Gardening for Wildlife in a Time of Isolation

Hello to all BEAM members and friends,

We hope you are all keeping well and well occupied in your new lives.  We have been spending a lot of time in the garden during our lovely Autumn days.

Judging by the conversations with friends – and the sale of seedlings in the local shops – many people are also sitting outside with a cup or glass or getting down and dirty in the garden.  The time now available to many of us at home has created lots of opportunities to enjoy, enhance our gardens and record the wildlife in our backyards.   Read on…..

Creating a Garden for Wildlife

Now is a great time to working in your gardens.  We have been re-organising our vegetable garden and planting lots of vegetables.  But we have also re-designed our garden to accommodate more native plants.  We are now seeing a few more birds and a wide variety of insects, spiders and more in our backyard.  Recently we were surprised and very pleased to see a female Red-capped Robin in our yard.  Apart from the pleasure of watching native wildlife in your garden, you will be helping the survival of our local fauna and your garden will benefit from attracting all the pollinators and predators needed to create a healthy garden and a joyous place to be. 

In addition to planting a diversity of native plants for birds and insects, you can also:  set up a bird bath or 2, make and install insect hotels for native bees, set up a frog pond (I have seen clips on using PVC pipe scraps to create shelter for frogs), set up rock piles for shelter and basking areas and much more!

Here are some useful sites on providing information and ideas for helping you make a garden that is wildlife friendly. 

Gardens for Wildlifehttps://gardensforwildlifevictoria.com/.  Local Group at   http://www.apsmitchell.org.au/gardens-for-wildlife/ or @g4wmitchell on Facebook

Habitat Stepping Stoneshttp://www.habitatsteppingstones.org.au/

Sustainable Gardening Australiahttps://www.sgaonline.org.au/.  Great site for resources and advice on setting your gardens up sustainably – useful for productive and non productive gardens as well as tips for wildlife friendly gardening

Citizen science in your backyard

You can get even more involved by recording and talking about the species you see in your backyard.  Several citizen science projects are running now and they are great family activities.

Birdlife Australia:  Birding at Home activities:  https://www.networkbirdlife.org/birding-at-home.  Enjoy a cuppa with the birds – 10 min bird survey during your morning cuppa.  Site has information, video clips of birds and resources

Wild Pollinator Count – open now:  https://wildpollinatorcount.com/blog/.  This is a simple survey run twice yearly – get involved.  The site has great resources and guides on how to contribute

Happy gardening

Peter and Barbara

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