All New Autumnwatch 2012 - live on TV, Red Button and Online

Monday 1 October 2012, 11:51

Holly Spearing Holly Spearing Series Producer

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We're delighted to announce that Autumnwatch returns at the end of October with an exciting new format and location, planned to capture all the best wildlife action of autumn. As if that's not enough cause for celebration, Autumnwatch will be followed by the brand new live series, Winterwatch, in January.

Chris Packham, Michaela Strachan, Martin Hughes-Games and guests will be following all the wildlife stories as they happen, broadcasting live from our new location. And for the first time, Autumnwatch will be based in Scotland, at one of the best places to showcase the beauty and drama of this dynamic and diverse season. There'll be 4 live shows on BBC TWO from Tuesday 30th October until Friday 2nd November, with Autumnwatch Unsprung on Friday, and our live cameras will be on BBC Red Button and the Web around the clock.

Our New Location
So what about Autumnwatch's new location? We'll be based at the Aigas Field Centre, in the beautiful Scottish Highlands. It's one of the finest areas in the country to experience autumn wildlife, and we'll be right at the heart of the action. Nestled in a wooded glen and surrounded by dramatic mountains, Aigas is home to some of the UK's most iconic animals, from highland specialists to familiar garden wildlife. In the forest, there are red squirrels, pine martens, red deer and crested tits. Birds of prey cruise over the moorland, while foxes and small mammals hunt in the undergrowth, and a loch is home to a family of beavers. We can't wait to show you!

The cameras are being prepared as we speak and with many mammals only active at night, our team will have infra-red, thermal and live mini-cameras to provide a unique insight into their rarely-glimpsed nocturnal lives. The latest macro camera technology will reveal the fascinating, hidden worlds of tiny creatures that normally go unnoticed - we'll truly have autumn covered from the canopy to the leaf litter.

Of course, the wildlife always writes the script, and we've learnt to expect the unexpected on Autumnwatch! But we're hoping to bring you the following:-

  • Beavers - for the first time in the UK, Autumnwatch aims to show exclusive, intimate views from a live camera inside a beaver's lodge as they prepare for winter.
  • Pine martens - these secretive and little known creatures are notoriously elusive but Autumnwatch will have a privileged opportunity to see them up close.
  • Mammal stump - back by popular demand: the mammal stump is a hollowed out tree trunk with embedded cameras and offers a unique perspective on the dramatic lives of small mammals.
  • Buzzards, red squirrels and foxes. In autumn all these species employ different feeding strategies as they prepare for winter. Scavenging, hoarding or stealing - we'll be following their every move.

Live Online and on BBC Red Button
This year, there's more opportunity than ever to watch the action. The remote wildlife cameras switch on on Sunday 28th October, before the series airs on TV.

We now have an Olympic line up of platforms to watch the cameras on - BBC Red Button, the Web, iPads, iPhones, android phones and tablets. So now you can stay tuned to the action, where ever you are.

We're also excited to announce that this year, for 17 hours a day, we'll have live commentary on the live cameras from wildlife experts and broadcasters Chris Sperring and Euan McIlwraith. (Between midnight and 7am the cameras will still be live, with text commentary - apparently presenters need to sleep.)

As always, there are plenty of ways for all of you to get involved.


The Autumnwatch team will be checking all these regularly and we're looking forward to seeing your pictures, receiving your questions, and finding out about your own experiences of autumn.

So that's the big news about the new series, and the new location. But that's just the start - from our base in Scotland we'll be following autumn across the UK, and the team are already out and about filming. The autumnal highlights include an in-depth wild diary, showcasing the beauty of the UK's most iconic landscapes, and revealing the new science and behaviour of some of our best loved animals. We'll be posting more news about all of this soon. Also, look out for a blog from our very own Martin Hughes-Games, who'll be talking about how everyone can get involved in Autumnwatch Unsprung.

