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Page last updated at 14:59 GMT, Wednesday, 28 April 2010 15:59 UK
Springwatch 2010 to be in Dorset
Kate Humble, Simon King, Chris Packham
The BBC Springwatch programme begins on May 31 2010

Dorset's nature and wildlife will feature in the forthcoming series of the BBC Two programme, Springwatch.

The programme is based in Norfolk, but will include regular live reports and pre-recorded items from around Dorset, with presenter Simon King.

Springwatch will run Monday to Thursday for three weeks, from Monday 31 May.

Vanessa Coates, who is a member of the Springwatch production team, said: "We want to show the uniqueness of Dorset's wildlife."


The main programme team who put Springwatch together are based in the BBC's Natural History unit in Bristol.

During the programme's broadcast, however, most of the team will move to the programme's main location, which is Pensthorpe Nature Reserve in Norfolk.

A team of 30 production staff will also be based in Dorset for the show's run.

Vanessa Coates said: "One of the main reasons we chose to come to Dorset is the county's biodiversity [the number and variety of organisms found within geographic regions], and 2010 is the International Year of Biodiversity.

"Dorset is one of the most biodiverse counties in the UK - there's a variety of habitats and that's very interesting."


Simon King
Simon King is keen to explore Dorset for Springwatch

Vanessa said the programme's Dorset content is still currently being planned:

"We are still looking at locations and we haven't decided exactly where we will be.

"But we're looking at different wildlife habitats, such as chalk downland, heathland and the coast.

"We want to show that nature is accessible to everyone."

The series will also be exploring Dorset's marine life, when Simon King goes diving off the Jurassic Coast.

Presenter Simon King said: "Dorset is a county that I have wanted to feature for some time on Springwatch and we have got our opportunity this year and it's about this sense of Mediterranean Britain.

"There are so many species there which often go unnoticed but which are in their way big and dynamic, for example the raft spider - the biggest spider in the UK, and grasshoppers, the hobby bird of prey, grass snakes and nightjar, and so much else besides.

"We are also going to get under the waves which will be a laugh, because the last time we tried diving on live telly, there was a rip tide and I spent half my time upside down holding onto a rock - so that will be funny just trying to get on air."

This is not the first time the BBC has based its Springwatch or Autumnwatch series in Dorset.

The 2008 series of Autumnwatch was based on Brownsea Island in Poole Harbour, and in 2009 it focused on Portland Bird Observatory.

Springwatch 2010, presented by Kate Humble and Chris Packham in Norfolk, and Simon King in Dorset, will begin on BBC Two on May 31 and run until June 17.

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