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UK and Ireland Part 3
Mammals, birds, plants and insects - environment and care

UK and Ireland Menu

PART 1 - Introduction - your garden and how to help bring back wildlife
PART 2 - Pond life & how to make a wildlife pond
you are here> PART 3 - Mammals, birds, plants and insects - environment and care
PART 4 - Reduce food miles and grow your own fruit and veg
Further information for Schools

How to live in harmony with the smaller creatures in your garden.

We have already mentioned the drastic reduction of amphibian and bird species, but small mammals are also disappearing at an alarming rate in the UK and Europe. As on every level of nature, this has a knock on effect, causing a species reduction all along the natural food chain - and eventually extinction. With fewer mammals, owls are now also an endangered species. They feed on small rodents which normally live in long grassy areas, ground cover and sheltered hedgerows. The hedgerows are disappearing and most farmland is sterile due the use of insecticides, hence less insects for food and no places for birds or mammals to nest. For example, an owl feeds its young on small rodents like mice and voles. But the further it has to travel to find them, its young have far less chance of survival. And with the huge reduction of natural ground cover, including over tidy gardens, mammals have very few habitats left.
And so... at least a half of your garden should remain "un-manicured". Scatter some wild flower seeds around these designated areas and then let the grass grow. Ground coverage with vegetation is what will attract small mammals.

Food and habitat supplements for small mammals.

Plant some berry trees, nut trees and hedgerow bushes around the borders of your garden. These will take some time to grow so you should also provide some food supplement. Most field and hedgerow rodents are herbivores. The wood mouse loves acorns, beech mast and hazel nuts. But if you don't have these growing in your garden yet, then they do like the occasional digestive biscuit! But of course, bird seeds and nuts left scattered around edges of your wild life boundaries will also be a good supplement for them.
To provide homes for your small garden mammals - particularly if you don't have hedgerows and sheltered areas - here's an easy way to make a mouse house: (Children, get a grown-up to supervise and do the cutting bits!) Get some old tennis balls and cut a 30mm hole in each ball and then spear them though the wall of the ball, opposite the hole with a thin bamboo stick or hard twig around 30cm long. (carefully pierce the ball first using a sharp tool) Cut little notches in the stick so mice can run up and down them easily. Get some dried grass or dried moss and stuff some inside the tennis ball. Then push the stick with the ball on the end of it into the long grass so that the ball is level with the top of the grass. It's a great mouse house, specially for tiny harvest mice.

Conservationists were recently installing plastic tubes in hedgerows around the UK to help re-establish the dwindling numbers of dormice. The tubes provide ideal nesting places and so far at least 10% of them show signs of occupation of this sleepy animal. Dormice sleep for eight months of the year. The rest of the time is searching for suitable habitat which has dwindled alarmingly over the past 35 years. If you have undisturbed hedgerows around your garden try this experiment yourself. But first, you must find out exactly what you need and most importantly what size of tubing. We suggest you get in touch with either English Nature or The People's Trust for Endangered Species and ask for details on what to do. (Remember though, never touch or handle a dormouse. It is illegal to do so.)

Note: It's a good idea to carefully mow a few narrow winding pathways around your natural long growing areas so that you can get access to these places if you need to ... and besides, if carefully designed, it provides an attractive perspective to your wildlife garden, as you can stroll around the pathways and see the activity without disturbing it. However, don't use a strimmer! Frogs and toads are regular victims of grass strimmers (and even shears). Always feel your way around grassy areas and check there is no wildlife tucked flat at the bottom of the vegetation before you start cutting.

By the way...

Contrary to misguided belief, attracting small mammals into your garden does not mean they are going to move into your house as well!
If you are setting up a well balanced wildlife garden with plenty of shelter and natural food sources, the last place they will want to explore is the inside of a human's house! Wood Mice, Harvest Mice and Field Voles are what their names suggest. They live outdoors and mind their own business!

A little more on the Dormouse...

The Dormouse is becoming very rare. They need thick hedgerows and forest environments to have any chance of survival. They sleep between October an April in a rolled ball.

