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5ThingsForWildlife_Illustrations-01.png 1. Let Wildlife be Wild

Springtime means wildlife like rabbit kits, nestling songbirds, and deer fawns are born! If you spot newborn or young wildlife, please do not disturb them. While some young animals might appear to be abandoned, many wildlife parents will leave their young alone and hidden to avoid attracting predators, only coming back to nurse them a few times a day.

DO not feed.jpgDo not feed wildlife​ Feeding wildlife is dangerous for wildlife and people. Sharing your food​ can sicken an animal, spread wildlife disease, or encourage the animal to approach hum​ans in the future, expecting a snack. Please help us keep wildlife wild by not feeding them. 

Binocular Icon.jpg​View from a distance – Give wildlife plenty of space. Some places, like Nation​​​al Parks, have distance requirements for viewing wildlife. This is important for the animal's well-being and for your safety. To view wildlife up close without disturbing it, use a zoom lens, binoculars or a spotting scope. Help keep wildlife wild by giving them space.

5ThingsForWildlife_Illustrations-02.png2. Plant Native Plants 

​Planting native trees, shrubs, and flowers provides both food and cover, for many wildlife species. Native plants benefit birds, bats, bees, butterflies, beetles, and small mammals, which play an important role in sustaining healthy ecosystems. Non-native or invasive plants can have harmful ecological impacts because they outcompete native plant species and do not provide nearly as many benefits to wildlife. 

Find Icon.jpgFIND: Native plants for your area here: Howard Nursery​​

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5ThingsForWildlife_Illustrations-03.png 3. Install Nest Boxes

Placing a nest box on your property can provide safe nesting areas for many species of birds and small mammals to raise their young. Properly managed nest boxes can be critically important to cavity-nesting species like blue birds and purple martins.

Info Icon.jpgLEARN: How to build other wildlife homes here: Woodcrafting for wildlife plans​​

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4. Create Leaf & Brush Piles for Additional Habitat

Songbirds, small mammals, reptiles, and amphibians, will use brush piles for nesting, resting, escaping from predators, and sheltering from harsh weather conditions. ​​​



Do you want to benefit wildlife and see more wildlife in your backyard? Join Pennsylvania Game Commission Regional Wildlife Diversity Biologist Tammy Colt for an informational webinar on making your yard more wildlife friendly. ​


This video is about creating better habitat on your property and building brushpiles for wildlife, hosted by Game Commission biologist Dan Mummert​

5ThingsForWildlife_Illustrations-05.png5. Secure Food, Garbage and Recycling

Once a bear finds easy access to food, they are likely to come back for more. To limit human-bear interactions, be sure to bring pet food containers and bird feeders inside at night; keep trash cans and recycle bins in​side until collection day; and regularly clean and remove grease from outside grills. 

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Monarch.png6. Slow the Mow

​Wait until after nesting season to begin mowing fallow fields and large yards to benefit a variety of grassland-nesting bird species and support pollinators like bees, moths, and bats. Being a lazy lawnmower and only cutting grass every 2-3 weeks can also lead to more lawn flowers that attract a diversity of pollinators to boost wildlife habitat.

Reasons not to mow:

  • Continuous mowing has little value for wildlife.  Areas not mowed frequently provide excellent habitat for wildlife to nest, raise young, and forage.
  • Grasses with shallow roots cannot uptake nutrients or prevent erosion as well as grasses that are deeply rooted.
  • Frequent mowing creates thatch buildup, resulting in undesirable groundcover conditions.​

Info Icon.jpg ​LEARN: More about managing open spaces for wildlife here: Mowing and Wildlife​

Read more icon.jpg READ:​ Field Management​ (PDF)

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