Living with Wildlife

Whether you want to attract birds to your backyard or deter wild animals from eating your crops, learning how to live with wildlife can be a challenge.

Two House Sparrows sitting on a rock wall. Photo: Lip Kee CC BY-SA 2.0
House Sparrows can be found on every continent except Antarctica. They aggressively take over the nests of swallows and bluebirds. Photo: Lip Kee CC BY-SA 2.0

Wildlife Habitats

Various habitats are attractive to different kinds of wildlife. No matter what you plan to do with your property, an understanding of your habitats’ characteristics will help you manage the landscape appropriately. In Benton County, your property is likely to contain one or more of the following habitats.

high school students preparing to plant natives
high school students preparing to plant natives

Creating Wildlife Habitat

No matter what habitats exist on your property, you can encourage wildlife to visit by providing these three basic requirements:

  • Food

  • Water

  • Shelter


A surprising range of insects and birds pollinate crops and native plants. Pollinators in the Willamette Valley include hummingbirds, bees, beetles, butterflies, and other insects. These busy neighbors provide a very important service. Over 75% of all flowering plants depend on animal pollinators. The list includes native plants as well as over 100 crops.


The resources on this page focus on all the ways we can support birds. Our informative brochures and bird-friendly landscape designs will help you give birds the four basic things they need:

  • Water

  • Cover

  • Nest Sites

  • Food

Related Blog Posts

a forest with trees of varying heights to demonstrateall the canopy layers that birds use
Tips to Create a Bird-Friendly Garden
Lauren Pharr | June 3, 2021

In this post, Lauren offers 6 tips on how you can design a bird-friendly garden right in your own backyard.

Two House Sparrows sitting on a rock wall. Photo: Lip Kee CC BY-SA 2.0
Help Swallows and Bluebirds Thrive
Heath Keirstead | June 3, 2021

If you have nest boxes for swallows or bluebirds, you may have house sparrows too. House Sparrows are considered by many a pest because of their aggressive nesting behavior. Learn what you can do.

The Impacts of Nonnative Plants on Birds
Lauren Pharr | April 28, 2021

In my blog post The Native Link: The Importance of Native Plants to Birds, I describe the importance of native plants to the ecosystem, and more specifically, how birds benefit from native plants. But what exactly is the problem with nonnative, and more specifically invasive, plants and how do they affect birds and the ecosystem

Copyright ©2013- 2023 Benton Soil & Water Conservation District. All rights reserved.