Creating a wildlife-friendly habitat can be a fun and pleasing experience for any age, whether in a big city, a small backyard or a rural area with acres of land. Therefore, Pam Gray, Chief Operating Officer at Bonaventure Senior Living, is not surprised that the gardening club at Bonaventure is one of the most popular activities among senior citizens. A garden can provide all of the basics needed to attract the local wildlife. Pam Gray suggests starting small and expanding the gardens over time.
Q: What are the essential ingredients for a wildlife-friendly garden?
Pam Gray, Bonaventure Senior Living COO: A wildlife-friendly garden should include food, water, nests and protection from predators and weather.
Q: What type of food?
Pam Gray, Bonaventure Senior Living COO: Annual flowers and perennials either planted in containers or in the ground will attract butterflies, honey bees, hummingbirds and other beneficial insects.
Q: What should be added to a yard that already contains a few shrubs and trees?
Pam Gray, Bonaventure Senior Living COO: Adding a few birdhouses, perhaps a bird bath and a couple of bird feeders will motivate even more wildlife to visit the garden.
Q: What should the bird feeders be filled with?
Pam Gray, Bonaventure Senior Living COO: Thistle seeds and black oil sunflowers add essential fats and proteins to the diets of visiting birds, especially during the colder months when food becomes scarce.
Q: Will man-made nest boxes attract birds?
Pam Gray, Bonaventure Senior Living COO: Sure. As more wooded area is lost, it becomes harder for birds to find appropriate sites to raise their young. Fortunately, many nesting birds will move into a man-made nest box.
Q: What type of wildlife can one expect to see?
Pam Gray, Bonaventure Senior Living COO: A variety of songbirds, hummingbirds, butterflies, lizards, toads and even frogs.
Pam Gray joined Bonaventure Senior Living in 2004. In her spare time, she loves to create beautiful wildlife habitats in her backyard.