And if that wasn't enough, after Autumnwatch, we'll be telling you all about our brand new series, Winterwatch - live for 4 days in January.

We hope you are all as excited about the new look Autumnwatch and Winterwatch as we are!

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Comments

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  • rate this
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    Comment number 61.

    Very excited about AW but can only add my disappointment at the dramatic shortening of the series (I liked the 'one a week for several weeks' format we had previously as mentioned by Chris A). Only one Unsprung too.....
    Come on BBC bosses! There are loads of SW/AW fans out there! How can other programs run year round or have regular series? Less competition type shows (Strictly & Masterchef etc...) please and more nature!!!
    It is good news about Winterwatch, and will look forward to that too; but another 4 day slot doesn't make up for the usual 3 weeks or 1 a week for 8 weeks we're going to miss out on.....

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 62.

    All the work that goes into setting up and filming springwatch & autumnwatch for only four episodes and one unsprung, what a shame as they are compelling viewing
    all about what is around us all, please please look to the future and extend at least to the same amount of time as most other things on tv, if we don,t educate the younger viewers what hope of we of them joining in there conservation, even if they only feed the birds.

  • rate this
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    Comment number 63.

    Have query. Been woken twice recently by a really scary sound outside. I know you will be thinking 'owl/fox/badger' etc, but I am positive it is none of these. I can only describe it as sounding like a angry Pterodactyl crossed with a giant chicken, being grabbed around the throat and throttled! the noise is so loud, it sounds as if it is inside the house. My daughter has heard it too and experienced it in the same way I did. Any suggestions as to what it might be? I live in a town near Christchurch in Dorset, so nowhere exotic!

  • rate this
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    Comment number 64.

    Wendy 63 Jays can make quite a noise.

  • rate this
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    Comment number 65.

    Come on you lot, Ashleyhr is right. Autumn moves at a slow pace unlike spring, just enjoy the 4 programmes plus Unsprung. Then in January catch up on events, in between read a book, even better get out and see the wonders of autumn for yourself. I know not every one can get out, but I’m sure the majority of you can. If you know someone that can’t get out, make the effort and take them. I’m sure they would appreciate that more than watching TV anyway. Leave the BBC alone and let them get on with the difficult job of producing these shows for us. P.S. I agree, bring Bill Back.

  • rate this
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    Comment number 66.

    Why only 4 programmes and one Unsprung ?
    More next year please !

  • rate this
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    Comment number 67.

    4 DAYS OF AUTUMNWATCH - TRAGIC. One of the richest times in the countryside year and the BBC spend pence. I'll still look forward to the 240 minutes on offer with relish. Perhaps the team can get more of the Great British public to make Wildlife programmes to support them. UNSPRUNG...just classic BBC television, its a pity you're only using that once. The programmes are such a viewing highlight to every year its sad the series is being axed. Anyhow, best of luck with the new AUTUMNWATCH week.

  • rate this
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    Comment number 68.

    autumn watch , if you find yourselves bereft of red squirrels ,do come to my garden red squirrels come from morning to night to feed, this year there have been a lot more babies than previous years, they have been burying there peanuts all over my garden . there is one with what looks like a growth on the side of his face, it does not seem to deter him eating ,but if you could tell me what it might be i would be grateful. i live directly across from a pine forest and have lots of birds feeding, a wood mouse,and the occasional woodpecker , and later in autumn i can often see deer about 30 feet from my window. how lucky am i .

  • rate this
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    Comment number 69.

    Looking forward so much to the Autumn Watch programmes, but bitterly disappointed it is so short.
    Marvellous news about a Winter Watch in January - but again - why so short?

  • rate this
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    Comment number 70.

    This isn't a surprise at all. The show has been slipping since Simon King left. Nature programming is now officially a niche. I guess we now have to go elsewhere to find decent coverage of our Great British wildlife. Such a shame.

 

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Unsprung, your autumnal videos...and conkers

Monday 8 October 2012, 09:32

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