Five Ways To Bring Beneficial Species To Your Backyard
Often you will find that if you have a pond, you’ll also have some wild visitors.
Frogs, bees and other valuable wildlife will naturally gravitate to your personal oasis if they’re in your area and they can be great for your little ecosystem.
Essentially it’s the build it and they will come mentality but if you’d like to increase the amount of wildlife hanging out at your place, there are some simple steps you can take to make your backyard a bit more enticing to them:
Add A Frog Bog
Frogs differ to your fishy friends in that they actually prefer still water. Since this goes against everything you need to do to keep your pond healthy, we wouldn’t recommend trying to make it the perfect froggy oasis but that doesn’t mean you can’t have your cake and eat it too.
Consider adding your own mini wetland on the downhill side of your pond. Frogs love damp areas with lots of plants for them to hide and make their homes in and the plants will adore the added nutrient in any water that flows from your pond into their area. This adds extra beautification to your landscape and frogs are a great indicator of the health of your ecosystem.
Aussie frogs don’t need constant water as they’re used to their homes drying up in Summer so you don’t need to keep this area constantly flooded (and therefore won’t have to stress about attracting a horde of mosquitos) and will happily provide you with their lovely song and reduced insect populations as a reward for giving them a safe place to call home.
You’ll also be doing your bit for the environment as our froggy friends are disappearing at an alarming rate even though Australia is lucky to have over 200 species that call our country home.
Plant A Garden
Be it vegetable or flower, bees love to get amongst gardens. They use the pollen created by flowers to create their food and homes but they also support biodiversity by pollinating all the plants that have to fend for themselves.
By inviting bees into your backyard you’ll find that any flowering plants you have will become far healthier and you’ll be doing your bit to help preserve one of the most important animals on the planet. Obviously this may not be the best idea if you’re allergic to bee stings but for those who aren’t, there’s really no downside to having these little guys buzzing around and since they die if they sting, they’ll only do it as a last resort.
Bonus points here if you use the nutrient rich water that you remove from your pond while cleaning to water your new garden as it’ll love the added boost.
Make A Home For Birds
Birds are a wonderful addition to any yard. They look beautiful, provide you with lovely bird song and, depending on the species, can provide a range of benefits for your garden.
The easiest way to bring some birdy friends to your home is to give them somewhere to make theirs. The most straight forward ways to do this are to hang bird feeders, install a bird bath or put bird houses your trees but feel free to get creative.
We saw a bird bath worked into the landscaping of a pond once and it was so relaxing to watch the birds and bees fly around in all the plants by the water.
Composting and gardening invites worms to your yard and although they may not be the prettiest visitors, they’re super beneficial to your soil.
Not only can they help break down compost at a faster rate which is great for your fertiliser supply, they also aerate your soil (yes that’s a thing) which provides extra oxygen for your plants.
Composting also gives you somewhere to dump the sludge you clean out of your pond if you’re not so keen on putting it straight onto your garden which allows you to make use of the nutrients without the yuck factor that some people experience when we talk about putting pond waste on their plants.
Adding lilies to your pond entices dragonflies to come visit as they’ll have a nice, safe place to rest in the middle of your pond.
These guys will help your froggy friends in their mission to rid your backyard of mosquitos as they’re pretty much at the top of the insect food chain and they’re quite aesthetically pleasing as well.
Plus, plants can help improve your filtration and add oxygen to your pond during the day so they’re a wonderful idea even if your aim isn’t to attract as many dragonflies as possible.
Attracting wildlife to your backyard is a great way to diversify your environment and can be quite beneficial to your home and family.
As adults we understand the science behind it but that doesn’t mean that kids can’t enjoy your new visitors as well. They’ll love watching all your new friends interact and if you want to use them as a learning tool, there’s no better way to explain how ecosystems work than to show kids a wonderful functioning one that they can visit any time they like.
Let us know in the comments what wildlife you have visiting and what you’ve been doing (or will be doing) to attract them.