Protecting Our Wildlife- What You Can Do
It’s unsettling to hear in the news lately of a number birds of prey being illegally shot, poisoned and trapped across the country. Studies have been ongoing for a number of years and the figure of incidents of birds being killed illegally is reaching almost 500.
“The RSPB is calling for more to be done to protect birds of prey. Latest figures by the wildlife society show that there were 39 incidents off illegal bird killings in the South last year, with Kent and Hampshire being the second most affected areas.” Taken from ITV news
Here at Best4hedging we are proud to be affiliated with the RSPB so we would like to discuss some general advice on how we can protect our wildlife and help them over the winter months.
Days are becoming shorter and food sources become scarce, now is the time that wildlife will be looking for a safe habitat for their annual hibernation. From now until spring, survival is the name of the game and creating a wildlife friendly garden could be the key to ensuring our beloved critters have an efficient habitat where they can safely reside. There are a number of ways that we can contribute to a wildlife friendly garden, some that require little effort and some that involve a few gardening tasks.
Wildlife Space in the Garden
The most simple, effortless way to provide a safe habitat for wildlife is to actually do a little less gardening! Most gardeners are horrified at the thought, but there are ways to avoid your green space from transforming into a back-yard jungle. All we’re recommending is that you sacrifice a small area of your garden and allow it to overgrow naturally, as clearing every bit of foliage and cutting every inch of grass turns your garden into a hostile environment for wildlife to survive. Allowing a space to grow will provide the suitable conditions in which wildlife can forage and find sustainable shelter.
Become a landlord to wildlife by building your own habitat using natural resources, create your own or, if you’re short on time, buy a ready-made habitat online! To make your own, start by arranging the kinds of things you’d normally dispose of such as logs, leaves or branches into a pile. This simple creation will offer shelter and attract insects so critters such as toads and hedgehogs, won’t have to forage in the frosty conditions for food. Wildlife species such as hedgehogs may struggle in certain areas to find what they need to build their home naturally, reducing their chances of survival in the harsh conditions of winter. These habitats not only benefit an array of critters, they make a unique garden feature where you can witness the comings and goings of the variety of wildlife that will be truly grateful for your help.
It’s not unusual for critters to wake during hibernation as they may require a quick nutritious lift to get them through the remainder of the season. But, as food sources are in short supply and with limited time to forage in the cold before returning to their chosen habitat, the mission to find food could be deemed impossible. By providing sufficient food supplies, you’re giving wildlife a helping hand to gain the nutrients they need to survive. Hedgehogs particularly like dog & cat food, mainly biscuits, avoid leaving out milk and bread as this upsets their tummies. Regularly fill you bird seed feeders and hang fat balls where you can, these are great for protein.
RSPB Bird Friendly Approved Hedging
To welcome birds to your gardens try our RSPB bird friendly hedging packs that are specifically designed to attract birds but they also offer a great shelter. Made from a mixture of species including Hawthorn, Wild Privet, Blackthorn and Juneberry. These hedging packs offer a great source of food for birds in the form of berries, seeds and sloes. They also provide dense foliage that’s perfect for nesting sites. As well as contributing to the conservation of local wildlife species, they also make fantastic hedging screens and windbreaks, and look great in both formal gardens and more relaxed settings, left to grow naturally.