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Winterwatch 2022 episode 4

Winterwatch 2022 episode 4

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Winterwatch 2022 episode 4: Not everything heads into hibernation in winter, and Chris Packham and Michaela Strachan look at the season’s movers and shakers. In fact, with our ever-changing climate, there are some animals we may be surprised to see out at this time of the year. Over in Northern Ireland, Megan McCubbin looks at some of the mammals that call WWT Castle Espie home, and Iolo Williams never tires of Mull’s wild offerings, from otters to eagles, pine martens and owls. It’s a wildlife haven that just keeps giving.



 

 

Springwatch, Autumnwatch and Winterwatch, sometimes known collectively as The Watches, are annual BBC television series which chart the fortunes of British wildlife during the changing of the seasons in the United Kingdom. The programmes are broadcast live from locations around the country in a primetime evening slot on BBC Two. They require a crew of 100 and over 50 cameras, making them the BBC’s largest British outside broadcast events. Many of the cameras are hidden and operated remotely to record natural behaviour, for example, of birds in their nests and badgers outside their sett.

Springwatch begins on the Spring Bank Holiday and is broadcast four nights each week for three weeks. After the success of the first Springwatch in 2005, the BBC commissioned a one-off special, Autumnwatch, which became a full series in 2006. Winterwatch began in 2012, broadcast in January or February.

 

Winterwatch 2022 episode 4

 

European pine marten

The European pine marten (Martes martes), also known as the pine marten or the European marten, is a mustelid native to and widespread in Northern Europe. It is classified as Least Concern on the IUCN Red List. It is less commonly also known as baum marten, or sweet marten.

In Great Britain, the species was for many years common only in northwestern Scotland. A study in 2012 found that martens have spread from their Scottish Highlands stronghold, north into Sutherland and Caithness and southeastwards from the Great Glen into Moray, Aberdeenshire, Perthshire, Tayside, and Stirlingshire, with some in the Central Belt, on the Kintyre and Cowal peninsulas and on Skye and Mull. The expansion in the Galloway Forest has been limited compared with that in the core marten range. Martens were reintroduced to the Glen Trool Forest in the early 1980s and only restricted spread has occurred from there. This may be due to ongoing persecution and trapping by local gamekeepers.

In England, pine martens are extremely rare, and long considered probably extinct. A scat found at Kidland Forest in Northumberland in June 2010 may represent either a recolonisation from Scotland, or a relict population that has escaped notice previously. There have been numerous reported sightings of pine martens in Cumbria, however, it was not until 2011 that concrete proof – some scat that was DNA-tested – was found.

In July 2015, the first confirmed sighting of a pine marten in England for over a century was recorded by an amateur photographer in woodland in Shropshire. Sightings have continued in this area, and juveniles were recorded in 2019, indicating a breeding population. In July 2017, footage of a live pine marten was captured by a camera trap in the North York Moors in Yorkshire. In March 2018 the first ever footage of a pine marten in Northumberland was captured by the Back from the Brink pine marten project.

 

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Winterwatch 2022 episode 4
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Winterwatch 2022 episode 4: Not everything heads into hibernation in winter, and Chris and Michaela look at the season’s movers and shakers.