. Thank you very much for coming in,


and it's a big subject which we don't have time to cover. But there


is a lot of information on our website. And never, never feed them


milk. And the bonfires. The only safe way to have a bonfire is in


the morning and make it, don't threev there. Because they do nest


in them. Now, to an animal that is not


cuddly at all. We asked you for pictures of giant spiders. At this


time of the year, they will come into your house because it's warm


and dry, because they love that kind of environment. We have some


photographs that people have sent This extraordinary picture here.


Look at the size of it. Here is a ruler that the photographer has


placed in the bottom here. And this is 6cm down there. That's a monster.


In fact, that was such a monster, Mike, we realised thaw must have


increased the size of it. So we don't want cheating!


But he was open about it. Now, we wanted you to give some


scale for the spider. I love this! So, your cat. We don't know how big


the cat is! I'm worried about the spider This next one. These are


slightly more sensible. You can see that this couple of spiders have


had rulers put beside them. That's the sort of thing we're after What


about this one! This is taken by Jamie. This is a pint glass


covering a spider. And I think we all agree that that is a monster,


monster spider Now, we put together a graph of the results that we've


had so far. I like this. This is a graph of distinction, to


be honest. We have body length against entire length, that's the


span of the legs. We have a couple of mini ones, and


a mass in that range, but at the moment there is one spider. That's


Jamie Barnet. Oh, so that's the pint spider, which is the biggest


one so far. I think one of them has been measured at 15.2cm leg-to-leg.


That is enormous. This one? another one, but it was squashed!


I think it was fine! But mine, I've been speeding mine up and


eventually it will make an appearance, once it is bigger.


you fattening it for Christmas? That's OK. So, folks if you have


spiders you can fatten up or exaggerate their size, we'd like to


see them. We want larger spiders to keep sending in the images, and a


degree of accuracy would be appreciated. Now, the quiz answers


Yes, Level headed. Most people have got them right. One viewer got them


right, even though he's colour blind. That's pretty good.


So, let's reveal the answers. 4 A Canada goose!


Let's ask the audience. ALL: Teal. The notable green And a golden


bottom. I worry about you! And the last bird is this one.


I won't even ask the audience because they've been swimming


around behind us all evening. If anyone at the wild foul and Wetland


Trust doesn't know what this is, you're fired!


It's a shell duck. And Chris, one for you. Can you, Chris...Oh,


at that. Can we reveal what this is? Beautiful! It's the lads.


Beautiful! Brilliant. Right, now you may remember, Pauline came in


last week with that little barn owl. Fantastic news, at least two,


possibly three chicks have been found and those people got in


contact with her, so that little barn owl now has friends. We wanted


to get a picture of them kudgesed up together, but haven't been able


to yet. So a good story for that one. Now, we are doing a Christmas


special. And this is where we want you to help us. We want you to


either really impress Chris with something special that you've got


wildlife-y, of course! Or ask him a question that might stump him. So


if you've got any unusual feathers, bones or a really, really


interesting question, please send it into us.. Yes, we're going have


Chris's Christmas grotto. If you've found something that you think is


absolutely brilliant, a covetious little object, a skull, a feather,


a pellet, it could even be....poo! If you have some super poo, we'd


like to see it, because we'd like to share your enthusiasm with the


nation. We never get through a programme without you saying poo;


Jan said she saw a buzzard swoop down into the garden and carry off


a live hedgehog. Sorry about that. As if they haven't got enough


problems. Is that usual? Well, hedgehog aren't palletable with all


those spines, so I would say it was highly unusual. And how would it


pick it up?. Now, I have to go to the map.


There is a whale fest and tomorrow there is an Autumnwatch wildlife


watch in bridge end. And there are grey and common seals at Blakely


Point. And there is a lot of information on the website. I


wonder what a whale fest is, that's interesting? They, it's a


celebration of all things in that family, so get a long to that.


Now, look at that. Television first! And that will fit in your


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