Another Note: It's important that you don't disturb the hedgerows, nor clear the dead foliage from underneath them. This is important cover and protection for wildlife of all kinds. Dead foliage also mulches down, feeding natural organic nutrients back into the hedgerow plants and shrubs.

Bats

Bats have extremely delicate features. They are warm and soft to touch and are very clean animals. Many types of bat are now rare species, and you must not, in any circumstances disturb their habitat. If you have them in your attic, leave them alone. They do absolutely no harm to your building whatsoever, and are wonderful additions to your extended wildlife family. In fact you may not even realize that you have bats in your loft. They nest in such tightly enclosed areas in between rafters and walls, that you are unlikely to spot them. Usually the only sign of bat presence is a neat pattern of harmless bat droppings on the floor or side of a wall.
If a bat takes a wrong turn and comes into your house through an open window.. don't panic! Close the door of the room and leave the window wide open and the lights off. If the bat still hasn't left in a couple of hours. Get a thin but coarse net (so the bat doesn't get caught up in it, and carefully lower it over the bat. DO NOT scrape the bat off with a piece of card and into a bucket - (Yup ... VeggieGlobal was once instructed that this was "the way to do it" by a loud-mouthed know-it-all when a bat flew into a theatre and stuck itself on the ceiling!!) If you use any scraping instrument you will damage its delicate feet and wings. With the net covering the bat, carefully lift it off the ceiling or curtain with thick-gloved hands and take it straight to the window and free it. We recommend thick gloves in the extremely remote chance that the bat may be carrying rabies. The chances are extremely low but as with any wild animal, it's always best not to come in direct skin-to-skin contact with them, just in case.
(VeggieGlobal has rescued many pipistrelle bats from various situations like this, and in fact if you gently cup them into your hands and leave them to recover from a fright, they'll just doze off, or else make themselves at home and start washing themselves!... and the same goes for harvest mice! ...)

Hedgehogs

Hedgehogs are insectivores, (but they do love a plate of non-fishy cat or dog food with bits of cutup apples or pears!) They are also very friendly creatures, but again, becoming an increasingly rare sight. This, as usual is due to destruction of their natural habitat and scarce food sources. So feed a hedgehog whenever possible. Don't feed it bread and milk. This isn't good for them. Their normal diet is insects, slugs and worms, plus fallen fruit and fungi. Hedgehogs generally sleep during the day. If you see a hedgehog out in the daytime, it may be unwell. If it's one you are familiar with keep an eye on it. If it seems disorientated, put it in a box with some straw and take him to your local wildlife hospital. Hedgehogs can get abscesses, and a vet should be able to help. Remember, NEVER use any type of slug pellet in your garden. They will kill hedgehogs and their young - because slugs are part of a hedgehogs diet. Let the animals themselves be your "pest" controllers.

Yet another note!: Don't burn garden refuse. If you have a place where you want to build up a pile of leaves then do so but leave the pile over the winter until late April. If you can cover it with a waterproof sheeting then all the better. This will provide an ideal hibernation house for Hedgehogs. (If you need to dispose of some of your garden refuse like grass cuttings, then take them to your local household dump where many of them now have a recycling area for garden waste. This gets mulched down and used for compost). If you insist on making a bonfire then build it and burn it... don't give time for a poor hedgehog to burrow inside and then get burnt to death. Frogs and toads and slowworms are also attracted to "bonfire" piles. So overall, VeggieGlobal simply advises that you never build bonfires to burn garden leaves and wood - or refuse of any kind. Either create a compost area - and for the excess garden waste you can't compost yourself, take it to the garden waste recycling tip.

Harmless Deterents

Even in a wildlife garden there may be areas where you would prefer a little less animal antics ... usually your lawn or vegetable patch. Of course when it comes to lawns we are talking about moles. We have concocted a deterrent method which is not actually unpleasant to moles at all, its just inconvenient for them! It works in the same way as if we humans reached an area of stinging nettles or poison ivy on a country walk. We simply avoid it by walking around it. A single stinging nettle on its own is no problem, but a whole clump of them is, and this is the principle of how our mole deterrent works. There are some plants which moles tend to steer clear off. Just the odd plant here and there won't stop them from wandering into your lawn but creating a ring of them around your lawn may make Mr and Mrs Mole think twice about attempting to cross into it!

