VIDEO: Sheffield’s Urban Jungle on TV

OTTERS play beside the crystal water of a trout-stocked river, Badgers and foxes roam free, Kingfishers and Peregrine Falcons soar above.

A scene from a Peak District beauty spot? The Yorkshire Dales perhaps?

Mike Dilger in Sheffield for the urban jungle for BBC

Mike Dilger in Sheffield for the urban jungle for BBC

No, Sheffield city centre.

The city has become a haven for wildlife with one of the most diverse and abundant concentrations of species of any city in the uk - and it’s all about to be featured on TV.

The BBC’s Urban Jungle series comes to Sheffield tonight to take a close look at the teeming wildlife with which we share our city.

Presenter Mike Dilger - who spent many of his school holidays at his grandmother’s in Gregg House Road, Shiregreen, Sheffield - will present the show from his favourite city.

birds at Brockholes Nature Reserve

birds at Brockholes Nature Reserve

“We are doing three half-hour shows from Yorkshire and Sheffield is definitely the strongest,” said 46-year-old Wildlife expert Mike.

“Sheffield has the most amazing wildlife. There are otters and kingfishers by the Don, we saw a pike a metre long in the river and there are grayling, roach and perch in there.

“It’s so clean now and that attracts the fish and insects which attract other forms of wildlife. We watched from the University Arts Tower as five Peregrines chased each other around St George’s Church and the tower blocks.

“The presence of the kingfisher says a huge amount about the quality of the water, there are badger setts in the heart of Sheffield and urban foxes have adapted perfectly to our throwaway society.

Otter

Otter

“I think it’s really exciting to see carniovores living in the city. It gives a contrast to our otherwise sanitised lives. We’d like people to encourage wildlife by leaving parts of their gardens wild or by having ponds that attract newts or frogs

“We went along the Five Weirs Walk and saw Water Crowfoot flowers growing on the River Don between a tyre recycling centre and a transport yard. We could have been anywhere in the Peak District or Dales.

“Sheffield is a fantastic green city and Sheffielders should be proud.”

*Urban Jungle is on BBC 1 at 7pm tonight part of the BBC’s Summer of Wildlife season. See BBC Nature

Water Crowfoot

Water Crowfoot