Garden Wildlife in London: Attenborough Inside the M25

Have you ever dreamed about being like David Attenborough, the famous English television presenter, who brings his love of the natural world into living rooms across the world? You don’t have to travel to exotic places to film wildlife frolicking. Right here in London it’s possible to spot all sorts of animals and wildlife right in your garden…or in your rubbish bins. So let’s take a tour of some wild creatures you can find in the heart of the big city. This is garden wildlife in London.

Foxes (Vulpes Vulpes)

It’s estimated that over 10,000 red foxes live in London. Sleeping in wooded areas and abandoned buildings during the day, they come out at night to explore the city. With the expansion of London in the 1930s, foxes were introduced into the urban landscape. Since then, they’ve got used to living in the city and become more docile.

Urban Fox in London Photo by Valentina Rinaudo from the Londonist Flickr pool

European Badger (Meles Meles)

The badger is a small and energetic mammal that lives around the edges of London. They can be aggressive, and they enjoy eating earthworms. Some people consider them a pest because they can pass illnesses to cows, but this can be prevented through vaccination.

Ring-necked Parakeet (Psittacula Krameri Manillensis)

If you’re ever in a park in central London, pay close attention to the trees. You might be lucky enough to catch a glimpse of these beautiful, green tropical birds. Nobody is completely sure about how these Indian birds came to live in London. Two common stories are that American guitarist, Jimi Hendrix, lost his pets while staying in London in 1968, or that these birds were brought to London to film the Humphrey Bogart and Katharine Hepburn film, The African Queen. Either way, the Ring-necked Parakeet can now be found far and wide in London, thousands of miles from their native habitat.

ring-necked-parakeet Creator_mihir_joshi

Common Pipistrelle (Pipistrellus Pipistrellus)

Here’s another flying friend that you can find in London. This one, though, can only be seen at night. The Common Pipistrelle is the smallest and most common bat in the UK. They’re only the size of a matchbox, but they can feed on thousands of insects per night.


This is just a small selection of the varied garden wildlife in London. Our great city is known for its old buildings made of stone, brick, and cement, but that doesn’t mean nature doesn’t live here too. Take a look around you and you’ll be able to find some amazing animals in the middle of our urban jungle.

Vocabulary Activity


  1. (n.) A destructive insect or animal that attacks plants or other animals

  2. (adj.) Calm; tame; not wild

  3. (v.) Play or move in a cheerful, happy way

  4. (n./v.) A momentary or partial view. To see something briefly or quickly

  5. (phr.) Over a large area

  6. (adj.) Having been deserted or left

  7. (adj.) Colourful; not common; coming from a foreign country

  8. (adj.) Relating to towns or cities

  9. (n.) The natural home, or environment, of an animal or plant

  10. (adj.) Having a number of different types


  1. Pest

  2. Docile

  3. Frolicking (“frolic” is the infinitive verb)

  4. Glimpse

  5. Far and wide

  6. Abandoned

  7. Exotic

  8. Urban

  9. Habitat

  10. Varied

This is Ingla School of English‘s weekly blog, intended as reading practise for our students in Turnpike Lane, in London, and around the globe. We hope you’ve enjoyed it and take a look at the rest of our writing, much of which has activities for teachers to use in the classroom.