Moles

Moles always seem to have a hard time because so many people become infuriated by the earthy bumps they can leave on the lawn when coming up to grab a worm or two for dinner. If you are keeping a lawn area of your wildlife garden in a condition that you would prefer to be mole free here are some of our tips.

Keeping moles out of the lawn area of your wildlife garden. (The part which you would like to keep bump free!)

A mole's runway and therefore the bumps you see on lawns are usually the shallow type, used once or twice when it is searching for food. Moles more substantial main runways (or arteries) are usually part of a connecting social network which run under paths, hedgerows and even roads - so your earthy lawn bumps are usually just short-use remote tributaries off the main runs. Because the depth of the "tributary" mole runs which enter lawn areas, are usually only 2 to 3 inches underground, the first and most effective line of defence is to ensure that your mown lawn area is bordered with mole deterring plants before they get too keen to explore it. If you already have a mole hill lawn then the first thing to do is aim to send the "little-nearly-blind-miners" back to the other side of your lawn border! So assuming this is the case you need to put out some natural organic mole deterrent sachets, which we describe below how to make.

A SAFETY NOTE: Wormwood oil and castor oil can be toxic in high doses but the combination of wormwood and castor oil in this recipe poses no threat to wildlife or humans. However for extra precaution keep these sachets out of sight from children by covering them with a thin layer of earth when in situ. Castor oil is a fairly proven natural mole deterrent but should not be used on its own in concentrate. Far better results should be achievable when combined with the following sachet recipe which blends most of the known effective natural ingredients to deter moles.

NATURAL MOLE REPELLENT SACHETS.
Always use fresh organic ingredients whenever possible. (If home-grown, pick and subsequently dry the herbs mixture during new moon phase.)
The amount below is enough for approx 8 or more sachets.

THE MIXTURE
2 tablespoons of dried crushed rosemary leaves
2 tablespoons dried crushed wormwood (Artemisia absinthium) leaves
2 tablespoons dried sage leaves
1 to 2 tablespoons crushed cloves
3 tablespoons dried crushed elder leaves
2 cloves of crushed garlic
3 stems of chopped (dried) chives (optional)
Aprox 50ml of vodka (or isopropyl alcohol)
3 tablespoons of castor oil.

THE SOAK
Mix the rosemary, wormwood, sage, cloves, elder leaves, garlic and chives together in an open bowl. Then begin to pour over the vodka. Add as much vodka so as to turn the mix into a "watery" mulch. Leave to soak for 24 hours (The alcohol helps draw out the active ingredients and helps to release their scents)

THE SACHET
Cut a 12 cm square piece of muslin and soak it in a small plate of castor oil. Lift the soaked muslin out of the plate and lay flat. Now fill the muslin with a couple of tablespoons of the mixture. Lift all four corners up and tie it all into a sachet with natural raffia. Repeat this until all the mixture is used.
On your lawn, push a herbal sachet deep into the mole hill and also leave one on the surface just covered with a thin layer of earth. Work around your lawn and its borders systematically until you think the mole activity on the lawn has ceased.
After a few weeks in the ground recover what sachets you can and give them a bash with a wooden mallet to release the scent once again and then replant. (Depending how fast ingredients are composting this is usually only good for one replant)

MOLE REPELLING LAWN BORDER PLANTS.
Along with the repellent sachets to send off moles from your lawn, the following border plants and shrubs should effectively keep moles outside your lawn perimeter (The sachets laid along the border just beneath the surface should double your defence.) Here is a list of mole repelling plants: Daffodils. Wild Garlic. Chives. Wormwood (Type: Artemisia absinthium). Elder. Castor Plant (Not suitable near children. Only to be grown in warm humid native regions and with very responsible care)

Foxes (plus deer and badgers)

