Wales’ First Minister wades into I’m A Celebrity controversy

Wales' First Minister has waded into the controversy over the use of non-native wildlife on I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here!

The Guardian has said the programme is under police investigation amid concerns wildlife used in the trials could have escaped into the Welsh countryside.

The ITV show has defended its use of bugs, saying all the insects used during the programme are "non-invasive species".

Wales' First Minister Mark Drakeford told BBC Breakfast: "We worked carefully with the production company to make sure that all the rules are being observed.

"If there have been some infringement then it's right that they are investigated.

"We would be concerned about non-native species being released."

He said that "viewers will have seen the stories from Denmark recently about mink and coronavirus crossing species.

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ABERGELE, WALES - NOVEMBER 03: An aerial drone view of Gwyrch Castle and television production marquees on November 03, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle will be the setting of this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle, is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. The first episode of this year's show will be broadcast on November 15th. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - NOVEMBER 03: Shops and businesses in Abergele decorate their windows to welcome the cast of ITV's reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" which will be filmed at nearby Gwyrch Castle on November 03, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle will be the setting of this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle, is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. The first episode of this year's show will be broadcast on November 15th. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - NOVEMBER 03: An aerial drone view of Gwyrch Castle and television production marquees on November 03, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle will be the setting of this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle, is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. The first episode of this year's show will be broadcast on November 15th. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - NOVEMBER 03: Shops and businesses in Abergele decorate their windows to welcome the cast of ITV's reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" which will be filmed at nearby Gwyrch Castle on November 03, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle will be the setting of this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle, is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. The first episode of this year's show will be broadcast on November 15th. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - NOVEMBER 03: Shops and businesses in Abergele decorate their windows to welcome the cast of ITV's reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" which will be filmed at nearby Gwyrch Castle on November 03, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle will be the setting of this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle, is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. The first episode of this year's show will be broadcast on November 15th. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - NOVEMBER 03: Shops and businesses in Abergele decorate their windows to welcome the cast of ITV's reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" which will be filmed at nearby Gwyrch Castle on November 03, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle will be the setting of this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle, is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. The first episode of this year's show will be broadcast on November 15th. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - NOVEMBER 03: Shops and businesses in Abergele decorate their windows to welcome the cast of ITV's reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" which will be filmed at nearby Gwyrch Castle on November 03, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle will be the setting of this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle, is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. The first episode of this year's show will be broadcast on November 15th. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - NOVEMBER 03: Shops and businesses in Abergele decorate their windows to welcome the cast of ITV's reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" which will be filmed at nearby Gwyrch Castle on November 03, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle will be the setting of this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle, is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. The first episode of this year's show will be broadcast on November 15th. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - NOVEMBER 03: Shops and businesses in Abergele decorate their windows to welcome the cast of ITV's reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" which will be filmed at nearby Gwyrch Castle on November 03, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle will be the setting of this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle, is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. The first episode of this year's show will be broadcast on November 15th. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - AUGUST 14: A general view of Castell Gwyrch on August 14, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle rumoured to be the set of this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle, is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
A general view shows the ruined 19th century country house Gwrych Castle in Abergele, North Wales, on August 18, 2020. - The ruined Grade 1 Listed attraction seeks to replicate European medieval architecture. Owned by Gwrych Castle Preservation Trust the main building is a ruin with only the walls remaining. Local media have reported the rumour that Gwrych Castle is under consideration to host the television show I'm a Celebrity...Get Me Out of Here! after the usual Australian venue was unable to accomodate the show due to the novel coronavirus. (Photo by Paul ELLIS / AFP) (Photo by PAUL ELLIS/AFP via Getty Images)
A general view shows the ruined 19th century country house Gwrych Castle in Abergele, North Wales, on August 18, 2020. - The ruined Grade 1 Listed attraction seeks to replicate European medieval architecture. Owned by Gwrych Castle Preservation Trust the main building is a ruin with only the walls remaining. Local media have reported the rumour that Gwrych Castle is under consideration to host the television show I'm a Celebrity...Get Me Out of Here! after the usual Australian venue was unable to accomodate the show due to the novel coronavirus. (Photo by Paul ELLIS / AFP) (Photo by PAUL ELLIS/AFP via Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - AUGUST 14: A general view of Castell Gwyrch on August 14, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle rumoured to be the set of this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle, is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - AUGUST 14: A general view of Castell Gwyrch on August 14, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle rumoured to be the set of this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle, is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - AUGUST 14: A general view of Castell Gwyrch on August 14, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle rumoured to be the set of this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle, is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - AUGUST 14: A general view of Castell Gwyrch on August 14, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle rumoured to be the set of this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle, is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - AUGUST 14: A general view of Castell Gwyrch on August 14, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle rumoured to be the set of this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle, is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - AUGUST 14: A general view of Castell Gwyrch on August 14, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle is rumoured to be the setting for this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here." Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - AUGUST 14: A general view of Castell Gwyrch on August 14, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle rumoured to be the set of this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle, is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - AUGUST 14: A general view of Castell Gwyrch on August 14, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle rumoured to be the set of this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle, is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - AUGUST 14: A general view of Castell Gwyrch on August 14, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle rumoured to be the set of this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle, is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - AUGUST 14: A general view of Castell Gwyrch on August 14, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle rumoured to be the set of this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle, is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - AUGUST 14: A general view of Castell Gwyrch on August 14, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle is rumoured to be the setting for this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here." Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - AUGUST 14: A general view of Castell Gwyrch on August 14, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle is rumoured to be the setting for this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here." Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - AUGUST 14: A general view of Castell Gwyrch on August 14, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle is rumoured to be the setting for this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here." Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - AUGUST 14: A general view of Castell Gwyrch on August 14, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle is rumoured to be the setting for this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here." Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - AUGUST 14: A general view of Castell Gwyrch on August 14, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle is rumoured to be the setting for this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here." Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - AUGUST 14: A general view of Castell Gwyrch on August 14, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle is rumoured to be the setting for this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here." Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - AUGUST 14: A general view of Castell Gwyrch on August 14, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle is rumoured to be the setting for this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here." Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - AUGUST 14: A general view of Castell Gwyrch on August 14, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle rumoured to be the set of this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle, is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - AUGUST 14: A general view of Castell Gwyrch on August 14, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle is rumoured to be the setting for this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here." Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - AUGUST 14: A general view of Castell Gwyrch on August 14, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle is rumoured to be the setting for this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here." Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
CLWYD, UNITED KINGDOM. MAY 2018. Aerial Photograph of the 19th century Gwrych Castle on the May 12th, 2018. Located on the North Wales Coastline near Abergele, 24 miles south west of Liverpool. (Photograph by David Goddard/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - AUGUST 14: A general view of Castell Gwyrch on August 14, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle is rumoured to be the setting for this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here." Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - AUGUST 14: A general view of Castell Gwyrch on August 14, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle is rumoured to be the setting for this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here." Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ABERGELE, WALES - AUGUST 14: A general view of Castell Gwyrch on August 14, 2020 in Abergele, Wales. Gwyrch Castle is rumoured to be the setting for this year's ITV reality TV show "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here." Usually filmed in Queensland, Australia, this year's show will be held in the UK due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Gwrych Castle is a near derelict Grade I listed country house that stands in 250 acres of gardens and grounds on the North Wales coast. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
A general view shows the ruined 19th century country house Gwrych Castle in Abergele, North Wales, on August 18, 2020. - The ruined Grade 1 Listed attraction seeks to replicate European medieval architecture. Owned by Gwrych Castle Preservation Trust the main building is a ruin with only the walls remaining. Local media have reported the rumour that Gwrych Castle is under consideration to host the television show I'm a Celebrity...Get Me Out of Here! after the usual Australian venue was unable to accomodate the show due to the novel coronavirus. (Photo by Paul ELLIS / AFP) (Photo by PAUL ELLIS/AFP via Getty Images)
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"We wouldn't want to see non-native species being released here in Wales because of the risks that that could pose to the health of other wildlife but potentially, as in the Danish situation, the risk to human health as well."

