|Why Attract Backyard Wildlife?
| ||It's great fun to see a chipmunk, finch, or even a deer in your own backyard! There are as many different ways to attract wildlife as there are kinds of wildlife to attract. We have suggestions to help, whether you're looking for easy things to do to bring wildlife in; you're keen to attract birds, butterflies, or other creatures; you want to keep other critters away; you've found a baby animal in your yard or an adult animal stuck somewhere; or you get so into backyard wildlife that you want your yard to be an official Backyard Habitat. In fact, having wildlife in your yard has more benefits than you may have imagined. Here are some fantastic things about having a yard full of wildlife:|
- Motivate kids to explore.
Busy families sometimes forget to allow children time to play outside--enjoying the sunshine, making discoveries, and learning the secrets of nature. Having backyards rich with wildlife is great incentive for kids to get outside and explore."
"The creatures who share our property have provided hours of entertainment and education for us, especially our 10-year-old daughter." Kay, mother of one.
- Make animal neighbors familiar.
Though many kids today learn about rain forests and coral reefs, getting to know their animal neighbors is an important building block to caring about things in other places.
- Provide extraordinary moments.
Meeting a striped snake in a woodpile, discovering a nest of newborn bunnies, watching robin eggs hatch in a nest on the windowsill‹these are experiences we remember forever.
- Empower kids.
Kids get to make a difference for animals by creating much-needed habitat for local wildlife that's "easier on the earth" than a yard full of grass. Consider this: about 25 million acres of land in the U.S. are planted in residential lawns. These lawns use 30-60% of drinkable city water and more than 70 million pounds of chemical pesticides and 70 million tons of fertilizers each year. Add in the fact that, per hour of operation, a typical lawnmower emits about 10 to 12 times as much polluting hydrocarbon as a typical car, and you can see why we recommend planting for wildlife!
If you don't have a backyard...
...create a little habitat on your balcony or patio or even in a local park or empty lot. Plant a butterfly bush in a pot, set up a birdbath, hang a hummingbird feeder, or put up a wren house.