Foxes may be a common sight in built up areas, but most are in a sorry state of health. Mange is a main problem, a parasitic infestation triggered mainly by poor nutrition. The fox population has in fact decreased in recent years mainly from mange disease. Remember, animals like foxes and badgers lived in city areas before people did! The reason it may seem that there are more foxes than in previous years is simply because humans are driving animals away from their natural habitat, building houses and superstores on them.
To help build a healthy wildlife population, it is in our interest to provide them with food as a replacement for what they can't forage for themselves since their habitat has been destroyed. Foxes and badgers like dog and cat food, so empty a tin on the grass at dusk and mix it up with a few digestive biscuits, sit back and watch. If you see a young baby fox, leave it alone (the same goes with young deer) As with fledging birds, its most likely that their mother is near. If you make contact with the baby the mother may run off and the baby could be abandoned. Foxes like to rummage around in dustbins for scraps of food and many suffer terrible injuries from used tins. When you open a can of food make sure you completely remove the lid before disposing of it, then completly flatten the tin. This is so animals can't get their heads or noses caught inside them as they sniff out tins for food. This is also a fate that hedgehogs suffer too.

A final fox note: It's a pure myth that foxes try to kill cats. If you have cats with foxes around there's more chance that a cat will chase a fox. Foxes are actually quite playful with cats and may only chase them in return jest. Did you know that if a fox was left to wander through open fields with lots of chickens it would leave them alone ... if it was hungry it may catch one. Allow a fox to get into an enclosed pen or chicken hut and it will kill most of them ... but so would a cat ... It's all to do with man-made environments creating unnatural spaces for animals, which don't harmonize with the natural primal behavior of the species in question. Humans can also behave strangely in unfamiliar environments!

Insects and plants - and most importantly bees!

The kind of plants growing in your garden will dictate the kind of insects, birds (and small mammals) that are drawn to it. But before anything, the long grassy areas of your wildlife garden will most certainly attract grasshoppers and crickets; a soothing summer-sound and perhaps an indicator that your garden is proving to be cool hangout for a diverse mixture of wildlife. We will add more details about insects and plants as Looking-Glass (VeggieGlobal) continues to evolve.
But for the moment here are some tips:
Ants, hoverflies and ladybirds are aphid eating insects and are your best friends when keeping plant infestations at bay. But if you have a really bad aphid infestation (very unlikely in a naturally balanced garden) then cut the branches away where its most infested and dispose of them. If your flowers have blackfly blast them off with a powerful hose.
The more variations of different colored plants, the more insects you'll attract. Buddleia is of course an instant attraction to butterflies and dead easy (and cheap) to grow. (But yellow flowers in particular will attract aphid eating insects.
Unfortunately, the modern trend of garden planning is to "design" a garden full of non-native and often evergreen shrubs - cocooned in concrete slabs or surrounded by decking or shingle - and purely for the visual satisfaction of the house owners. This ignorant method of creating a garden does nothing for the local wildlife and most importantly nothing for the insect species. Bees in particular are one of the world's most important insects, and one of the main links in the chain which maintains life on this planet! Why? Because bees pollinate - which means as they pick up pollen from one plant they then carry it to another, which fertilizes the plant allowing it to reproduce. Without bees to bring life to plants there would eventually be no plants - and that means no vegetation which in turn means no food. This is just another reason why it's so important that you populate your garden with native flowers so that the busy bees can get on with their incredibly important work. Bees are in very serious decline and it's up to you to help reverse this catastrophic situation. So, get rid of the concrete, shingle and decking and help bring out the natural elements through the soil in your garden. Root your garden back into the Earth and watch it blossom!

