Tips for helping wildlife
Read our top tips for transforming any outdoor space into a haven for wildlife!
Leave the weeds!
Let a patch or all of your lawn grow wild and don’t clear out the weeds. Wild flowering plants such as dandelion, knapweed, white-dead nettle, thistle and clover are brilliant nectar sources for butterflies and other pollinating insects, plus their seeds also feed birds.
Avoid using weed killer as this contains strong chemicals that can devastate local insect populations. By allowing insects to thrive in your garden you will also support bats - look out for them flitting over your garden on summer evenings!
Lush lawn by Emily Sabin
Create a log pile
Decaying wood is brilliant for insects like beetle larvae, woodlice and earwigs, and twigs are also an important nest building material for birds. Keeping wood debris in your garden is an easy way to help wildlife.
You can pile up any larger pieces of wood you have to hand in a shady spot to make a log pile habitat for insects. Tuck in twigs and fallen leaves amongst the logs to complete the cosy home. Wood mice, toads, slow worms and hedgehogs may move in too if you’re lucky!
Dig out a pond
Ponds are a lifeline for many creatures and you will be amazed at how quickly insects, amphibians and plants will take up home as soon as you put a pond in! This page has lots of information on how to start a pond and what to grow around the edges.
It is recommended that you do not add any fish to your wildlife pond, particularly if it is not a large pond, as fish can easily outcompete other species for food and also love to eat the spawn of frogs and newts.
Common frog by Graham Ainge
Feed the birds
Blue tits by Emily Sabin
Offer a range of high-energy food including sunflower seeds, fat or suet balls, mealworms and peanuts (in a mesh feeder). Remember to keep all bird feeders clean to prevent bacteria build-up. Scatter soaked sultanas and raisins around for ground-feeding birds such as blackbirds and thrushes.
You could also grow garden trees and plants that produce fruit, berries, hips, seeds and nuts. Try holly, hawthorn, cherry, blackthorn, ivy, rowan, crab apple, honeysuckle and dogwood.
Consider cat behaviour
Cute, cuddly, and perfectly adapted garden predators. Cats are not a natural part of the food chain and are able to kill up to10 times more wildlife than other similar-sized wild predators.
Try to limit their hunting instincts by placing bird feeders out of reach and keep cats indoors as much as possible during spring when birds are nesting and vulnerable babies are fledging.