SOME of the most amazing glimpses of wildlife in the BBC’s new Springwatch series were made possible by a camera developed in Southampton.

The aerospace giant Leonardo’s developed thermal imaging technology which was used in the live nature series.

The camera started life at the company’s giant site at First Avenue in the city.

Leonardo’s says the accuracy of its camera technology led the BBC to choose it for capturing the nocturnal behaviours of animals which have never been observed before.

Footage captured by the camera has already appeared in the BBC’s Big Cats and Planet Earth 2 series, as well as Springwatch, Autumnwatch and Winterwatch.

The camera has recently been on location with BBC crews in countries including Africa and Peru for forthcoming nature series.

Springwatch was broadcast live every night from the Cairngorms National Park. The latest series included the biggest Gardenwatch survey of its kind, asking viewers to complete assessments on bird behaviour, a register of common mammals and a headcount of earthworms in their soil.

Leonardo said its production engineer Paul Thwaites and colleague Phil Lock were proud that their camera would have the potential to make a long-lasting contribution to the conservation of wildlife and natural environments.

Leonardo, a global high-tech company and one of the key players in Aerospace, Defence and Security, employs around 7,000 highly skilled staff across the UK and was recently awarded the Investors in People Gold Standard.

This year’s Springwatch, Winterwatch and Autumnwatch programmes are being hosted by New Forest wildlife presenter Chris Packham, Iolo Williams, Michaela Strachan and Gillian Burke.

The team are spending the year observing the wildlife that thrives on the edge of the Abernethy Caledonian pine forest and looking at efforts to conserve the environment there. Other locations include various sties in Cornwall, the Glenfeshie Estate and Brighton.

Its Gardenwatch initiative enlisted viewers in helping to build a comprehensive report of the wildlife on the doorstep.

Chris Packham has said: "Gardenwatch is so important – we can really make a difference by attracting wildlife to our gardens, especially as across the UK they make up an area the size of Suffolk.

"Most importantly, the things we engage with the most are those who we share our space with – you can enjoy the wildlife that comes to you garden, ultimately improving your quality of life and theirs."