Birds (and Squirrels)

Don't snip off dead flowers... the seeds in them provide essential food for many types of birds. You'll find many species of birds visiting your garden in the late autumn to feed of your old flower heads. Plants thrive far better if left alone! Feed your birds, but make sure you keep it up, as they will depend on you. So whenever possible leave out bird seed, grains, uncooked fine porridge oats (unsalted) finely crushed peanuts (unsalted) and finely chopped raisins and sultanas etc.
If leaving peanuts out on a feeder table ensure they are very finely crushed. More preferably, pack peanuts in a traditional wire mesh feeder so that birds have to peck at the nuts in small mouthfuls.
Do not feed birds bread as this can a) choke and kill baby birds. b) Can kill birds of all ages in freezing temperatures due to high salt content in bread making them excessively thirsty. (Causes birds to die of cold due to icy water in their bodies). VeggieGlobal's own research has currently concluded one carefully managed exception to feeding birds a certain type of bread, being very small non-stodgy crumbs of highly seeded organic wholemeal grain bread only in very early spring before breeding or late summer and only when mixed with other typical bird foods. Only attempt this if you feel suitably competent at advanced bird feeding. Rember never feed birds with any food which contains added salt.
To attract woodpeckers set up a wire mesh nut tube which doesn't swing around but is solidly attached to a tree or bracket. And don't forget the all-important nesting boxes to help encourage all your local bird species.

Long grassy areas will help to regenerate the disappearing world of small animals, which although unpleasant to dwell on are the food source of a now sparse owl population and other native birds of prey. Without a healthy population of rodents such as mice or voles etc., owls have to spend more time searching for food rather than breed or feed their young... hence the dramatic reduction of their species.
Finely crushed (unsalted) peanuts, seed and chicken corn for doves and wood pigeons is fine. Nuts in a hanging container is perfect for most birds. Make sure the container doesn't swing, so that woodpeckers find it easy to feed. And don't bother trying to stop squirrels feeding from nut containers... what's the point? They need to eat as well. In fact throw some seed, crushed nut,s chopped raisins and chopped sultanas on the ground for all animals and birds to enjoy. Magpies, jays and crows are known to frighten off other birds. But if you regularly put out enough food to go round, you'll notice that the magpies begin to leave other birds alone. The same goes for squirrels. Like magpies, squirrels can occasionally attack birds nests to eat eggs and even chicks, but these actions are attributed to lack of food available otherwise. Because humans have destroyed so much natural food resources of wildlife, these more drastic actions by magpies and squirrels may become more common. So it's entirely your responsibility to feed ALL the wildlife in your garden and treat them with equal respect. Don't frighten away squirrels, crows or magpies. You are just creating potential carnage and problems elsewhere by doing so. Instead, feed them so that they don't need to raid nests to feed themselves. By taking these commonsense actions, you'll find that the whole menagerie of your garden wildlife population will tolerate each other surprisingly well... because they know there's enough to go round!

Birds and Windows

Thousands of wild birds are killed each year by flying into window glass. By feeding birds close to your house you are inadvertently creating a much higher risk of them flying straight into a glass window when startled. Feeding close your house and near people means birds are startled far more often than if their feeding area is kept a safe distance from human disturbance. The reason birds and windows don't mix is because (from a bird's eye view) when picking up food from ground level, all they see in a glass window is the reflection of sky and probably trees - and a birds instinct is to always head of for sky (and trees). (Note: double glazed windows reflect twice as much sky as a single pane of glass). The consequences are devastating as birds hit the glass headfirst, often breaking their necks.
Although it may give you personal pleasure watching birds feeding close by your windows, it is vitally important that you site their feeding area as far away from the house as possible. It's also a good idea to put obstacles in front of windows to break up the sky / tree reflection. Light colour curtains on windows also help to break up the sky reflection.
Note: Greenhouses are another common danger for birds. Never leave a greenhouse door open if you have birds feeding nearby. They can easily wander inside and then panic. Again, their instinct is to fly straight for the sky which, of course they can see through the glass of a greenhouse.

Birds and wind turbines

As more and more people erect domestic wind turbines in their properties to generate electricity, reports are rapidly increasing of birds being killed as they fly into the spinning blades. If you have a wind turbine, surround the entire blade system with a box or sphere made of chicken wire (mesh. The wind can still blow through, but the birds will fly around it.

