I just discovered that the first episode of Springwatch on BBC TV on Monday 27 May supposedly showed a couple of garden snails mating. The clip is not very clear as it all happens on a wet night in the dark but it’s still available on i-player. (http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b02144nm#clips) I think it just shows a couple of snails approaching each other in an exploratory way and then lots of shiny shells moving in the dark. It reminded me of the way sexual encounters used to be shown in some films, with the hero and heroine lying on the beach and the camera moving away to show the sea crashing onto the shore and you just had to use your imagination for the rest. But I happen to have a photo of two snails mating.

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So now you know what it looks like! I sometimes catch Springwatch but, as they pointed out themselves, it’s usually about birds so I got a bit bored with it. They set up webcams to try and catch sight of some mammals but failed and invertebrates hardly seem to feature at all except for a bit of pond dipping which is a shame. What a missed opportunity! They could have focussed the webcam onto the woodland floor and filmed all the activity in the leaf litter.

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