[an error occurred while processing this directive]
« Previous | Main | Next »

Have you got any marine themed questions?

Post categories:

Gavin Boyland Gavin Boyland | 17:12 UK time, Monday, 10 October 2011

Hi everyone, Thanks to everyone who watched and got involved with Autumnwatch Unsprung last Friday. It feels great to be back on your screens and to see so many people taking part and getting involved online. How did you find the Unsprung quiz? Well done to everyone who got the capercaillie poo, that was a tricky one! With Chris, Michaela and Martin filming on Spurn Point this week we're developing a nautical, seaside, marine theme for this week's Unsprung. If you've got any questions along these lines let us know by commenting below. Or if you've found any weird wildlife items along the coast why not take a picture, upload it to our photo group and we'll see if we can get it IDed during the show. Keep the questions and videos coming, Gavin Gavin Boyland is the Producer of Autumnwatch Unsprung, which starts 9.30pm, Friday 7 October on BBC Two.

Update 26 October: This post is now closed for comments. If you'd like to ask a question or share a story with the Unsprung team please comment on this post.


  • Comment number 1.

    Really enjoyed the 1st Autumn Watch of 2011. Thought Michaela brought a breath of "Autumn " fresh air . Looking forward to next Friday .

  • Comment number 2.

    Do we know why there are an increasing number of sightings of usually uncommon visitors to the UK such as the Leatherback turtle and Sei whale?

  • Comment number 3.

    Hi there, I have heard that Beluga whales are toxic. Can you please elaborate for me. thanks, you guys are so great and very funny!!

  • Comment number 4.

    i'm heading to donna nook on wednesday - is it too early to see the seals ?

  • Comment number 5.

    We live in South East Cornwall and often spend the weekend rock pooling on local beaches... we are familiar with most commom species in the area but on a recent trip we saw a crab with a large pincer (the one on the other side was missing!), bumpy shell and lilac/purple under tummy... what type could this be as we have not seen one on this beach before!

  • Comment number 6.

    Now that a sea horse was found in the Thames is there any certainty that they are breeding there.

  • Comment number 7.

    Enjoyed the first show:-) My marine question is;- when watching seals they seem to eat the fish they catch with their head above the water. This gives watching seagulls the chance to snatch their food. Why do they do this, can't they eat underwater?

  • Comment number 8.

    over the past ten year but this year in paticular there has been a marked difference in fish quantities being caught by marine anglers most of which are returned by 99.9% of marine anglers. The fish are just not turning up such as flounder they used to be plentyfull in harbours during the winter months now they are scarce not being found in portsmouth harbour. chichester harbour, southampton water gets a few but not in the numbers that used to be found this is just one example please feel free to contact me for more examples and details

  • Comment number 9.

    How large does a marine reserve need to be before it becomes effective at protecting the ecosystem?
    Could sea animals migrate between reserves, or do the unprotected zones form an impassible barriers for them?

    Love the show, keep up the good work!

  • Comment number 10.

    Hi, 3 questions, firstly I am a newby fisherwomen, and just wonder why whitting tend to die when released back, and secondly why are shad an endangered species, I live in the northeast of England and caught a few during the mackerell season, I did release them. Also we had a really rough sea two days ago, then yesterday hundreds of crabs of all sizes where washed up with seaweed at high tide and stranded I have never seen this before

  • Comment number 11.

    Loved the first show! My question is this: what do Ocean Sunfish eat?

  • Comment number 12.

    Can you mention marine litter and the fact that alot of it actually gets dropped well inland then gets washed down drains into rivers and ends up in the sea and on our beaches


  • Comment number 13.



  • Comment number 14.

    Is it true that the chalk reef off the North Norfolk coast was only discovered last year? If so, how did it stay hidden for so long?

  • Comment number 15.

    Hi guys, keep the questions coming, there's some great ones already.

    @vanessa - Any chance you took a picture of your mysterious crab? If so could you load it up to our photo group (http://www.flickr.com/groups/bbcautumnwatch/%29, we'd like to take a look.

    We're lining up a great show for this Friday, can't wait to share it with you all.


  • Comment number 16.

    Have you any idea what this marine skull is? It looks like a beak of some sort. Found on Alnmouth beach earlier this year http://www.flickr.com/photos/yazz2/6234424223/in/photostream/

  • Comment number 17.

    This summer I noticed dozens of jellyfish washed up on the beach at Crosby on Merseyside, is this becoming more common as I've only seen the odd one in the past & how do they end up becoming stranded?

  • Comment number 18.

    I asked a question on the message board about Herring Gulls dropping mussels from height at Brancaster Staithe to crack them open. A lady from Orkney replied that she had seem similar behaviour, but as I had observed myself, only one of the birds was doing it. Is this a common thing? and why is only one bird doing it rather than others copying?

  • Comment number 19.

    Just about to post a picture of some tracks on a beach in NE Scotland - looks like it was made by a tractor but start and end in the sea! Mysterious.

  • Comment number 20.