Fledglings (baby birds)

The most useful thing you can do when young birds begin to leave the nest is to keep your cat or dog away from the nest area. In fact, just keep them indoors until the fledglings have learnt to fly from the ground and perch safely in trees. If you see a young bird on the ground that looks as if its lost, leave it alone. Its mother is most likely only a short distance away finding food. Move away from the area and return in a couple of hours. You're bound to find that the young bird has gone. If you are concerned that a barely feathered baby bird has prematurely fallen from its nest and is clearly being neglected by its parents, only then should you take action and telephone a registered animal rescue centre with a no-kill policy for advice.

Only in the following circumstances should you attempt to help a young bird on its way to survival with this simple but highly effective method:

Have you found a young bird with undeveloped wings on the ground?
Are the parents still close by?
Does the bird look undamaged?
Does the bird look as if it has no chance of flying up to perch on a tree and therefore stay safe from cats and birds of prey?
Have you observed from distance for at least three hours to completely asses the situation?

If the answer to all the above questions is yes then here's what you can do:
It is likely that the baby bird has fallen or has been blown from its nearby nest prematurely. To protect it from cats, foxes and birds of prey over the next few days you will need to rehouse the bird for its own safety - whilst completely retaining its freedom and parental contact.
First, get a dark green wire framed hanging basket (if it's a dove or blackbird etc., make sure it's big enough - in other words, try and match the size of the hanging basket to suit the type of bird). Then get a bag of moss. First, line the hanging basket with a brown mulched paper liner and make a few small holes in the bottom. Now pad the basket with plenty of moss.
Your basket nest is now ready for positioning.
Wedge the basket in a tree closest to where you believe the original nest is. Make sure its around 2 metres or higher off the ground. Try and make sure the basket is positioned in a way that makes it impossible for cats to get to ... In fact there are various ways you can attach the basket to a tree, even by screwing it to the trunk itself. But whatever you do make sure it is properly secure and has plenty of tree canopy above to keep the rain off it. Make sure the parents will be able to spot the nest, so don't camouflage it too much.
Now you have your nest in place, approach the baby-bird from behind and gently pick it up and put it straight into the nest. (always wear gloves so as not to imprint your scent on the bird, beacause this could cause the parent to abandon it) Once in the nest the baby will most likely settle down immediately. Keep an eye on the nest, but leave the young bird alone from this point. Stay well away for the nest, so that the parents can get used to the situation. This may take hours and you possibly won't see activity until the next day. But eventually you will most likely find that the parents are attending the baby, feeding and grooming it and even tidying the nest.
Remember ...It is important that you stay well away from the nest at all times.
This "rehabilitation nest" system works far more often than not. It keeps the baby and its parents unaffected by trauma as much as possible. The only intervention you need to do throughout this is just to keep a distant eye on the nest over the next few days - and if the young one prematurely falls out again, just go and put it back in. You'll notice the baby will periodically jump around in the nest as it exercises its wings. Finally, in a few days it will be strong enough to attempt proper flight, aided by its parents. It may fall to the ground at this point, but all you need to do is observe to see if its wings are now developed enough to get airborne.
Note: You'll probably find other birds waiting to move in to your rather palatial nest after the baby has finally left!

An injured or sick animal or bird

If you find an injured or sick animal in your garden, the prime rule is to make sure it's kept warm. Get a cardboard box, cut a few air holes in the top and side and place newspapers inside with some loose material. Get a hot water bottle, fill it up with warm to hot (NOT boiling) water and place the box on top of it. Put the animal in the box and check the heat from the bottle is a comfortable temperature. Keep the animal away from drafts and make sure there is a constant supply of water (not ice cold). Take the animal to a wildlife hospital as soon as possible. Keep the box covered completely with a blanket, but make sure there are plenty of air holes in the box. An animal will relax and calm down when in a very dark environment. The less contact you have with an animal at these initial stages, the more chance of its survival. Sick animals die of fright and stress more often than their actual injuries.

