Tips to Protect Local Biodiversity on World Habitat Day

Today is World Habitat Day, started by the United Nations in 1985 to reflect on the state of our towns and cities, and on the basic right of all to adequate shelter.

Balancing wildlife’s needs for habitat and human’s right to adequate shelter can be a delicate one. This year’s theme, Housing For All: A Better Urban Future, reflects this balance, as we must consider environmental factors while creating housing for all.

Protecting local biodiversity is one way to make sure we sustain wildlife while expanding our housing.  We can do this by

  • Incorporate wildlife-friendly features in or around the building such as landscaping with native plants, applying decals to large windows to avoid bird-window strikes, and installing bird, bat, or bee boxes
  • Incorporating Green building practices in the building design. This can help reduce pollution and waste
  • Before clearing or demolition, always check for wildlife. Depending on the season, leave nests and baby birds until they fly away.
  • Call for animal-friendly removal of wildlife that lives inside buildings that need to be demolished or renovated. The animal kind accredited pest control companies are certified by the SPCA. Most wildlife in BC is protected and permits are required for the removal of wildlife
  • Removing food waste or scraps near worksites to avoid attracting wildlife to your site
  • Safely dispose of contaminated water and prevent wildlife from accessing this water
  • Ensure wildlife cannot access bins, pipes, or other materials that may be harmful to them
  • Consider reducing noise and light pollution at your site to ensure wildlife feeding and breeding patterns are unharmed

We can also create spaces for wildlife to thrive by…

  • Planting trees and growing native wildflowers will help wildlife thrive, as they are able to use these spaces to live and create their own ecosystems!
  • In the spring and summer, months leaving water out so birds can bathe and drink after a hard day in the can help! While this may seem like a simple idea, it can aid both insects and birds, since it gives birds an opportunity to wash off parasites and it gives bees a chance to refresh themselves.

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