A group of wildlife experts, scientists and the BBC have produced a television series – “The Burrowers” – that reveals what rabbits, badgers and voles do in the privacy of their underground burrows. Scenes never before captured for TV include the birth of five baby rabbits, called kits.
Sarah Chalmers reported on the forthcoming three-part series in the UK’s Daily Mail. Here are some highlights:
The Burrowers. Wildlife expert Chris Packham, who presents it, says, ‘I’m quite a pragmatic bloke. I don’t use the cute word too often – but that first rabbit birth was a champagne moment.’
And it’s just one of numerous jaw-dropping scenes that form part of this hugely ambitious natural history experiment. Chris and a BBC2 team of wildlife experts and scientists have painstakingly designed and built full-scale replicas of the underground homes of some of Britain’s best-loved burrowing animals – rabbits, badgers and water voles – in a bid to enter their secretive world and understand them better.
Over three fascinating hours of television we will learn how these creatures create their homes, breed and give birth. ‘We all use the expression “breeding like rabbits”, but they’re actually a very secretive species, especially regarding their young, so this was incredible to witness,’ says Chris.
Very little has actually ever been observed inside underground habitats, because to do so would risk disturbing the animals and either frightening them or causing them to behave unnaturally. Chris, who also presents Springwatch, admits he was sceptical at first about the project, not least because frightened animals are prone to eating their offspring.
To read the complete article, please visit: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2368911/New-BBC-tracks-bunnies-badgers-water-voles-burrows–reveals-amazingly-sophisticated-are.html
Broadcast of the series starts August 9, 2013 on BBC2 at 9 pm in the UK. Hoppington Post hopes that it will be available to viewers in other parts of the world at some point, whether shared on YouTube or made available by some other means. We look forward to seeing this fascinating nature documentary series.
Photo courtesy of Harlequeen