Here's another VeggieGlobal idea to encourage tits into your garden

A "Tit Village"!
This is an amazingly simple way to encourage the nesting and roosting of tits (of almost all variations) and to help recover numbers of the small bird population. The VeggieGlobal Hanging Basket Bird Village takes just minutes to build and install.
First, get hold of a wire mesh hanging basket with the mesh holes between 20mm and 33mm apart. These holes can easily be stretched to create holes that are suitable to attract birds that prefer specific entrance sizes. For example, Great Tits, Blue Tits, Coal Tits, Pied Flycatchers and Tree Sparrows prefer a hole around 28 mm, whereas the House Sparrow and Nuthatch prefer a larger hole of 32 mm. Now fill the hanging basket to the brim with moss.
NOTE: Moss can be bought in bags at garden centres or preferably, if you have a mossy lawn, can be raked out or scarified usually in late autumn /winter, then dried out during the winter; either to be then used for this purpose or to line open mesh hanging baskets for flower planting.
To help slightly compress the moss, add a 20 mm layer of clean soil on the surface of the moss-filled hanging basket. That's it! You have now made your bird village.
Now hang the basket (securely so it can't blow down) a minimum of 2.4 metres or higher above ground level and just underneath some kind of roof area so that the basket doesn't get saturated when it's raining. To give the birds a head start, push your finger into three areas around the basket (about halfway down) to create inviting holes. Now sit back and watch.
Within weeks of springtime activity you'll hopefully have not just one but even three or four tits either nesting or making the bird village their night-time sleeping holes! They will dig themselves into the basket and snuggle in for the night. You can even locate the basket near a window so you can watch this amazing spectacle. They don't seem to be that bothered about how close they are to human activity. However, like all animals and birds they can sense when you are deliberately watching them and that can make them a bit nervous! But if you are simply busy in your kitchen, bedroom or living room, the birds in the basket just outside your window will also be bedding down for the night or tending to their young!
We encourage all VeggieGlobal
visitors of this wildlife garden site to try the hanging basket bird village out for themselves.
NOTE: As you may have read further up this page, birds and glass windows do not mix, so if you do hang a bird village basket close to your windows make sure the window glass is obscured in places so that birds don't think it's something they can fly "through
" by mistake.
So far, the VeggieGlobal / Looking-Glass hanging basket bird village has been refuge for four tits, but we expect that other types of small birds may well benefit from this extremely effective bird sanctuary. So, if you create one of these and find it populated by other types of birds we want to hear from you. Please use our contact page to tell us your experiences with your hanging basket bird village!
TIP. If possible, add a nut feeder around around 6 metres away from the basket to encourage easy feeding.

Your little piece of a Wildlife Wonderland

If you have followed the guidelines we have laid out here you would have hopefully managed to create an active haven of wildlife all around your garden. The results will be clear to see over year or so. And you can be proud to say you have played your part by reintroducing our declining wildlife back into one small part of the world ... right outside your house ... and it will be a pleasure for you to enjoy as well.

Finally ... Part 4 of this VeggieGlobal mini-site highlights the importance of integrating a final element; to create the perfectly balanced wildlife garden which will help reduce food miles and wasted packaging.

FURTHER READING - A great selection of wildlife gardening books
Further information for Schools

More Information for UK Schools & Colleges Undertaking Wildlife Projects

If you are a school working on a wildlife project and would like to develop a wildlife area or garden based on VeggieGlobal's schemes then you can request further information not currently available on-line. Contact us with your details and initial ideas on a wildlife area and we will try to provide you with further, more customised help.
Alternatively find more tips and ideas for a school wildlife garden

Copyright John O'Donnell (VeggieGlobal.com and Looking-Glass.co.uk)
Any redistribution or reproduction of part or all of the contents of these websites in any form is prohibited.

UK and Ireland Menu

PART 1 - Introduction - your garden and how to help bring back wildlife
PART 2 - Pond life & how to make a wildlife pond
you are here> PART 3 - Mammals, birds, plants and insects - environment and care
PART 4 - Reduce food miles and grow your own fruit and veg
Further information for Schools

More Related Areas

Sharing This Planet With The Animals - a useful guide to help you live side by side with your animal friends.

UK and Ireland may also wish to visit the Wildlife Files section here at VeggieGlobal for more advice about wildlife friendly gardens.

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