Moorland – Dartmoor is one of the wildest places in the UK and it’s here that mike meets local naturalist, John Walters, who take him on a tour of discovery. They find the incredibly rare blue ground beetle which only exists in a handful of woods on the edge of Dartmoor and they see how the native Dartmoor ponies play a vital part in the area by grazing the landscape and keeping the moorland open.
Devon is home to a third of all Greater Horseshow Bats and Mike becomes ‘Batman’ in this episode as he goes in search of their largest colony – and finds it. Each night they fly from their roost to feed on insects and using an ‘echo locator’ and infra-red camera, Mike can see and hear them at dusk. We can encourage smaller more common bats into our own gardens by putting up bat boxes and this Mike does in a nearby garden.
He also visits Buckfast Abbey to see their famous strain of bees and hear why the moorland is so important to them.
Armed with inspiration from this wild country Mike meets Robin Hill in his garden and encourages him to plant heathers and bring a little bit of moorland into the garden. He also visits RHS Rosemoor on the edge of Exmoor where Dave Squires, horticulturalist and heather expert explains why heathers are important for the garden and how sadly they are now ‘out of fashion’.
With thanks to
Dartmoor Pony Society
Dartmoor National Park
Vincent Wildlife Trust
Executive Producer for ITV
Produced and Directed by
© Mallinson Sadler Productions 2008
MALLINSON SADLER PRODUCTIONS for ITV