Many people put effort into keeping wildlife out of their yards, with fences, chemical repellents, and more. But what about those of us who want to create a more wildlife-friendly landscape?
Wildlife-friendly yards not only bring the wonder of nature right into our own backyards, but they also can help support biodiversity and ecological balance.
There are a few simple ways to entice wildlife into your outdoor space. Here are some of our favorites.
Use native plants.
Native vegetation attracts native wildlife. The plants and animals in a geological area evolve together, and local wildlife species will naturally be attracted to local plants as sources of food or shelter. Choose local trees, shrubs, flowers, and grasses to create a diverse landscape that wildlife will enjoy.
Add water features.
Water draws in all types of wildlife, from insects and birds to amphibians. Include water in your landscape design using bird baths, ponds, or fountains.
Add a bird feeder.
Bird feeders filled with seeds, nuts, or fruits are sure to attract birds of different species, turning your yard into a bird-watching paradise.
Try adding a nesting box.
If you want to take your bird-friendly yard to the next level, look into adding a nesting box or birdhouse to your landscape. These boxes give birds a safe place to build nests. Additionally, leave some twigs, leaves, or grass clippings in your yard, as birds can use these when building a nest.
Be strategic with your flower choices and placement.
Attract bees and butterflies with flowers that are brightly colored and that produce a lot of nectar and pollen. Plant them in clusters to maximize their attractiveness. This will be good not only for your garden, but for the ecosystem as a whole.
Follow sustainable gardening practices.
Pesticides and herbicides can be harmful to beneficial insects or other animals. Plus, they can contaminate valuable water sources. You can also save water for the wildlife by planting drought-resistant native plants and using efficient irrigation and watering systems.
Create natural shelters.
Rock piles, fallen branches, or brush piles can be used by small mammals, reptiles, or insects for shelter. Be careful with this option, as it can also attract unwanted animals or pests to your yard.
If you create a sustainable landscape that offers food, water, and shelter, you’ll be sure to attract an abundance of wildlife to your outdoor space.