Press Centre

Wild Britain With Ray Mears

  • Episode: 

    5 of 10

  • Title: 

    River Wye
  • Transmission (TX): 

    Fri 01 Feb 2013
  • TX Confirmed: 

  • Time: 

    8.00pm - 8.30pm
  • Week: 

    Week 5 2013 : Sat 26 Jan - Fri 01 Feb
  • Channel: 



In the third series of WILD BRITAIN WITH RAY MEARS, Ray continues his celebration of the British landscape and its wildlife. Ray travels the length and breadth of Britain during spring and summer to explore forests, rivers, islands and coasts – revealing the wildlife secrets that each habitat reveals if you know where to look. 
At each location Ray meets a cast of local experts - conservationists and amateur enthusiasts with a passion for the wildlife on their doorstep. He shares his knowledge of field crafts, such as cooking limpets collected from the shore or tracking and observational techniques for wildlife, and examines the underlying geology which has given each landscape its character.
In this episode, Ray takes a trip down the River Wye in Wales.
Ray starts his journey in the wet Cambrian Mountains, then meets Dr John Taylor – an Environment Agency scientist trying to save a critically endangered mollusc – the freshwater pearl mussel – an indicator species for the water quality in Britain’s fifth longest river.
He observes the mating behaviour of the weird-looking sea lamprey which have travelled up the river to spawn at the end of their lives.
The birdlife along the Wye is rich and varied – Ray watches a colony of sand martins as they tend to their young from his canoe. The Wye is also one of the only places to see all three species of British wagtail – pied, grey and the very striking yellow.
Watervole numbers have been decimated by mink across the UK but in Wales they are making an extraordinary comeback – Ray meets Richard Davies who is responsible for the release of 1500 back into the Welsh waterways.