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Creating Wildlife Habitats

An image of this small evergreen shrub with cluster of small, bring white flowers. Photo by Matt Lavin.CC BY SA 2.0
An image of this small evergreen shrub with cluster of small, bring white flowers. Photo by Matt Lavin.CC BY SA 2.0

Grow Native Plants

The best thing you can do to increase habitat for wildlife is to incorporate native plants into your landscape. Benton SWCD holds an annual native plant sale that distributes plants sourced from nurseries that specialize in native plants for the Willamette Valley. 

A Diversity of Spaces

As you plan your landscape, consider offering a variety of plant species and heights for perches and shelter. Many animals use snags for perching, nesting and food. Include plants that fruit and flower at different times of year. Some bare soil is good for birds and ground nesting pollinators. Design your yard to include open areas of varying sizes with grasses but no shrubs and trees. 

Provide Shelters

Many features, such as bat and bird boxes, can be used by wildlife as shelter and can also be used for raising their young. For example, sturdy brush piles can be placed between two habitat types to benefit rabbits, turtles, juncos, quail and many other species.

Water Features

Water is another important habitat element. A water feature could be a pond, livestock watering facility, shallow bird bath, rain garden or even puddles for butterflies and birds. If you have a bird bath, change the water two to three times a week to avoid a mosquito infestation. If a pond is too deep it will attract invasive bullfrogs.

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