    Link to the tracks picture below:
    Anyone know what made it? (I think I can guess but not sure. Especially strange as they just seem to stop suddenly about 15m up the beach.)

  • Comment number 21.

    I read about a colony of seahorses being discovered in the Thames, but can they live in a river?

  • Comment number 22.

    @ Gavin Unsprung Producer - sorry we did not have the camera with us and so have not got a photo unfortunately. We really are confused over this one as we were also on the beach with other very local people who are keen rock poolers like ourselves and they were not able to identify it! We did mention it on a visit to the National Marine Aquarium at the weekend and they suggested it could be some sort of American crab but weren't sure? Any help? Thank you!

  • Comment number 23.

    Half-silly Q - Do oysters (and other such shellfish) dream?? Slightly more pragmatic Q - (How?)Do shoreline/inter-tidal creatures (ever!) sleep ..??? I'm really looking forward to the marine segment/s - and to all the rest of your great autumn offerings (especially if you manage to include features on some (loads!) of the less commonly shown wildlife and all the harder to see things (endless list of possibilities ...)* - please!). Thanks and best regards, TB et al...
    * I guess microbes et al, and all their many roles and functions, are out of the question for AW/US ... at least for this year ..?!

  • Comment number 24.

    PS - I'm sure it would be mostly preaching to the converted but - could you plse add a caution on one of the shows re NOT tipping cooking oil etc down drains? The local news today reported that an entire population of fish and other wildlife had been killed on a communally-owned London pond, the deaths believed to have been caused by such casual behaviour.
    Thank you v.much, TB/CM.

  • Comment number 25.

    Re: questions on a marine theme. Have there been any deleterious effects recorded on river, estuarine or marine life caused by the thousands of tons of salt used on roads and paths last year?

  • Comment number 26.

    A friend asked me the other day, is there any difference between the otters we saw around the coast of Mull last year, and the otters in our rivers and canals inland? I know there is a "sea otter" which is a different species (like the one which lived in the harbour at Monterey in California & was filmed by Jamie McPherson)

  • Comment number 27.

    # 18, our herring gulls on the west coast of Scotland do the same and so do hooded crows. The local herring gulls often use my patio as the cracking ground - gets a tad gruesome sometimes.

  • Comment number 28.

    hi guys,

    Any news on the process of creating new marine reserves around the country and has it been effected by the spending cuts? Also since the colony of seahorses that we already know about is not getting the protection it should, is there any chance that the new site will not be trashed before it gets time to develop and increase?

    Also on another topic, do you think that the new charge for plastic bags in wales will make any difference to marine pollution around our coasts?


  • Comment number 29.

    Hi Team,
    Some two weeks ago during that hot weekend I visited Powys Castle at Welshpool, walking along the the path by the Balastrade at the front of the Casle there were 3/4 large Urns filled in part with small yellow and blue summer flowers. These flowers were covered in bees collecting pollen, I noticed that the bees that were on the yellow flowers never visited the blue flowers, while bees on the blue flowers never visited the yellow flowers. All the bees appeared to be the same species. I counted a bee on a blue flower collecting pollen from 10 consecutive
    blue flowers, while a bee on a yellow flower collecting pollen from 10 consecutive yellow flowers. Is this usual? Comments please.
    Derek Johnston

  • Comment number 30.

    Chris, why are wasps so attracted by our wooden garden bench? They settle down almost as if they were drinking from it. When they fly off they leave a little wet patch behind, but once that dries, there's no visible sign they've been there.

  • Comment number 31.

    Do you believe that we will succeed in conserving the worlds' Oceans?
    It seems to be destruction for the sake of greed...

  • Comment number 32.

    Seals can see well in clear water, but how do they find food in muddy estuaries?

  • Comment number 33.

    We were on the Farne Islands this week and were lucky enough to spot a seal pup being born. It appeared that the rest of the colony were encircling her - is this a natural form of protection or just pure coincidence?

  • Comment number 34.

    Where is the best place in England or Wales to see Seals, Whales and Dolphins?

  • Comment number 35.

    I love Spring/Autumnwatch, and unsprung is always a fun 2nd course, but I was distracted by the audience nudging their way round to the back of the presenters which I found very annoying. Why are there so many people all of a sudden? I personally thought the original cosy set up with just the crew was more enjoyable. I suddenly felt surrounded by spying strangers trying to get in on the act and wanted them out!!!

  • Comment number 36.

    Since you asked about creatures we cannot identify, can anyone help with this crab? I posted the query with two pictures on http://www.nhm.ac.uk/natureplus/thread/5146?tstart=0 , but no-one has identified it yet.

    John Rostron

  • Comment number 37.

    Hi John,
    It looks a little like a young Marbled Rock Crab...where did you find it? I can't be sure but that's my best guess...

  • Comment number 38.

    Thanks Maya,

    This was found on the Pacific Oyster beds at Colne Point nature reserve in Essex. Following your suggestion, I see that it has been found on the south coast of the UK. This one does not show the marbling of the adult, but it does show the three spines along the side of the carapace, so it does seem possible.


BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.