But he said the programme "has brought the eyes of people outside Wales to Wales".

And he added: "Looking ahead to next year, of course, we look forward very much to being able to welcome people back here to Wales."

Police are investigating the programme over its use of non-native species of bugs including cockroaches, maggots, spiders and worms, according to The Guardian.

I'm A Celebrity� Get Me Out Of Here!
Sir Mo Farah is taking part in this year's series (ITV)

The newspaper said the programme had potentially breached the Wildlife and Countryside Act if it failed to get a licence for the release of the insects.

I'm A Celebrity is being filmed in Wales rather than its usual location in Australia due to the coronavirus pandemic.

A range of insects have been used during the programme's notoriously unpleasant trials which have seen large quantities of bugs dumped on to the celebrities as they take part in challenges.

The programme's spokesman added: "All of the insects used on I'm A Celebrity are non-invasive species.

"They are only ever released in a contained area and collected immediately after filming.

"The bugs are UK-bred and are commercially purchased in the UK for birds and exotic animal feed for pets and zookeepers in normal circumstances.

"Our insects have been donated to local wildlife sanctuaries, trusts and zoos for their exotic animal and bird feed after filming."

I'm A Celebrity� Get Me Out Of Here!
Victoria Derbyshire is also one of the campmates at Gwrych Castle (ITV)

Welsh naturalist and BBC Springwatch presenter Iolo Williams raised questions over the programme's use of the creatures.

Last week he tweeted: "As well as the moral issue of using wild animals for entertainment, surely there are huge ecological issues here also."

Celebrities including athlete Sir Mo Farah, TV presenter Vernon Kay and journalist Victoria Derbyshire are among the famous faces taking part in this series of the programme.

Filming is taking place at Gwrych Castle near Abergele, North Wales.

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