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'Springwatch 2021' — start date, presenters, locations and everything you need to know

Springwatch 2021 presenters
Springwatch presenters Chris Packham, Michaela Strachan, Gillian Burke and Iolo Williams. (Image credit: BBC/Jo Charlesworth)

Springwatch 2021 is heading into its third and final week, and thanks to restrictions easing across the UK, the presenters are also able to head to new locations instead of focusing on their home turfs. 

The Springwatch team have been in three different locations, where we've meet an array of local wildlife and learned more about their routines and behaviours throughout each episode. 

Speaking about the latest season, Chris Packham told us: "The animals are always the stars of the show. We’re the supporting cast. We’re there to celebrate their beauty, their fascination, their interest and the revelations that they provide us with, the drama in their lives. We are there reporting on that explosion of nature in spring and that’s why the animals always have to be the stars of the show — that’s where all our content is, where our drama is."

Here's everything we know...

Springwatch 2021 release date

Springwatch 2021 started on Tuesday 25 May at 8pm on BBC2 and has aired Tuesdays to Fridays each week. The final episode will air on Friday 11 June. For those interested in following along outside of these times, there are live cameras to tune into featuring the locations from this series. You can also catch up on any missed episode of the series on BBC iPlayer. There are currently no plans to air the series in the US. 

What should we expect from Springwatch 2021?

Springwatch so far has seen the presenters exploring all sorts of locations including the coast, woodlands and farmlands, giving viewers a diverse selection of animals and their habitats. 

Here's what has happened in the series so far... 

Episode 1: Tuesday 25 May, BBC2, 8pm

In the first episode of the new season, we saw Chris Packham and Michaela Strachan visiting Wild Ken Hill in Norfolk. Here, they focused on a variety of birds such as avocets and barn owls, lapwings and yellow hammers, and took a look at the daily dramas of the animal kingdom.

Meanwhile, Iolo Williams meet red deer at Alladale Wilderness Reserve in Scotland and Gillian Burke dipped into the vast waters of Strangford Lough in Northern Ireland and introduced us to the sea swallow.

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Episode 2: Wednesday 26 May, BBC2, 8pm

This episode saw Gillian following a harbour seal who’s in hospital in Northern Ireland, discovering how staff are able to care for the wild animal. Meanwhile, Iolo was on the lookout for golden eagles in the Glen.

Michaela and Chris provided an insight into the effects of this year’s late Spring on our wildlife, and learned more about oak trees to see why so many thousands are able to thrive and live there, revealing the secret history of a London wood.

Episode 3: Thursday 27 May, BBC2, 8pm

In episode three, Chris and Michaela brought us the latest dramas from the live nest cameras in Norfolk and Iolo headed to Loch Fleet on Scotland’s east coast. Whilst there, he tried to spot ospreys and otters out fishing. 

Meanwhile, Gillian checked out the inhabitants of Castle Espie, a wetland reserve managed by the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust, while Megan McCubbin joined the passionate conservationists shaping the UK of tomorrow.

Episode 4: Friday 28 May, BBC2, 8pm

In Friday's episode, Iolo was on a mission to capture of the most photogenic birds in the UK, the black-throated diver. We also got live updates from Chris and Michaela in Norfolk, who were looking for signs of the rare turtle dove.

Meanwhile, Gillian discovered a British shark that can glow in the dark and learned why water voles are starting to choose living in cities over traditional country living.

Episode 5: Tuesday 1 June, BBC2, 8pm

This episode followed Chris Packham and Michaela Strachan as they continued their reporting live from Norfolk, while Gillian Burke looked at some clever cuttlefish and their remarkable abilities.

Then, Iolo Williams went into the Scottish Highlands to spot some avian show-offs and learned more about what these impressive birds have to offer.

Episode 6: Wednesday 2 June, BBC2, 8pm 

This episode saw Gillian returning to WWT Castle Espie, taking a look at Spring from a swift’s point. Insect fan Penny Metal joined the series to introduce us to the tiny residents in a London park. 

Meanwhile, Iolo checked out some alien species on the forest floor at Alladale Wilderness Reserve and there’s a Mindfulness Moment taking place in an ancient Oxfordshire woodland.

Episode 7: Thursday 3 June, BBC2, 8pm

This episode featured an island paradise for puffins in Scotland and golden hares in Northern Ireland, showing us more about how they grow and thrive in these environments.

Meanwhile, Chris checked in on the live nests to see who was ready to fledge, and Michaela reported on the plight of the Norfolk plovers. Finally in Wales, it was time to see if all the chough chicks survived to adulthood.

Episode 8: Friday 4 June, BBC2, 8pm

In this episode the Springwatch team looked into whether if great skuas deserve their reputation as pirates of the skies, while Megan McCubbin went to the Welsh border to investigate why restoring peatland bog is so important for wildlife. 

There was also a live round-up of the wild soap operas playing out in Norfolk and a rare peek at a secretive owl who resides in Northern Ireland.

What will happen in the final week of Springwatch 2021, starting on Tuesday 8th June?  

Episode 9 marks the start of the final week of Springwatch 2021, and we'll see which birds are ready to leave the nest and head out on their own into the wild. In addition to this, sea slugs make a colourful appearance and there's a report on the spring sounds of Sherwood Forest.

The final week of Springwatch 2021 will also see presenter Gillian Burke take a closer look at some cuttlefish from her base in Northern Ireland. She will also get close to seabirds Manx shearwaters, who breed in colonies before migrating to South America. 

Meanwhile Chris Packham and Michaela Strachan will see how hedgehogs are coping this spring, while Iolo Williams is checking out wildcats in the Scottish Highlands. 

Is there a trailer?

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A Springwatch trailer was shared via the programme's official Twitter account, where it teases it will showcase "the best of British wildlife" including fascinating courtship dances, the birth of new arrivals and insights from naturalists around the country who dedicate their lives to protecting wildlife.