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Bill Oddie
Bill Oddie gets Springwatch going

Expect the unexpected

Springwatch presenter Bill Oddie is in Devon again this spring, for the fourth series of the show. He tells us that you just can't make any plans, when working with animals.

The fourth Springwatch series hits the BBC TV screens at the end of May 2007. Once again, presenters Bill Oddie and Kate Humble will be broadcasting the show live from the barns at Fishleigh estate near Hatherleigh in west Devon.

And, once again, the Springwatch team will be keeping their fingers crossed that the animals 'co-operate.'

Cameras are set up at locations around Fishleigh estate's organic farm, and tiny cameras are installed inside bird nest boxes.

But not even Bill knows what will happen during the three weeks the show is on air.

Ahead of the series, he told BBC Radio Devon: "You don't really know until you do it because all the best things, you don't really plan.

Kate Humble and Bill Oddie
Springwatch co-presenter Kate Humble

"I can't tell you now what birds and animals we will actually be featuring. I know what we're planning to feature.

"I know we are hoping to have a camera inside a kingfisher's nest inside a bank in a tunnel, which is pretty amazing. Now if we get that, I will be thrilled to pieces. I don't think that has ever been done.

"So with that sort of thing, we can't govern - we can plan, and we are hoping.

"You don't necessarily know if a bird is going to nest in a certain place. So we have many nest boxes set up and the camera can be slipped in there when we have a sign of birds nesting."

While Bill and Kate are based in Devon, the show's third presenter, Simon King, is again coming live from a Scottish island.

Bill revealed: "Simon is going to be based on the island of Islay off the coast of Scotland. I think he will be overseeing a golden eagle's nest.

"He likes that - he doesn't want to be with us," he joked.

The unpredictability of Springwatch is one of the things Bill likes best about presenting the programme.

"I like doing live television lots," said Bill. "And you can get away with saying things, sometimes, that you wouldn't be able to say on normal television. And I usually get into trouble when I do - but, nevertheless I do look forward to Springwatch enormously.

"I think it's the human effort, as well. A lot of people put wildlife into some sort of box, and don't relate it to people.

"We depend on wildlife not just because it's fascinating and it cheers us up, but because it's actually integral to life on earth."

Find out more about what goes on behind the scenes at the Springwatch farm, in the feature linked from this page.

last updated: 30/05/07
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